Applying For Jobs Out Of State? This Resume Tip Can Help

applying for jobs out of state

Your resume is extremely important in finding a job and is the biggest factor in whether you get the interview or not. Living in one state (or country) and applying for jobs out of state makes it even more vital.

And one of the biggest hurdles is how to list your location on your resume when applying for jobs in a different state.

A question on this topic was emailed to me by a reader last week:

Hi Biron. I’m living in San Francisco and trying to move to Denver. The problem I’m running into is that I’m not receiving any interviews and I’m guessing it’s because there are local applicants that are equally qualified. I believe I can interview better than them and prove myself but I need to get into the interviews. My address and phone number on my resume are a dead giveaway that I’m living in the Bay Area. Do you recommend that I lie on my resume to get a job interview?

How To Apply For Jobs Out Of State:

At first glance there are 2 options: Tell the truth or lie about your address

Let’s look at the pros and cons of both options so you know what you’re up against. Then keep reading because there’s a third option that works pretty well too and you won’t want to miss it.

Option #1: Lie On Your Resume

When applying for jobs out of state, one strategy is to use a friend or family member’s address in that city, or just list the city without a street address on your resume. Or make up an address. Lying on your resume will probably get you the initial phone interview, but there are a few problems with all of these tactics.

4 Potential Problems… 

  • You probably don’t have a local phone number to put on your resume. You can’t hide everything.
  • You’re beginning the interview process with a huge lie. Even if it doesn’t get uncovered, you’ll be more nervous during the process and it won’t feel as comfortable.
  • If everything goes well on a phone interview, they’ll invite you on a face to face interview and you’ll have to cover all of the travel expenses since the company thinks you’re living locally. Some companies do multiple rounds of face to face interviews!
  • And finally, when you’re offered a job, they’re probably going to mail the offer letter to the address you provided. Also if a company offers relocation assistance, you might lose out on that because they think you’re a local candidate.

Option #2: Tell The Truth And Put Your Out-Of-State Address

This option is simple, and chances are you’ve already tried it. Accept that some employers won’t want to interview you, but continue to list your full out-of-state address on your resume.

There’s one big drawback, which you probably already know…

Some companies only consider local candidates. This will limit the number of opportunities you’re able to interview for. Not every company will be open to interviewing you, even on the phone.

Still, I would try this option for a couple of weeks to start my job search. It’s a good place to start because it’s the safest, assuming you can get some companies willing to talk to you. The only risk is spending time applying for jobs and finding out you’re not getting enough responses or interviews.

If that happens, you’ll need to consider other options. That’s where option #3 comes in…

Option #3: Tell A White Lie (I Recommend This)

This option is great if you don’t want to tell a flat out lie, but you’re not getting enough interviews telling the truth on your resume.

Here’s what to do… Put your name and phone number on your resume, but don’t list an address. Where you’d normally put an address, instead say something like “Relocating to Denver in March 2017”. (replace ‘Denver’ with whichever city the job is in).

Using this approach to apply for jobs in a different city or state should get you a higher number of interviews without having to lie about where you currently live.

This is still a bit of a lie, since you’re probably not going to relocate without a job offer, but it’s also quite true- your goal is to find a job in the new city, and your plan is to relocate to that city if you can find a suitable position.

This will get you the greatest number of phone interviews and will keep your resume out of the garbage pile.

If you have an interview and they ask about this (they probably will), you can tell them you plan on relocating either way but you are trying to secure a job beforehand. That will put their mind at ease and quickly convince them you’re serious about finding a job in their city.

There’s one potential drawback with this option…

Just like Option #1, there’s a chance that you could lose out on relocation assistance if you say you’re moving to their city no matter what.

It’s not very likely but it’s possible.

With most companies, they’ll still offer to help if it’s a part of their benefits package though. Very few companies will try to weasel out of paying relocation assistance. The ones that do, you probably don’t want to work for.

So this method has a lot of potential and very little risk. I recommend giving it a try.

Now that you know what to do… you’re probably wondering how soon to start applying for jobs. If so, check out this article on timing your job search. I wrote it after a reader who is relocating from New York to Texas emailed me asking this exact question.

Also, make sure to leave a comment below if you have a question or if you’ve tried any of these options.

UPDATE: 

If you’re job searching in a new city, I think you’d love the step-by-step interview guide I just created. Each interview counts for a lot when you’re relocating; I’ve done it first-hand and know it’s definitely harder than the typical local job search. But it’s still doable! If you want to go into your next interview feeling 100% confident and well-prepared, you’re the type of person I had in mind when I created this guide. You can read about it here.

 

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Applying for Jobs in a New State

 

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Leave a Comment:

138 comments
Roger says February 18, 2014

I think I’ll try that cause I’m in the same situation, I want to relocate but would have a career first. Thanks and hope this works!!

Reply
Felicia says April 26, 2014

I am just curious because I already know the address for where I will be residing. Can I list that even though I’m not there until I move? Or should I use your advice and use the “Relocating to {insert city name, month year}”

Reply
    Biron Clark says April 26, 2014

    Hi Felicia-

    I’d feel comfortable putting the address you’ll be residing. This will simplify things and I don’t really see any problem with doing this.

    The only issue I could anticipate is if employers use that address to mail you a written job offer before you’re actually living there.

    Reply
Erin Cook says April 29, 2014

Can I just “make up” an address on a resume? In other words, if I apply for a position in Boston, but I’m living in Vermont, can’t I just say I live at 545 —- St., Cambridge/Boston/wherever? They aren’t going to drop by, they probably won’t mail you anything and almost everyone has a cell phone exchange that is nowhere near their address.

