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Moving to a new city for a job? Taking on a new job is an adventure, but adding a move to the mix can be overwhelming. Check out these five tips for surviving a relocation like this.

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Have you or your partner accepted a new job? Does it involve relocating? Here are five tips from a couple who survived moving to a new city for a job.

My fiance received the call: “Congratulations, the job is yours. We want you to start in two weeks.”

My stomach dropped. My head spun. Moving to a new city for a job? Can we do this?

We could and we did. We learned how to manage relocating – physically and emotionally. You too can endure a move to a new city! Here are few survival tips from our experience.

1. COMMUNICATE

Communication is key during the initial stages of moving. If you or your significant other is searching for a new job, make sure you talk about where you are looking.

It is no easy task uprooting your lives for a new job. Discuss the impact of accepting a new position. Be open. Listen to one another. Share your feelings and concerns related to the change.

Here are a few topics to be sure to iron out before finalizing your moving plans:

Will you commute back and forth?

Will your spouse or partner move with you?

Will they come right away or in a few months?

In my situation, my fiance kept me informed that he was looking and interviewing outside of the city where we lived. We talked frequently about what moving to different cities would look like. We discussed and planned for how we would navigate a transition. We prepared options to terminate our lease early with our landlord. We anticipated the shift my career may undertake and we acknowledged the challenges of leaving behind our community and friends.

The conversations were hard. However, this communication was vital in helping us transition smoothly. When the offer came in, we had already started to plan.

2. UNDERSTAND RELOCATION EXPENSES

Offer accepted. Now what?  It’s time to evaluate costs associated with moving.

First things first, create a moving budget. Then make sure you understand who will cover what costs and how.

Find Out if Your Employer Covers Moving Expenses

Whether you’re relocating within the same organization or for a new company, be sure to ask if they compensate for moving related expenses. Compensation offerings can go beyond packing, moving and transporting your belongings. Relocation benefits can include:

  • Spousal / Family Support – From acclimating to new neighborhoods and schools, to helping your spouse find a new job.
  • Real Estate Support – This may include help buying or selling a home, compensation for penalties associated with terminating a lease early, or temporary housing to get you through the transition.

What is offered can vary based on company size, location, industry and/or the position being filled.

Address what is important to you and have a conversation to learn where your company can help. It never hurts to ask!

What if your employer does not cover relocation expenses?

Not to worry. You could still recoup some of the costs. Moving expenses can qualify as deductions on your federal tax return. Be sure to save all your receipts and store them with your other important documents.

Relocation can be expensive, but manageable. Understand and anticipate your costs.

Pro tip: A good accountant can help you organize, clarify, and maximize your deductions.

3. RESEARCH YOUR NEW LOCATION

Moving to a New City for a Job - Communicate With Your Spouse

You’re prepared and understand the costs. What’s next? Moving to a new city for a job be a challenge. Finding a place to live before you start can feel overwhelming. Especially when the turnaround is quick.

If variables permit, take time to tour your new town in person. Yes, you can find endless amounts of information online. However, visiting and driving through a new area’s neighborhoods will give you a better feel for what you do and don’t like.

Exploring a new city before relocating is a great opportunity to scope out your options. Deciding what to buy or rent is notably easier when you, or someone you trust, can walk through the space.

Can’t find a place to move into right away? Consider sites like Airbnb or VRBO who offer short and long-term options.

Evaluate what you need to bring with you right away and what can be saved for later. Prioritize the necessities and consider utilizing a storage unit for items you can live without until space permits.

4. KNOW YOU DON’T HAVE TO DO IT ALONE

Moving to a New City for a Job - Don't Go it Alone

When it comes to packing, make sure you don’t procrastinate. Start early. Divide up the work. Stay organized. These 10 packing tips are a great resource to make the task less daunting.

After you are packed, it is time to make the move. Moving everything out of your home and into a new place can take a lot of time and energy. This is a great time to enlist help.

Friends and family are a great set of extra hands. However, consider the value of experienced movers! The heavy couch, the impossibly narrow stairwell,the freshly painted walls… These obstacles and relocating challenges are just the thing for a professional team of movers. Qualified professionals can easily navigate all those tricky situations.

We hired two sets of movers. One group moved us out. The other moved us in. They were superheroes! They efficiently packed and unloaded the truck.

To save costs, we drove the moving van ourselves. If you’re nervous about driving a big moving van, check out these tips on driving a moving truck rental. They may help!

5. SETTLE IN ON YOUR TERMS

Moving to a New City for a Job - Settle In On Your Own Terms

You made it! How you approach unpacking is up to you.

My suggestion? Set up your bed. We left nearly all the other boxes for later, but being able to fall asleep comfortably was essential for us. It made the first night in an unfamiliar environment feel more like home.

Now is your chance to exhale. Order a pizza. Crack open some bubbly. Sit back and take it all in. You have successfully relocated.

Did you recently move to a new city for a job? How did you survive the adventure of relocating? Share your comments and experiences below.

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About the Author

Colleen Allegretti

As a Functional Business Development Advisor I work with small to mid-sized organizations to help them address organizational needs. I work alongside key personnel to create forward-looking strategies to drive​ long-term growth,​ profitability,​ and ​sustainability.
 Areas of focus include: functional strategy, brand identity, and social solutions.

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