5 types of relocation assistance your company should offer

Perhaps you’re creating your first corporate relocation policy. Perhaps you’re reevaluating your existing plan. Either way, you’re undoubtedly asking the same question: what types of relocation assistance should we include in our policy?



It’s a great question, now more than ever. As recruiting and retention continue to challenge employers, employees—including prospective ones—expect more in the way of benefits. Whether it’s health insurance, paid time off or relocation, they want to know that they’re getting the best.

So, what are the must-have types of relocation assistance? Here’s our top five picks—the essential core of every competitive relocation policy


1. Moving Services—i.e., the Transport of Household Goods  

Some relocating employees have tons of personal stuff. Others are more minimalist. Either way, you can bet those belongings are precious to them, and that moving them securely matters a whole big bunch. Therefore, one essential form of relocation assistance is the transport of household goods.

Ideally, your relocation company screens the moving companies that it partners with rigorously. And that it offers your employees a choice of transport options, from full-size vans to DIY trailer rentals—so everyone gets the type of move they prefer.


2. Transportation to the New Location 

Planes, trains or automobiles…no matter how your relocating employees choose to travel to their new location, your benefits should cover their travel costs and those of their dependents.

What about household pets? Ideally, your relocation policy is flexible enough to cover pet transport as an option, if an employee needs it. But that one’s up to you.


Stay up to date

Subscribe to the blog for the latest updates

3. Home Buying and Selling Assistance   

Obviously finding a great new place to live is of prime importance to relocating employees, which is why home buying and selling benefits are another policy essential. Most benefits cover closing costs, attorney fees—and comparable expenses for those who are renting rather than buying.

Thoughtful relocation companies should offer a carefully-screened network of experienced realtors—especially ones specialize in relocation—as well as leading mortgage lenders that may offer employees discounted interest rates.

Relative to this, most relocation policies cover one or more home-finding trip(s)—including travel costs, hotel stays and a meal allowance.

Why is this so important? Because the sooner your employees finalize their housing arrangements, the sooner they’ll get up to speed in their new position.


4. Short-term Housing

That said, buying and selling a home—or moving into a new rental—doesn’t always unfold as planned. For this reason, short-term housing is another essential form of relocation assistance, although some relocating employees never need to use it.

Fortunately, most full-service relocation companies provide short-term housing arrangements that make things easy for employees (no short-term apartment hunting needed!) and cost-effective for employers. For example, providers may have standing arrangements with Airbnb, Vrbo, short-term rentals and/or extended stay hotels.

Whatever the arrangement, the objective is the same: to allow relocating employees to get to work, despite the housing hold-ups.


5. Tax Gross ups

As you know, relocation benefits are taxable, and wow, do those taxes add up. Most employers cover the cost—a process known as paying tax gross-ups. When employers skimp on this particular type of relocation assistance, it will undercut the value of the even the most impressive relocation package.

But calculating these taxes accurately isn’t a snap. Ideally, your relocation provider has tax pros to handle this for you—plus cost-cutting solutions to offset these costs, so everyone comes out ahead.


…and One More Thing  


These five benefits are essential to a competitive relocation plan. But so is providing relocation assistance in the literal sense—that is, via live and virtual support to guide employees through the entire relocation process.


Beyond monetary benefits, your relocation provider should offer these two services:

  • Access to a dedicated relocation specialist to answer questions, resolve dilemmas, and generally light the way, and
  • A personalized relocation portal where employees can view their benefits and expenses…connect with vendors…and find helpful information about their new location.


At the end of the day, you want to provide your employees with more than competitive relocation benefits. You want to give them a great relocation experience—that will set them up for ongoing success. For more ideas on how to do just that, watch our 2-minute video.  

Human Resources Today