Reply
    Biron Clark says April 29, 2014

    Erin-

    Great question.

    It could work, but there are drawbacks too. Here’s an example, based on a colleague of mine:

    James (not his real name) was living in Boston and wanted to interview for a job in Jacksonville, FL. He lied and listed a Jacksonville address on his resume.

    He was invited to meet one employer face to face after passing the phone interview. He bought a plane ticket, flew down and interviewed, and then flew home to wait for feedback.

    A few days later, they told him that they liked him a lot but one hiring manager had been traveling the prior week and also wanted to meet him before they make a final decision. They asked him to come back in to meet with this last person.

    Because he lied, they assumed it would be easy for him to come back for another visit. If they had known he’s living in Boston, it’s very unlikely they’d make him do two separate face to face interviews.

    This is one drawback to keep in mind if you plan on lying. You can’t come clean later, and lies can lead to more lies as you try to keep your story straight. And in the example above, it caused a huge extra expense and travel headache for James.

    Reply
      Les Celian says July 9, 2017

      Did he actually get the job after making the second trip? If so the extra expense was worth it.

      Reply
Kat says July 4, 2014

How do you feel about lying about the reason for the move? I am thinking of lying saying I am relocating because my boyfriend found a job in said city, or I am moving to be closer to family. I want them to believe I will be moving there regardless. That way they know I am from out of state, and why I am currently am still working in another state. I am hoping this will give me more consideration. I’ve seen my current employer hire many people from out of state because of these reason. I feel like if you give no reason your resume is automatically overlooked, and the reason has to be better than just ‘because I like your city’ or ‘because I’m sick of the snow’

Reply
    Biron Clark says July 6, 2014

    I’d just tell them I’m moving for personal reasons and leave it at that. I don’t think you need to provide more detail on a resume. At the very least, they should want to phone interview you to find out why you’re moving. At that point, I’d just tell them I’m committed to moving and already have arrangements to do so (so that they don’t doubt you or worry that you’ll back out).

    Your way could work too- I’m not morally against telling a white lie, but I do know that lies during the interview process often lead to more lies, which can get you in trouble (being forced to lie more to cover up your first lie).

    If you feel your resume isn’t getting a lot of responses, feel free to add the additional info to increase the response rate. But I’d recommend at least trying for a few weeks without lying on the resume.

    Reply
Joyce says August 21, 2014

Applying for a job out of state. On my resume cover letter how would I ask for a drug test at the same time? I’m currently working & I do not have the flexability to take off work and fly back an forth.
Mr. Brian is aware that I am currently working. Thanks for all your help.

Reply
    Biron Clark says August 23, 2014

    Joyce-

    I don’t think you should mention a drug test on your cover letter, period. Usually they’ll do a phone interview, and then if they like you they’ll interview you face-to-face. At that point, you could remind them that you’re flying out to meet them, and you’d like to meet as many people as possible and handle any administrative things such as a drug test as well, so that you don’t have to fly out twice.

    That’s how I’d do it.

    Reply
Jeniece Carter says September 28, 2014

I have recently graduated Graduate school and therefore am unemployed and have had to move back home. I am very open to relocating for any job opportunity. How do I communicate I have no strings where I am and I am in transition?

Reply
    Biron Clark says September 29, 2014

    You could mention all of this in a cover letter, or simply put something on the top of your resume that says ‘open to relocation’.

    Be careful though- don’t sound too open to everything… It could actually be seen as a red flag to employers if you’re looking to move anywhere, for whatever job you find.

    I’d suggest picking a few cities that attract you, and applying for jobs within those cities. When a hiring manager asks, have a few reasons prepared to share for why you’re interested in their city.

    This will sound a lot better than saying “Yeah I’m applying to 25 different cities and I don’t really care which one I move to”

    Reply
Jasmine Johnson says October 16, 2014

Hi! Thanks for your article. I hope it helps.

I’m trying to move to the Mid-Atlantic region from Georgia. I’m a recent graduate and I am trying to move to be closer to family and friends. My fiance is in the military and is stationed in Maryland. Can I use his address on applications? Or should I just stick to option #3 and just mention that I plan on relocating to ___ city in ____ 2014/15? I read another article where they suggested mentioning the possible relocation in the cover letter as well. I just added that line and I hope I get a few call backs and phone interviews.

Again, thanks for the tips! I hope they help.

Reply
    Biron Clark says October 16, 2014

    Jasmine-

    I’d definitely use your Fiance’s address. Having a local address will draw less questions and will make it likely more hiring managers see your resume. Mentioning relocation on the cover letter is a great idea too.

    Reply
Ruth says February 28, 2015

Hi Biron,

Thanks for all your suggestions. I am trying to relocate to Md from Pa. I am currently employed and I am looking for new employment with another company. I too, am not having any luck with getting out of state interviews. If I use a Md address on my resume, should I not list the state where my current job is in? My resume shows the company name and state I work in… Thank you for your input.

Ruth

Reply
    Biron Clark says March 1, 2015

    Yes, if you’ve chosen to use a MD address, I’d eliminate the city/state info for your resume (for all positions, to keep things consistent). Plenty of resumes don’t show this info anyway.

    Also have you tried simply putting a sentence saying:

    ‘Relocating to MD in June 2015’ (or replace June with any month)

    I’d experiment with this too.

    Reply
Ken says March 21, 2015

Hello Biron,
I have a state job and am looking to relocate to Alaska. However, I have one more year to go before I am vested into the retirement program. When do you think I should start applying for a position in Alaska, is it too early to start now?

