The current job market means that scouring for a post may take you farther away from home base than ever before. For many professionals, that can mean taking the entire family from familiar terrain and selling off the house. According to Alden Cass, author of Bullish Thinking: The Advisor's Guide to Surviving and Thriving on Wall Street and a licensed clinical psychologist who works with Wall Street professionals, the situation has certainly been a common one for those in the finance field.
Uprooting the family and dealing with a house sale can add stress to an already stressful time. Often, families decide not to move children from a school or find it difficult for a mate to leave behind their job.
The answer—many finance execs are living near the new job and traveling back and forth to home on the weekends or maybe a few times a month, notes Cass. For more savvy professionals, they’ve managed to work out deals where they can work remotely from home for part of the time, he says. If you happen to be a particularly strong candidate, then you should make sure this is a part of the negotiation.
One big way to avoid the anxiety of an abrupt move is to stay ahead of the challenges at your current job, says Cass. Often, the writing’s on the wall when it comes to layoffs, even well before they actually happen. It’s always better to make decisions from a “position of power,” says Cass, and not to react abruptly to a layoff or firing.
“I am seeing clients who are trying to be proactive to seek safer pastures and seek safer locations," Cass says. "Many of my clients work on Wall Street, and quite a few of them have looked to South Florida, Texas and other parts of the country where it’s more affordable.”
Of course, moving to a new place sometimes means leaving behind an unsellable house elsewhere. According to Laurie Johnson, vice president of account management at Global Mobility Solutions, a full service relocation provider, relocation comes fraught with special challenges in today’s housing market. Johnson says that she’s seen some executives, when they can, resigning and returning home.
“It’s unfortunate, and my hope is that companies will increase relocation dollars to allow for more trips back home or more money for temporary housing until the old home sells," Johnson says.
If your new employer offers a sizeable relocation allowance, consider yourself lucky. Cass notes that given the current job landscape and the many people competing for positions, companies are offering little to no money for relocation packages.