Moving for Work? Questions to Ask

12With so many variables to consider (i.e. financial differences, social imbalance and your general happiness factor) moving for work is not a decision to make lightly. We know that saying goodbye to the familiar and starting over is hard. To ensure your transition is as smooth as possible, here’s a list of things to remember to ask yourself, your family, and your new employer when considering a move for work:

What is the New Company Offering?
Depending on the company, you might be reimbursed or given a moving allowance. Make sure to understand what expenses your new job is offering to pay, and what they won’t. Most only cover container, packing, and transportation costs, meaning that your personal travel expenses and any pre-move house hunting trips may not be refunded. Before you sign any contracts do your best to negotiate a positive outcome on your demands, and don’t forget to include a discussion on how much time you’ll have to move and settle in before you start work. Give yourself enough time to decompress after the stress of moving.

  • Which moving expenses (if any) are going to be paid by my new workplace?
  • Is this new job offering me better financial, health, retirement, and vacation benefits?
  • What does my future at this company look like, is there opportunity to move up?

 What Aspects Can You Compromise On?
During the moving process it’s easy to feel overwhelmed and like things are slipping out of control. If your impending move is a big one, consider compromising on smaller stresses so make room for the bigger picture. Will your new place be a rental or will you buy a smaller home, to save money or account for a difference in cost-of-living expenses? Are you willing to pay more to be closer to work? Will you stick to public transit and sell your car? Decide on priorities and absolutes early in the process. Determine what you’re willing to be flexible about before you start settling and making decisions. As you solidify plans and moving day approaches, remembering what you defined as a must and what you defined as flexible will help you feel more at ease and less regretful about decisions.

  • Do I accept geographic change, including new/different weather?
  • Am I willing to deal with the influence a city nearby may have, and my commute time?
  • Do I like the culture at my new office, and in my new neighborhood?

 Is Moving Worth It?
Everyone’s reasons for moving differ to some degree, and there are a lot of things to factor when considering the outcome of your move. Figure out the pros and cons related to different objectives when it comes to your move. For example create lists (your career goals, personal aspiration and happiness, the new job’s geographic location, the move’s financial impact, etc) and mule over pros and cons for each. Trust your gut feelings, but remember to try and rationalize your thinking around what benefits you by moving or staying, instead of making decisions based on apprehension and fear of the unknown!

  • Will I love my new job?
  • Is my significant other willing to move, and will they be able to find work?
  • How will this affect my children? (We’ve talked about the impact that moving can have already)
  • Are there lifestyle opportunities for me that are compatible with my current activities or hobbies, and where I can make new friends?
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