Reply
    Biron Clark says March 21, 2015

    Hi Ken,

    If you’ve made up your mind that you’re not going to relocate or change jobs until you’re vested into the retirement program, I’d say 12 months out is too early to start applying.

    I wrote this post recently about timing your job search, it might be relevant here: http://careersidekick.com/timing-your-job-search-when-should-you-begin/

    I usually recommend searching 3-4 months in advance. Since Alaska is relatively remote and distant from other US states, you might add a month or two. And you can add more leeway if you have a very specialized skillset within your field (a PhD, a lot of experience in a narrow niche, etc), because jobs become more difficult to find as they’re higher in level or narrower in scope.

    But if you aren’t hunting for relatively high level jobs in a relatively narrow field, I’d say 3-6 months of lead time is an appropriate timeframe.

    Hopefully this info helps! I guess the short answer is that there are very few cases where starting a job search a full year in advance makes sense. The article I linked to above explains a bit about why, and what can happen if you apply too early.

    Reply
Ken says March 22, 2015

Thanks Biron, the article in the link you provided really helped. I am an IT tech, with workstation, server, and VMWare experience.

Reply
Joseph says April 28, 2015

Hey Biron,

I plan on doing this. That is lying, about my address and I plan on getting a phone that has the area code of the place I intend to move to and eventually find work. So that takes care of the phone and where I live issue. I don’t care if I have to pay for expensive flights back and forth – so that too is not an issue. My only question is this: what happens if I pass the phone interview and then I get invited to come in and talk face to face with them and then lets say I pass that too. Then they say something like “Congrats you got the job!” – I am assume it is at this point they conduct a background check as protocol mandates, won’t the background check ruin all of this? Like won’t my social security number show up as well as my address or state where I currently reside?

What can be done about this? Otherwise there is no point in any of your advice as a background check will end it all right then and there.

Reply
    Biron Clark says May 6, 2015

    Well, I’m not an expert on background checks. But here’s my thought-

    Don’t lie more than you have to. If you’re going to use a local address on your resume, don’t act like you’ve lived in the town your whole life. Just tell a white lie and say you relocated recently, when in truth you’ll relocate after securing the job.

    Having your background check return a mailing address in the state you’re leaving shouldn’t be a big deal. Companies conduct background checks to check on employment dates and criminal records mostly.

    Reply
Elizabeth says June 26, 2015

Hi Biron,

I have been applying for jobs out of state and forgot it mention that I would be relocating there. I fear that I have not heard back because I placed my out of state address on my resume. A friend stated to write a follow-up email checking in about my application materials and stating that I have relocated . What are your thoughts on this?

Reply
    Biron Clark says June 26, 2015

    There are a lot of reasons why a company might not respond to an application, so it’s hard to know whether location had anything to do with their lack of a response.

    Still, it can’t hurt to follow up and mention that you’ve relocated. I’d give it a shot.

    I’d almost see this as an “excuse” to follow up. It’ll remind them that you’re interested in their company and that you still have them in mind.

    Reply
MIchele says July 15, 2015

Hi Biron!
I am moving out of state and trying to land a job there before I move. I am taking your advice and updating my resume to say “Relocating to Denver, Colorado in September 2015” – so, thank you for that advice! My question is – while I am in the process of updating my resume, should I remove a job that is not relevant to my line of work? In the past, I have applied for jobs that required my last 10 years of employment be listed on my resume. I have been in my line of work for the last 7 years, so one job on my resume is a janitorial job that I worked while attending college. Should I remove it – and just have 7 years of employment listed? This will be a benefit, because it will free up some space to list job duties in more detail…I’m a medical coder, so I want to put things on there that apply to ICD-10 training, which is a really important attribute that I know many employers are seeking. I appreciate your input! Thanks!

Reply
    Biron Clark says July 16, 2015

    Hi Michele,

    Absolutely, 100%, you should remove the unrelated janitorial job from the resume. It’ll make your profile more appealing, and like you said you’ll be able to put more relevant info from the past 7 years.

    Best,
    Biron

    Reply
Jenny says August 3, 2015

Hi Biron,
I am a stay at home mother re-entering the workforce. My problem is that while I was looking up current contact info for past companies I have worked for I found out that 2 of my past companies don’t seem to be in business any longer or have been taken over by another company. What will happen during my background check? Do you know if they will still show up on my background check?

Reply
    Biron Clark says August 3, 2015

    Hey Jenny,

    The employment verification piece of your background check is usually as simple as them calling your past companies and asking to verify job title, dates, etc. with someone in HR.

    This might not always be the case but usually is.

    If an employer is going to run a background check and the company names are on your resume, I’d just go ahead and let them figure it out. Be honest if they ask. If you can’t provide a phone number for a company, just explain that they went out of business.

    I guess the short answer to your question is that I can’t see this being an issue whatsoever. You should be fine 100%

    Reply
Meka says August 20, 2015

I have a different situation. I am moving in faith. So I will not have a job but plan to stay at a airbnb or extended stay while I look for work. Is it ok to make up an address for that reason as I will be there in Dallas just not a stable address.

Reply
    Biron Clark says August 20, 2015

    Hi Meka,

    If you make up a random address you might run into trouble when they go to mail the offer letter. The last company I accepted an offer from mailed it to my home.

    How much would a local PO box cost? That could work.

    Or ask the airbnb owner or hotel if you can receive mail. I bet you can.

    Does this help at all? I hope so. Good luck with your move and job hunt too!

    Reply
Peeta says August 28, 2015

Hey Biron,
I was curious about the job application that you have to fill out for most positions. You have to indicate an address there, and I don’t have any other address aside from my home address that I currently reside in. What do you do about that?

