Corporate or Personal Relocation


What is Corporate Relocation?

You’re hired! Now it’s time to move. You may not even know that Corporate Relocation programs exist. Simply put,

Corporate Relocation is a limited assistance benefit companies offer to employees on an as-needed basis.

It is ‘conditional’ because there are formal guidelines for the benefit. It is ‘as-needed’ because not all job positions or employees can get it.

A Necessity

Relocation is a necessary part of the job recruiting process, designed to move new hires or existing employees into hard to fill jobs or difficult to fill geographic areas. The first choice for any employer is to fill an open job position with someone local to minimize costs. If there are no local candidates, the job posting may be listed nationally, offering a ‘relocation package’ to a qualified candidate.

In the late 1980’s relocation benefits became increasingly important at a time when business was becoming more global, and competition for talent was heating up. As a result, a steady increase in benefit offerings has pushed the average cost to relocate one home-owning employee to over $90,000.  It is now common in the major metropolitan areas for employers to spend more than $200,000 per relocation.

With the high cost of relocating it is easy to understand why most people will not move at the request of a company unless he or she is receiving some form of financial assistance.

Who Gets a Corporate Move?

Relocation offerings are more dependent on business need than any one person. Most job postings will have a section to designate if relocation benefits are available.

  • Company size: the odds of being offered relocation benefits increases as the scale of business increases. The economy of it is easy to understand. Large multinational corporations can afford to spend more on relocation benefits than smaller, less financially capable companies.
  • Budgeting: even big business budget restrictions can preclude relocation. It is common for some departments to be able to offer relocation while others cannot.
  • Job importance: familiar and easy to fill positions are less likely to get relocation (think Administrative Assistant). Industry specific jobs or hard to fill positions are more likely to receive benefits.
  • Challenging geography: employment positions in locations that are out of the environmental norm are often hard to fill. Examples include severely hot or cold climates, and areas that are secluded or a high-security risk.
  • The group moves: when a company moves operations to an alternate geography, they may offer a unique ‘group move plan’ to retain employees.
  • Desired colleague: in rare occasions, there are highly qualified employees with specific traits that a business must have.
  • Precedent: sometimes relocation will be offered just because someone else received benefits for the same job position in the past. They don’t want to appear bias or to show favoritism.

If no relocation benefits are offered for a position you are interested in, ask if the company will make an exception for you. Note that ReloTutor provides information about relocations within the United States. None of the materials contained in this site are intended for International transfers.

What Is Personal Relocation?

Personal relocation, also known as moving, is the process of leaving your current residence and settling in a different one. A move can be to a nearby location within the same city or a much farther location in a different city. Cross country or to a different country can take a toll on you and your family. A significant move can be extremely stressful, especially for large families. Organization and preparation are essential to making your move successful. If you are moving to a new city, it is best that you learn as much as you can about the location before your move. Choosing a Realtor, in advance of your move, can help getting you the information about the area. Through the constant contact, you can save a lot of effort and stress.

You may not be able to move mountains, but you can plan an organized move with a little help from this step-by-step timeline.

Two Months Before

  1. Sort and Purge.

    Go through every room of your house and decide what you’d like to keep and what you can get rid of. Think about whether any items will require special packing or extra insurance coverage.

  2. Research.

    Start investigating moving company options. Do not rely on a quote over the phone; request an on-site estimate. Get an estimate in writing from each company, and make sure it has a USDOT (U.S. Department of Transportation) number on it if you are moving to a different state. If you’re moving within a state, some states require a USDOT number, check to see if your state does. Click Here You can also check with your state’s public utility commission, moving association or Better Business Bureau. Click Here

  3. Create a Moving Binder.

    Use this binder to keep track of everything—all your estimates, your receipts, and an inventory of all the items you’re moving.

  4. Organize School Records.

    Go to your children’s school and arrange for their records to transfer to their new school district.

Six Weeks Before
  1. Order Supplies.

    Order boxes and other supplies such as tape, Bubble Wrap, and permanent markers. Don’t forget to order specialty containers, such as dish barrels or wardrobe boxes.

  2. Use It or Lose It.

    Start using up things that you don’t want to move, like frozen or perishable foods and cleaning supplies.

  3. Take Measurements.

    Check room dimensions at your new home, if possible, and make sure larger pieces of furniture will fit through the door.

One Month Before

  1. Choose Your Mover and Confirm the Arrangements.

    Select a company and get written confirmation of your moving date, costs, and other details.

  2. Begin Packing.

    Start packing the things that you use most infrequently, such as the waffle iron and croquet set. While packing, note items of particular value that might require additional insurance from your moving company. Make sure to declare, in writing, any items valued over $100 per pound, such as a computer.

  3. Label.

    Clearly label and number each box with its contents and the room it’s going to. Labeling will help you to keep an inventory of your belongings. Pack and label “essentials” boxes of items you’ll need right away.

  4. Separate Valuables.

    Add items such as jewelry and important files to a safe box that you’ll personally transport to your new home. Make sure to put the mover’s estimate in this box. You’ll need it for reference on moving day.

  5. Do a Change of Address.

    Go to your local post office and fill out a change-of-address form, or do it online at But in case there are stragglers, it’s always wise to ask a close neighbor to look out for mail after you’ve moved. Check in with him or her two weeks after the move, and again two weeks after that.

  6. Notify Relevant Parties.

    Alert the following of your move: banks, brokerage firms, your employer’s human resources department, magazine and newspapers you subscribe to, and credit card, insurance, and utility companies.

  7. Forward Medical Records.

    Arrange for medical records to be sent to any new health-care providers or obtain copies of them yourself. Ask for referrals.

Two Weeks Before

  1. Arrange To Be Off From Work on Moving Day.

    Notify your office that you plan to supervise the move and therefore need the day off.

  2. Tune Up.

    Take your car to a garage, and ask the mechanic to consider what services might be needed if you’re moving to a new climate.

  3. Clean Out Your Safe-Deposit Box.

    If you’ll be changing banks, remove the contents of your safe-deposit box and put them in the safe box that you’ll take with you on moving day.

  4. Contact the Moving Company.

    Reconfirm the arrangements.

One Week Before

  1. Refill Prescriptions.

    Stock up on prescriptions you’ll need during the next couple of weeks.

  2. Pack Your Suitcases.

    Aim to finish your general packing a few days before your moving date. Then pack suitcases for everyone in the family with enough clothes to wear for a few days.

A Few Days Before

  1. Defrost the Freezer.

    If your refrigerator is moving with you, make sure to empty, clean, and defrost it at least 24 hours before moving day.

  2. Double-Check the Details.

    Reconfirm the moving company’s arrival time and other specifics and make sure you have prepared exact, written directions to your new home for the staff. Include contact information, such as your cell phone number.

  3. Plan For the Payment.

    Arrange to pay your mover with a credit card, money order, cashier’s check or cash for payment and tip. If the staff has done an excellent job, 10 to 15 percent of the total fee is a good tip. If your move was especially difficult, you might tip each mover up to $100. Don’t forget that refreshments are always appreciated.

Moving Day

  1. Verify.

    Make sure that the moving truck that shows up is the company you hired: The USDOT number painted on its side should match the number on the estimate. Additionally, you can check if the moving truck has the company’s branding or vehicle number in your confirmation. Scams are not unheard-of.

  2. Take Inventory.

    Before the movers leave, sign the bill of lading/inventory list and keep a copy.

Photo: Cindy Belhumeur, ABR, SRS, Managing Broker / Owner
Photo: Cindy Belhumeur, ABR, SRS, Managing Broker / Owner

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