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What Do They Mean by "Relocate" for a Job?

by Rick Suttle

A relocation occurs when you move to another city or state for a job and must leave behind your present life: your home, family, friends and your church. People relocate for jobs every day for a variety of reasons. A relocation takes a lot of thought and planning. Fortunately, you can take certain steps to evaluate whether a job-related move is right for you. And, if it is, you can begin to plan for your next home.

Situation

Many relocations occur when companies transfer employees to other cities. A company might decide to consolidate operations in one facility, and if you still want your job, you must relocate. Or, to receive a promotion, you might be required to move to a regional office in another town. Moreover, you sometimes will choose to move on your own, often for a better job or especially if you can't get a job in the city in which you live. Whatever the situation, relocations require money, time, effort and a big decision.

Considerations

Evaluate a number of things before you decide whether to relocate for a job. For one thing, the move might advance your career but upset the career of your spouse. The underlying question then becomes, "Can your spouse find comparable employment in the new city?" Also, your kids might be thriving in their schools and have friends they don't want to leave. Weigh the pros and cons to best evaluate the possibility of relocation. More money and more exposure in your company might not be enough to offset a loss in your spouse's income. Reasons not to move include losing money on the sale of your home or not earning enough to offset higher living costs in the new city, according to "CBS Money Watch."

Urgency

The time frame in which you're expected to move can vary by company and situation. Some employers might give you months of warning about a relocation, while others will expect you to move within a month. If you get a promotion, the time frame for leaving your position might be comparable to when you resign and accept a new job: two or three weeks from the day of notice. Once you decide to move, you will need to start planning the relocation immediately.

Procedures

If you get transferred, ask your company if you will be compensated for the move, as moving can cost thousands of dollars. Should your company ofter full or partial compensation, find out if it will pay for the move in advance, pay the movers directly or if you will be reimbursed after the move. Additionally, some companies offer up-front bonuses to help employees cover living expenses. If you own a house, ask if your company will guarantee the sale of your home. If not, ascertain how many months of living expenses they will cover. Some companies pay employees' temporary living expenses for three months after a move, for example.

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