Reply
    Biron Clark says August 29, 2015

    Hi Peeta,

    Great question. I guess if there’s a form that needs to be filled out, you’re stuck and have to use your home address. Unless you have a family member that’d let you use their address.

    Just make it clear on your cover letter that you have plans to relocate, so they’re not concerned that you’ll flake out.

    Reply
      Fernando says October 5, 2015

      I was going to ask what Peeta asked. The problem with application tracking systems is that they provide a score for every application submitted to a position, and there are some “disqualifying” questions. The recruiter can ask the system to just provide scores for local candidates, as they are not offering relocation, and all non-locals are out luck. Since I’m willing to pay for my own relocation, would an outright lie about the address work? (understanding the previously mentioned drawbacks of doing so) What do you think?

      Reply
        Biron Clark says October 5, 2015

        Yes, it could work. Here are the 2 major obstacles to be aware of: If it’s a 2 or 3 step interview process, you might be caught flying or driving back and forth a lot, since they think you’re local. And if you’re offered the job, they’ll likely mail your offer letter to the address you gave. As long as you’re fine with these risks, go ahead. It will definitely get you more initial conversations and phone interviews.

         

        There’s also an alternative. Get a PO box in the city you’re interviewing in and use that address. There’s a way to write an address so that it doesn’t seem like a PO Box. I first read about it in the book 4 Hour Work Week: http://amzn.to/1PfROWt .

        You basically put your name on the first line, then put the street address of the post office, then instead of putting the PO box # (let’s say you’re 307), you’d put “Suite 307” or “#307” so it looks like an apartment.

         

        If somebody Googles the address they’ll see it’s a post office though. But it’d be pretty easy to explain and just say you use that for all incoming mail.

        Reply
Megan says September 9, 2015

Hi Biron,
I will be relocating from MN to WI for personal reasons. I am just beginning to apply to jobs. By what I have been reading you suggest taking out your local address and putting in the city and state that you are applying to? So if I were to get a call from one of the jobs do I tell them over the phone where I live now, and my plans to relocate? Would you suggest putting “relocating to Appleton October 2015” or just putting Appleton, WI on my resume and delete my current MN address? I have an apartment set up for move in on 11/1/2015, but can move in 10/1/2015 if I need to. Any help would be appreciated.
Thanks

Reply
    Biron Clark says September 10, 2015

    Hi Megan,

    I’d definitely put “relocating to Appleton October 2015”

    It’ll be enough to grab a company’s attention and keep your resume out of the throw-away pile.

    Then you’ll have a chance to explain further when you talk to them on the phone (they’ll probably ask about this). Tell them you already have an apartment set up and you’re 100% sure you’re relocating. They’ll be pleasantly surprised that you already have a plan in place.

    Good luck with the move.

    Reply
Kelly says October 4, 2015

I had a job I was fired from 10 yrs ago. Do I still need to list it?

Reply
    Biron Clark says October 4, 2015

    On a resume? absolutely not. You can always choose what to include and not include on your resume. That’s your choice.

    The place where you’re “supposed” to list every job is when you’re asked to fill out a work history form, usually during part of an application process.

    Fortunately, most of those don’t forms don’t include 10 years of history anyway so you should be fine.

    Reply
Chris says November 1, 2015

Hi Biron,
I am trying to move from CO to SoCal, I am an IT Manager and to keep my options open I am applying for jobs in Denver and in SoCal. I get good responses here in Denver, but pretty much zero responses from California. I started adding to my address that I will be relocating to that city/area in about 6-8 weeks (based on the date when I apply for a job). Example: Relocating to San Diego in December 2015. Still, no responses from any possible employer even though I am definitely a match for the position based on my skills and experience. I also mention that I do not expect a moving package and that I am available for interviews like a local candidate and that I am available to start work within 2-3 weeks. I am not sure what to do next. I was thinking of using a Marriott Residence INN address close to where I apply – as I would use that one anyway when relocating. I also picked up a SoCal Google Voice number. Not sure really about what else to do. I do not want to move without having employment secured.

Reply
    Biron Clark says November 2, 2015

    Hey Chris,

    It sounds like you’re doing everything right, even down the details about being available to interview, not wanting a relocation package, etc. How many jobs have you applied for? If you feel you’ve applied extensively, try the Marriott address. I like that as a next step if the current approach isn’t working. Also, just food for thought, but it’s entirely possible that the SoCal market is just more competitive and employers are less motivated to hire. I don’t know why nobody is responding. Neither do you. Don’t assume it’s due entirely to location, because it may just be that there are 30 applicants for every job in SoCal due to the market itself. If you try using a local address, you’ll at least know the answer to this! Good luck!

    Reply
Anonymous says November 2, 2015

Hello Biron,
I’m working on my cover letter and mentioning I’ll be relocating to _______ but I am stuck on the explanation as to why I’m relocating. I lived in Texas and Southern California and would like to return to either locations. I currently live in Montgomery AL so how do I convey I want to move back because simply put “this place sucks and my job sucks”excuse the language. Thank you

Reply
    Biron Clark says November 2, 2015

    I’d say that you’re from the area, you have family/friends in the area, and you’re eager to return home. This is the #1 thing that companies like to hear to put their minds at ease. Because their big concern is that if you’re moving to an area where you don’t know anybody, you might hate it and leave soon after. Or even worse, you might change your mind and never make the move after they offer you the job.

    Reply
ajlam says November 4, 2015

Thank you for writing this article. I have been living and working in Phx for 10 years (went to college here too) and looking to move to Los Angeles, where I was born and have family. So if I were to mention this and that I’m looking to return home/relocate soon or a specific date… how/where would I incorporate it into my cover letter? Is it more of an opener since my Phx address is listed at the top and they may not read passed the 1st paragraph or it is more of a closer after discussing my qualifications?

