How Much Time Should You Be Allowed for a Job Relocation?

As exciting as it is to land a new position or promotion in a new city, relocation is stressful. You have to find a place to live, pack your belongings, and sell your home, often in a matter of days. If you feel that your new employer has set an aggressive or unrealistic timeline for your move, it might help to know the statistics regarding workplace transfers and the average time allowed for relocation.

How Long Do Companies Give You to Relocate? 

The amount of time you have to relocate is typically a matter of negotiation between you and your employer. There are no labor laws dictating how long an employer must give you in the event of a relocation, but there are some basic industry standards. 

According to Glenn Scalise, president of AB Personnel Services, an HR services company, “There is no amount of time they have to give you, but they normally give you between 2 to 4 weeks. It all depends on how badly they want you to take the job and how soon they want you there. It’s whatever you negotiate.”

There are actually two timelines that must be considered: the amount of time you have to accept the offer, and the amount of time you have to relocate. Because you’re being asked to make a major life shift, you can’t be expected to make the decision in 24 hours. Most reasonable employers will give you 2 weeks to decide. Once you accept the offer, you might expect 4 weeks, or the length of 2 pay cycles, to make the move. 

But again, depending on how eager they are to get you on board, you may have some negotiating power on this timeline. 

How to Negotiate Your Relocation Timeline

If your employer requests an unreasonably fast transition, or if you suspect you’ll need more than the allotted 2 to 4 weeks, present the employer with a counter-offer. Just be sure to come to the table prepared.

  • Remind your employer of how grateful you are for the opportunity and how excited you are to make the move. 
  • Present your employer with a specific date when you’d feel comfortable moving; avoid generalized requests like “I think I might need a little more time…” 
  • Present a detailed breakdown of why you need the extra time; provide specific estimates for how much time it will take you to pack and transport your belongings, list your home, find new housing, etc…
  • Be prepared to have your request rejected or countered. It happens. But as long as you do your due diligence, your employer should see your position and make an effort to work with you. 

Once you iron out the timeline, the next step is to ensure that you can complete the transfer in time. 

How to Prepare for Your Relocation 

A quick relocation can be stressful, but as long as you’re prepared, you can successfully meet those tight deadlines with your mental health intact. 

Know the business relocation costs 

The total moving costs can range from $10,000 to $15,000 on average. Hopefully your employer is assisting with this. A long-distance moving company can run you $2,000 to $5,000 per load, and then you have to consider your own travel costs, real estate or lease termination costs, and other incidentals. 

Some companies offer relocation packages that assist with not only the costs but also the logistics of relocating. They might arrange for the moving company, help you find temporary housing in your destination city, and ensure that the move goes off without a hitch.

If a relocation package is available, you should absolutely accept it. In some cases, though, the company may just offer you a cash payment to cover the costs. 

Covered costs often include: 

  • Professional moving and/or packing services 
  • Moving truck rentals (if you move your own belongings) 
  • The cost of moving supplies (boxes, totes, tape, etc…)
  • Automotive transportation (moving your vehicles to a new city)
  • Storage rentals
  • Your home’s closing costs 
  • Lease early cancellation fees 
  • Airfare to your destination 
  • Hotels and temporary housing 

Be sure to mention the relocation costs as part of your negotiation when accepting the new position. 

Know your timeline

Once you know how much time you have, you can devise a moving strategy. You’ll want to organize the movers and start packing on day one. Most of the process can be handled quickly if you dedicate the hours. 

The most difficult hurdle is selling your home if you happen to own it. In 2018, the average American home spent 65 to 93 days on the market, which is a far cry from the four weeks usually allotted for a job transfer. 

It’s a lengthy process that involves: 

  • Negotiations with buyers
  • Home offers and counter-offers 
  • The escrow process (at least 30 days) 
  • The home inspection
  • The home appraisal
  • The loan approval process 
  • Home repairs 

It can take even longer when you consider additional factors like the number of days required to list your home in the first place. And sometimes home sales fall through. A buyer may back out, the home might not appraise for what you expected, and the requested repairs may be more significant than you thought. 

If you want to transition smoothly to your new job, you need to decide what you’re going to do about your existing home.

How to Sell Your Home Quickly Before Relocating

If you want to sell your home quickly and avoid the often-lengthy listing process, your best bet is to opt for a short sale. Rather than dealing with agents and buyers, you can sell directly to a real estate investor for cash. This enables you to move out in days—not months—and avoid many of the headaches traditionally associated with moving. 

At Get Fair Home Offers, we buy houses in Los Angeles and throughout Southern California. When you sell your home to us: 

  • You can be out in as little as 7 days with cash in hand 
  • You don’t have to make any repairs or do any cleaning; we take care of it all 
  • You get a fair, competitive rate based on the after-repair value of your home 

We’ll make an offer on any home, regardless of the condition, and the whole process is quick. No loan approvals, no escrow necessary. We make it easy to pack up and start your new life. If you’d like to learn more or receive your free, no-hassle quote, give us a call at (626) 817-3351.

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