Money & Career

The pros and cons of relocating for work

©iStockphoto.com/Yuri Arcurs Author: Canadian Living Credits: ©iStockphoto.com/Yuri Arcurs

Money & Career

The pros and cons of relocating for work

In a perfect world, your dream job would be located in your favourite city; you'd make good money, get along with your coworkers and have tons of room for growth.

Reality, however, is often much different. Both new graduates and seasoned professionals who are looking for employment or just a change may have spent months trying to find a job in the right city that meets all the criteria you're looking for. But only a few lucky people ever get the opportunity to find the job they want, where they want it. The rest of us? We've probably all considered relocating at some point in our career.

No matter how old you are or what stage of life you're at, relocating for a job is a major decision that shouldn't be taken lightly. Here are some pros and cons to help you figure out if relocating is the right decision for you.

The pros of moving for a job:
1. Increase in salary or seniority
It can be competitive trying to land a promotion or a better job, which is why so many people consider looking for work outside of the city that they live in. If you are offered a significant increase in salary, or a senior position you have been coveting, it can be very enticing to say yes to moving -- especially if you have a specialized job, or if competition in your field is fierce.


2. Lower cost of living

Sometimes moving can provide a significant decrease in living expenses, especially when you're moving from a big city to a small city. Some companies will provide you with a monthly living allowance, company car or other perks to help you lower your expenses after you move. 


3. A chance to start over

If you've been craving change in your life, whether it's professional or personal, relocating for a job might be exactly what you're looking for. A new environment can lift your spirits and give you back the energy you were missing.

Page 1 of 2 -- Are you ready to move for a job? Check out the cons of relocating for work on page 2.
The cons of moving for a job:

1. Starting over in a new city can be difficult
The prospect of leaving a place where you have friends, family and a network of contacts can be extremely intimidating, and uprooting your life to start over in a new city might not be for everyone. Some people relish change and see it as an adventure, but it takes time to get comfortable in a new environment, make new friends and establish contacts in your industry. So before you decide to relocate, make sure you are willing to put in the effort to start with a fresh slate.


2. Costs of moving can be pricey
Moving can be expensive, and if you've been job searching for a while, coming up with that kind of money might really put a strain on your finances. Some moving expenses can be deducted on your tax return, but you will still need to come up with a plan on how you will pay for your move in the likelihood that your moving expenses will come out of pocket. 

Remember that getting yourself and your stuff to a new city isn't the only financial cost to relocating. Living farther from your friends and family will generally mean more travel expenses to visit them. And depending on where you're moving to, costs like rent, transportation and even groceries could increase from what you're used to.


3. Opportunity for growth
Some careers are transferrable to nearly any city with the possibility of room for growth. However, many others are best suited to certain locations. You might have received a great job offer, but once you outgrow that job, you could be forced to relocate again. Make sure you understand what kinds of opportunities would be available to you in your new city, as well as where you see yourself career-wise in the next five to 10 years.

Are you ready to relocate for a job?
According to Statistics Canada, there are 3.3 unemployed people in Canada for every job vacancy, proving that the job market across the board is fierce. Having the ability to pack up your life and relocate to a new city for a job just might be the best way to find the kind of job that you're looking for.

But before making a final decision, make sure you make your own pros and cons list to come up with your own conclusion. Understand how it might impact your career in the future, what kind of city you are moving to and how you and your family will adapt to your new life.

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Money & Career

The pros and cons of relocating for work

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