Reply
    Biron Clark says November 4, 2015

    Hey Ajlam,

    I’d put it near the top if you’re using your PHX address up top, since they’ll be wondering what the story is. I wouldn’t put it as the very first thing. Use that space for explaining your background, why the job caught your eye, why you’re excited to learn about their company. But explain your situation soon after, so they’re not left wondering.

    Reply
      ajlam says November 13, 2015

      Thank you for your advice!

      Reply
Yuki says November 4, 2015

Hi, Byron:
I want to relocate from SF Bay Area to Connecticut. Though I have been applying for jobs (college counseling field), I have not received any responses from any schools yet. Even though I sent a follow up email to them, I still have not heard back from them. Is it true that applying jobs out of state is harder because employers would rather hire local applicants since they assume that local applicants already know Connecticut school systems? Also, I did not mention about relocation, that is why I have not received the response?
Please advise.
Thank you.

Reply
    Biron Clark says November 5, 2015

    yes, it’s true that it’s harder to get a job in a different city. For the reason you mentioned. You can try mentioning relocation. I don’t know if that’s why you didn’t get a response though. It could be your resume, or something unrelated to relocation. There are a lot of variables so it’s hard to know. But I’d recommend mentioning your willingness to relocate.

    Reply
Magda says November 5, 2015

Great post. I’m going through some of these issues as well..

Reply
Brian says November 5, 2015

I just found my dream job in my hometown, again. It’s been posted 3x this year and I’m finally ready to go for it. It’s only 8 hrs away so driving there on a whim is an option for an interview.

I appreciate your comments to ANONYMOUS on 11/2/15 ab0ut mentioning family/friends and being eager to return home. That fits me to a T. I think I will put the “Relocating ….” on the cover letter and all actual information on the online application. I would hate to know a “white lie” ruined my chances at this.

Reply
sarah says November 9, 2015

Hello byron,
I am an African, a Nigerian. I am trying to relocate to another to search for jobs. i.e I don’t have one yet or invited for an interview. I am not getting lucks with out of current state interview and am not getting any in my current state either. What do I need to do?

Reply
    Biron Clark says November 10, 2015

    Where are you trying to relocate to? If it’s another country, people are probably concerned about Visa issues.

    Reply
Brian says November 10, 2015

Shouldn’t the resume JUST tell your work history and maybe education? I think putting my actual mailing address on the resume is the right way, and using the cover letter to convey “Relocating to…”

Reply
Justin says December 8, 2015

okay here is my problem, hoping for the correct way to go about this..
I live in California on the border of Oregon. As some may know, there isn’t much job opportunity in the North Eastern part of California. The driving distance is probably about an hour to a more Dense populated city, Klamath Falls, Oregon. That leads me to my question. As a California Resident would I be able to apply for jobs in Oregon? Would I need to have an Oregon Drivers license? Would I need to have an Oregon Address? Or if you might know the answer to all my questions and have advise for what I should do the correct way. I would greatly Appreciate your help.

Best Regards,
Justin H. C.

Reply
    Biron Clark says December 8, 2015

    Hey Justin-
    You can absolutely live in one state and work in the other. You could start applying for jobs now. In my last job many people lived in New Hampshire and commuted to our office in Massachusetts. Things might get a bit complicated with state income taxes, but it’s doable. I think there are some regions of the country where this is very common even. I think Portland, OR and Vancouver, WA is an example. Good luck!

    Reply
Jonathan says December 11, 2015

Biron,
Thank You for writing this and laying out the various options and pros & cons for each. This issue has been a challenge for me and I look forward to option #3 for opportunities in my city of interest: Atlanta.

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Oz says December 15, 2015

Hey Biron,

So what would you recommend folks do if they are trying to move countries. In this day and age you would think life would not be so hectic. I am a single guy who put my PHd on hold for personal reasons and am looking to relocate to singapore or australia for work because it is closer to where my family is (both these places are closer to my home country). What can someone who requires visa do in such a situation?

Reply
    Biron Clark says December 15, 2015

    Hey there!

    I think the visa situation varies a ton depending on country. I think most countries would require you to have employment before obtaining a work visa. Your employer could help you with the process if you find one. Try looking online for companies in Singapore or Australia that hire foreign workers. A few google searches might yield something. If you currently work for a company with international locations it’s certainly worth looking into as well. I wish I could help more, I’m not an expert on international relocation or employment. The experience I do have is helping non-US citizens obtain work and visas in the US. And even there my knowledge is probably average for somebody in my field.

    Reply
      Marcos says October 7, 2016

      Hi, Biron! Thanks for the information.
      I am a Mexican citizen and willing to relocate to Chicago. I have family there and even stayed there for almost 2 months recently. I am wondering if it is ok to put their address on the applications. The thing is that I can apply for a TN visa-type having a job related to my degree (Economist) and only need a letter of employment from the company/organization (no processing or payments for the company). I believe that sorting the address thing out would help me to get to the interviewing stage. The best, Marcos

      Reply
        Biron Clark says October 8, 2016

        Hey Marcos,

        You’re welcome. Glad you liked it.

        I’m not sure what you should do in this case. Employers will want to know right away about your visa situation.

        I might do this.. I think it’s a good idea to use your family’s address in Chicago. I doubt you’ll get interviews if you put a Mexican address.

        BUT THEN- I strongly recommend you be upfront right at the beginning of any phone interview and say “listen, I’m a Mexican citizen. I split my time between Mexico and Chicago and as soon as I have full time employment here I’ll live in Chicago full time and secure a TN visa.”

