How to Negotiate a Relocation Package

Negotiate Relocation

How to Negotiate a Relocation Package

You’ve been offered an amazing new job opportunity. The only problem is, you’re going to have to move. Salary negotiation during a normal job hunt can be tricky enough. Throw a move on top of it and there’s a lot to consider.

Understanding Your Salary

Let’s start with salary. The cost of living can vary dramatically across the US. According to Nerdwallets cost of living calculator, if you make $50K living in Atlanta, GA, you’ll need to make $117K in New York City just to maintain your current standard of living. Things like rent, groceries, fuel, can all greatly fluctuate depending on where you are in the country.

While a generic cost of living calculator can give you a pretty good idea on how your costs might change, you also need to consider your own personal situation. Will you need to send your kids to private school? Do you have specific health costs that will go up? Will your commute change and become significantly more costly? If you’re moving away from friends and family, will you have additional child care costs?

When discussing salary, make sure to point out how the move will affect your living costs. The more detail you can provide, the stronger your position will be. If you’re looking for a 20% increase in salary, factor this in on top of your cost of living adjustment.

Maximize Your Relocation Package

Salary is only one component of the negotiation. You also want to make sure the move doesn’t leave you footing a huge bill. The average cost for a long distance move stands at roughly $4,700, but can easily exceed $10,000 depending on how much you’re moving.

Over half of all companies will provide some form of relocation assistance to new hires or transferees. When negotiating, it’s important to know what you can ask for. While there isn’t a limit to what can be covered, these are typical components of a relocation package.

  • pre-move visit (to check out housing and schools)
  • travel expenses (flights)
  • temporary living arrangements or corporate housing
  • moving costs
  • housing costs (breaking a lease or selling/buying a home)

In general, the higher up the corporate ladder you sit, the more you can ask for. But, it still never hurts to ask, even if you’re a more junior employee. If the company really wants to hire you, they’ll help with the relocation costs.

The key to winning any negotiation is information. If you can back up your salary and relocation package requests with solid reasoning and hard costs, you’ll be in a much stronger position to get everything you want.

Ryan Carrigan

Ryan Carrigan is a relocation expert and co-founder of, a website providing instant moving estimates and price comparison. Ryan has helped thousands of people successfully relocate across the US.

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