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Got a new gig, how much assistance w/relocation expenses should I ask for?

Discussion in 'Anything goes' started by ucacm, Dec 16, 2010.

  1. ucacm

    ucacm Active Member

    So, I just got a job in a new field and am moving to Washington, DC. This is the first time I've ever had an employer offer to provide assistance for my moving expenses. I'm not planning on taking anything to DC with me outside of my clothes, laptop, and a few small personal items. I'm still up in the air on whether I want to take my car, or leave it with my parents, or fly back and get it a few months after I get settled in.

    After I accepted the job and salary, my HR contact offered to assist me with any relocation expenses if it was "within our budget." Gas, food, a moving truck, boxes, packing supplies, a plane ticket, and hotel costs were specifically mentioned. Assistance with rent was specifically excluded. I was given a few days to think about relocation expenses and submit an estimate.

    I don't want to be greedy, but I don't want to spend money out of my pocket for no reason. How much should I ask for? How would you go about putting together an estimate for an area that you are pretty unfamiliar with? I am pretty sure I'm going to fly to DC and then spend a few days looking for my own place. I've got a few friends in DC that have offered to assist me with my search for housing and/or let me crash at their place while I'm looking.
  2. podunk press

    podunk press Active Member

    1. Hope you budgeted for housing ahead of time. It ain't cheap to live in, or near, D.C.
    2. I think just about anything reasonable will be acceptable, since they've already said they could help out. The worst thing they can say is "no, we can't cover that," then you resubmit another proposal.
  3. imjustagirl

    imjustagirl Active Member

    Wait, you accepted a job before you knew what the relocation package was? How does that happen?
  4. KJIM

    KJIM Well-Known Member

    I doubt your new company intends to fly you out there and back and then move all your stuff. It sounds like either "we fly you or we move your stuff," and asking for both might not start you out on the right foot.
  5. mustangj17

    mustangj17 Active Member

    You just lost a ton of leverage with any package they will offer you because you already accepted the job. Should have tactfully negotiated that first. And really, we can't tell you how much to expense. You have to create your own budget.

    If you fly, include the plane ticket. If you drive give them a mileage estimate and use the government rate of 55 cents per gallon. If you have to stay in a hotel overnight on your drive, include that, if you have to pay for boxes include that. You can probably even include food if you want.

    If the company is going to pay for moving expenses, they already have standards and boundaries set up for other expenses. My company for example will pay $15, $25 and $30 for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Anything under those figures and I don't even have to show an itemized receipt.

    The worse they can say is no -and give you a lower number. The best case is they say yes, and you pocket some money.
  6. imjustagirl

    imjustagirl Active Member

    Jesus. When I was in Richmond it was like $9, 12 and 17 for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Good luck going anywhere good and getting an entree and a beverage for $17.
  7. Mystery Meat II

    Mystery Meat II Well-Known Member

    Go with the federal per diem for hotel and food costs. That's at least a measuring stick.
  8. ucacm

    ucacm Active Member

    It's a government job (not federal). There was no negotiation of salary. Everything was set on a paytable based upon education + experience.
  9. forever_town

    forever_town Well-Known Member

    Perhaps you could have Googled relocation expenses for similar government entities or asked your would-be colleagues roughly how much relocation expenses the agency usually pays.

    Cost of living is pretty high in the suburbs, but it's even higher in the better parts of D.C. proper (Northwest is really expensive). Monkey County's pretty high, as are parts of Godless County.

    (I'll PM you with the real names of the places I'm referring to by code names).
  10. YGBFKM

    YGBFKM Guest

    Leave all your stuff in your apartment and just go there with what will fit in your car.
  11. Care Bear

    Care Bear Guest

    Huh? Why would you PM him with the names of counties surrounding DC? Maps aren't sequestered under the NSA. That was a really weird post. Also sounded somewhat intolerant.. Just saying'...
  12. ucacm

    ucacm Active Member

    I ended up requesting a plane ticket, 7 days in a hotel, and 7 days meals & incidental expenses. I figured a week would be enough time to find an apartment. I used the federal perdiem guidines for Washington DC metro as an estimate.
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