        Let me know if this helps!

        Reply
Ivan says December 19, 2015

Hello Biron,
Bear with me as I try to explain my situation. I currently live in NJ with family and while I physically work for the North American branch of a European car company importer/distributor, I am outsourced through another company whereby my benefits and pay is handled through them. I worked for this very same car company several years back before leaving them and moving to NC about nine years ago. At that time, I was an actual employee of theirs. Now for personal and family reasons dear to me, I find that I need to move away from NJ and so I need to look for employment in NC. On my resume, I list that I work for this car company as my employer and NOT the company who pays me because they have nothing to do, or say with the nature of the particular work I do day in and day out. Also, I was hired to perform one job at this car company when I started, but for the last year, I have been tasked to work a portion of my day in a another department for which I have experience. How do I structure or restructure this into my resume? Thanks for your help.

Reply
    Biron Clark says December 19, 2015

    Hey Ivan,

    I agree with your decision to list the car company, not the outsourcing company, on your resume. As for working a portion of your day in a different department, it could be a good thing on your resume. Continue to list your main responsibilities from the last few years (if you’re still doing them even a little bit), and also mention that you were given additional responsibilities and now split your time between 2 departments. This looks great. Managers don’t ask terrible workers to help out in additional areas. Also if one of the 2 areas you’re working in is more closely related to what you WANT to be doing, you can play that up and emphasize it. So if the new area you’re helping out in is your passion, put more info about that on your resume. Or vice versa. Customize it for whatever jobs you’re applying for! Does this help at all?

    Reply
      Ivan says December 20, 2015

      Excellent Biron! You seem to understand where I am. It certainly helps. Thank you!
      -Ivan

      Reply
Mike says December 26, 2015

Biron,

I am currently employed in the healthcare IT industry in SoCal and looking to move to Texas due to high cost of living in CA. Ive had couple phone interviews (Always using home address) and when asked why TX, i tell them i am interested in your company due to your size, reputation. … and the second reason is more personal which is home ownership in difficult in CA and general cost of living… Do you think mentioning that is a turn off ? Ive used that excuse in about 3 of them and that was the end of it!
Also, what other excuse can I use as we really dont have family in TX. My sole purpose is cheaper living and affording a house for my family.

Thanks a bunch!! Your assistance is greatly appreciated.

Reply
    Biron Clark says December 27, 2015

    Hi Mike,
    I think the mistake youre making is framing it negatively.. highlighting the bad aspects of CA that you want to escape. That doesn’t do much to convince a company that you’ll stay in TX for the long haul. You might need to try a white lie. I might say that Ive visited TX multiple times and loved it, and decided if I don’t relocate now, I’ll be too settled in the future. That implies ‘I plan on staying in TX’! I might also say I have family in the east and want to be closer to them. You might face a casual followup question about this though. Not because they will doubt you, but more likely as an attempt to make small talk and get to know you.

    Reply
      Mike says December 27, 2015

      Biron,

      I appreciate your help. You opened my eyes to some items that indeed might be causing the problem of not moving forward.

      However i want to see your take on this:
      By letting them know that your moving out of state regardless, do you think your salary negotiations and moving expenses are now practically none? Them knowing your moving for sure…
      Your thoughts?

      Appreciate it as always!

      Reply
        Biron Clark says December 27, 2015

        Hey Mike,

        Those are good points. For salary negotiation, you should always have some leverage. Moving out of state doesn’t mean that they’re the only company you could work for. So I don’t think relocation should impact that. I do think there’s a chance you’d lose out on potential relocation assistance. Not with every company, but with some.

        Since you’re getting interviews already, I’d keep it simple and keep doing what you’re doing. No need to say you’re relocating no matter what. I think you’re on the right track, if you just change the reasons for why you want to relocate.

        If you present yourself the right way while interviewing, and sound confident in your skillset and ability to find a job whether it’s with their company or another, I doubt you’ll lose out on relocation assistance. I wouldn’t want to work for a company that uses any of the above as a way to weasel out of paying to help you relocate anyway (if they normally offer some sort of package).

        Reply
candy says January 28, 2016

Relocating to another state
My husband has already relocated because of a new job offer I’m still in my state employed. So how would I start off my resume I plan on relocating the first of March 2016 I already have a address to where I’m relocating but what should I put for my last job experience I’m still employed in my state but I have given them notice do I put still employed when it ask from- ended on the application and another question that I’m a certified nursing assistant and the state I am applying for say I have to be certified in that state but I’m already in the process of transferring my license

Reply
    Biron Clark says February 1, 2016

    Hi Candy,

    List your current job in your current state, and on the resume put ‘Relocating to ___ in March 2016’. It’s 100% true by the sound of things. Your husband already got a job and everything! And say you’re still employed on the resume. Giving notice doesn’t mean you’re unemployed, it just means you notified them of your intention to leave.
     
    I might save the conversation on Certifications for the phone interview. Or put your current certification on your resume and write ‘in the process of transferring to (new state).”

    Reply
      candy says February 2, 2016

      Thanks , Biron

      Reply
Martin says January 30, 2016

Hi Biron, I have a question:

I moved from San Diego, CA to Michigan (my hometown) with my wife (whom is from San Diego). I lived there for 4 years and now we are thinking of moving back. On my resume? Should I use my old San Diego address (I have my mail forwarded to my current address in Michigan) or should I use your advice and put “Relocating to SD in June 2015”? I am not sure since I used to live there for years and just moved a few months ago. My only concern is that if I do use my old San Diego addresses or even my friends address there, when they contact me I’d probably say something like: “I still live in San Diego but have been in Michigan for the last few months to be with my family” or we have moved to Michigan but are planning to move back home to California. Any advice?

Thanks a lot.

Reply
    Biron Clark says February 1, 2016

    Hey Martin,

    I think I’d probably put the San Diego address, and tell companies you’re splitting time between San Diego and Michigan right now and looking to transition back to San Diego 100%.

    That answer shouldn’t cause any concern whatsoever in my opinion.

    Reply
candy says February 2, 2016

Thanks , Biron

Reply
William says February 19, 2016

Biron,
I will be closing on a home (under contract and set to close 1 March) and will be relocating to my new area with or without an offer. Moving from NC to Maryland. What would you recommend in this situation? I have currently listed I am relocating and will be in the area no later than…, but I feel it may discourage potential employers. I do not need relocation assistance and can make myself available for interviews at no cost to an organization. Should I use my new address since it is only a few weeks away?

Thanks for your time.
Kindest Regards,
William

Reply
    Biron Clark says February 20, 2016

    Hey William,

    Absolutely, I’d start using the new address on your job applications starting now. Good luck!

    Reply
      William says February 21, 2016

      Biron,
      Great! Thanks again for your time.

      Reply
Tracy says February 22, 2016

HIf I indicate I’m moving to Ohio at the end of March, in an interview – how does one go about bringing up a discussion of possible relocation reimbursements?

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    Biron Clark says February 22, 2016

    Hi! I’d ask at the end of a second interview. (Asking in the first interview might make it seem like you’re just looking for any old company that’ll pay for relocation.. not the image you want to portray). Toward the end of the second conversation you have with them, I’d ask whether they provide any type of relocation assistance. I like that phrase, and they’ll know what you mean.

    Reply
A.G says March 1, 2016

Hello,

I was asked the question below. How should I answer the question truthfully if it depends on a job offer? Is this an indication that they wont provide relocation expenses. Thanks.
 
Are you planning to relocate to the Dallas area? If so, can you please provide a timeline for your relocation?

Reply
    Biron Clark says March 1, 2016

    Hi! That’s a tough one. I might tell them I’m in an active job search looking for employment in the Dallas area, and I’m prepared to relocate as soon as I find a suitable position.
     
    For relocation expenses, it’s hard to tell. They might be trying to get out of having to pay. Try to have one interview, wait to hear feedback, and assuming it’s positive, you can ask what their policy is on relocation reimbursement.

    Reply
mc says March 4, 2016

I am not certain where you are getting your information, but
good topic. I need to spend a while learning
much more and understanding more about this before starting my job search or relocating to a new city.

Reply
linda says March 11, 2016

Hi Biron
Any suggestion when the job posting says “must have a valid South Carolina drivers license” and I live in TN? I am wanting to move to Charleston, SC but all of the government jobs I want to apply for (I work in government already) say I need to have a SC license…any suggestions?

Reply
    Biron Clark says March 11, 2016

    Hi Linda,

    I’m not an expert in government jobs but when I see that type of thing, I figure it means they only want to employ somebody that has a valid license in their state. That’s different than a requirement to interview. I’d just follow the other advice above, and if they ask, say you’re planning on relocating and acquiring an in-state license as soon as you’ve secured a position. Does this make sense? Do you disagree in how I’m reading it?
     
    Edit: To elaborate, I guess what I’m saying is this: If I’m looking for jobs and I read that, I’m not thinking “oh, I can’t apply, damn”. I’m thinking “Okay, if I accept this job they expect me to get/have a local driver’s license.” Again I could be way wrong but I’d continue as usual until I found out differently.

    Reply
Mike says March 15, 2016

Hi Biron,
I am trying to find a job in California. I currently live in Connecticut. I’ve been searching for jobs for about 3 months now with no call backs. On my cover letter I explaineded why I am relocating. I am relocating for friends, family and I have lived in the area in the past. I think I am being passed over because of my location. To get a call back my family is going move to California within 3 months while I still work at my current job. Besides relocating soon on my resume is there anything else I can do to get an interview before I get a local address? I really don’t want to lie to get a call back, but it seems like what I need to do. I am IT guy and fully qualified for every position I apply for.

Reply
    Biron Clark says March 15, 2016

    Hey Mike,

    3 months is a long time for no interviews. I’d change something immediately. The next natural step would be to try saying”Relocating to CA in May 2016″ (just an example). And after that you could lie but only you can decide if you’re comfortable with that. You asked what else you could do though. You could try to find a couple of good recruiters in the local area you’re moving to and contact them to see if they’re able to help. If you have an in-demand skillset they might be able to connect you with companies and make sure your situation comes across clearly. It’d also be an opportunity to ask about the demand for your skillset, their thoughts on your resume, etc. Just make sure you find a good reputable company because there are some HORRIBLE recruiters out there and many of them have found their way into tech/IT.

    Reply
Ann says March 26, 2016

I went to professional school in SF and doing a one-year stint of a post-graduate training program which ends July 1st (which is very common in my field). I am applying to jobs in SF and I feel like it’s probably unnecessary to explain why I’m moving back to SF and don’t want to waste space in the cover letter, but I’m worried that putting my current FL address in the online application tracking systems could be filtering me out. I have only been seriously job applying for the past 2 to 3 weeks so I might be too impatient. I do have a family member’s address that I do use to get mail but I don’t want to be looking dishonest/confusing either when it’s obvious that I’m in FL because my program isn’t finished yet. Any advice would appreciated! Thanks

Reply
    Biron Clark says March 28, 2016

    I’d use the family address in SF. Just explain on the phone that you’re only in FL for the post-graduate program and then you’re headed home to SF to work. I think that’s pretty normal in terms of education programs… to go somewhere but not consider it your home, and to plan on going back to your actual home immediately after you graduate.

    Reply
JR says April 12, 2016

Hi there,

I am looking for jobs in the LA-area and currently live in Boston. I have quite a few family members and friends in LA, but I don’t want to completely lie and use their address to pretend I live there already. Would it be OK to use their LA address on whatever electronic applications require it, but on my resume say “moving to Los Angeles in June 2016,” and explain in my cover letter that I am moving in X month and have family there? I’m not sure if that would seem like I’m lying or if it would show that I have a network to stay with as I get settled in LA.

Reply
    Biron Clark says April 12, 2016

    Hi there…

    I think what you suggested is good idea. You’ll get through the automated parts of the process, without telling a lie that’ll be tough to recover from in a phone conversation.

    Best of luck!

    Reply
Habeeb says April 13, 2016

Hi Biron,
I am currently live in Boston and looking to move to LA by the end of August 2016,
I am currently attending school in Boston for MBA , but I can take all the classes online .
So my questions
1- do I have to write in my resume that I am online student ?
2- I wrote my friend address (LA address) on my resume as a mailing address , but in the work experience it shows that I am still work in Boston,, so what you think?
3- since my plan is to move the last week in August 2016, what do you think is the best time to start applying for Jobs?

Thank you in advance !!

Reply
    Biron Clark says April 13, 2016

    A couple of Boston comments in a row! Love it (I’m a Boston native)
     
    1. No. It’s your business whether you choose to disclose the format of your courses.
     
    2. If you’re still working in Boston then you probably should remove the address on your resume and say “Relocating to LA in August 2016”. Option 3 in the article. It’s a great method.
     
    3. I wrote this article on timing your job search… it should give you a general idea of when to begin looking: http://careersidekick.com/timing-your-job-search-when-should-you-begin/

    Reply
Habeeb says April 13, 2016

Biron,
Thank you so much!

Reply
Marissa Friscia says April 16, 2016

Hi Biron,

I am Marissa Friscia. I am looking for a new career opportunity, as I am looking to relocate to the Greater Los Angeles, CA area, but not sure how I should approach my address since I am in Naples, FL. I have been getting phone interviews and some onsite interviews, but it seems as though they have not been working out for me. I have been looking into temporary agencies, such as Adecco, Office Team, Aerotek, TEKSystems, and Kforce in the Los Angeles, CA area, but when I talk to the recruiters there, they tell me it would be best to physically live in Los Angeles, CA to even do an interview there. I am thinking of taking that leap of faith to move to Los Angeles, CA because that is where I want to be. My question is on my resume, should I not put an address down at all or should I put down that I am relocating to Los Angeles, CA on xx/xx/2016?

Thanks,

Marissa Friscia

Reply
Daisy says April 24, 2016

First of all, everyone, don’t come to Colorado! Just as a quick piece of advice. It’s soooo expensive here and its totally not worth it. The average cost of rent is almost at $1,4oo/mo here in the Denver Metro Area. Ive been living here my whole life and I came across this article in my attempt to leave CO and move to Texas. I Have a question as well; I am young, and don’t have a lot of work experience. I am desperate to leave CO and I’m trying to find a job in Texas as quickly as possible. Will the potential employer frown upon an out-of-state candidate on top of only being in my early 20’s? Also, I have no family whatsoever in TX. What would I do once I got the job there (If i got the job). Do people live in hotels while apartment hunting? Do apartments take people who haven’t started a job yet? How does the whole finding a job out of state thing really work??? Thanks!!

Reply
    Biron Clark says April 24, 2016

    Hey Daisy!! Good questions.

     
    I heard Texas is a good value for cost of living so maybe you’ll enjoy it there. No state income tax either. For housing, you could look at Extended Stay hotels, they offer weekly or monthly rates. Or try AirBnb. Or ask some apartments. They’d likely just want to see proof you can pay rent (income or savings). They’re just concerned about getting a renter who cannot pay.

     

    You asked if being in your early 20’s will hurt you. It’s not age that matters. It’s skill set, and whether your skills are in-demand and hard to find. If you have a common skillset that is readily available in their local area, you’re going to have a tougher time. And you might have to pay to relocate yourself. So it’s not age, but it’s the industry you’re in, the work and accomplishments on your resume, etc. It’s tough but look at it from their perspective- if you’re applying for a job that thousands of people in the local area can do, a company is not going to pay for you to relocate. They might still consider you if you’re willing to relocate on your own though!

     

    Quick tip: Find a company that’s growing fast and has many openings. They’re likely to consider an out-of-state job candidate as one of the people they hire. Example: A software company is growing fast and needs to hire 10 sales reps.
     

    I hope this helps, good luck and feel free to reply back if you have more questions.

    -Biron

    Reply
      Dee Mobley says May 17, 2016

      Hello Biron!!

      I’m relocating to Fayetteville, NC from Jacksonville,FL. On my resume, I do have my current address, however, within my Cover Letter I do state that I’m relocating to Fayetteville on my own dime. Is it possible for you give me pointers on the section that I state my relocation??

      I am humbled to be applying to this position of Administrative Assistant, and I do hope you find my Cover Letter and Resume up to par to fill the position. I am permanently relocating to Fayetteville on May 30th, 2016.

      Reading over the job description for the position, I realized that I am highly capable of being the employee that you need. As you will see on my attached resume, I have more than seven years’ experience in Transportation Management and Logistics. Within those seven years, I’ve arranged everything from moving cargo via Rotary AND Truck. I’ve manifested over 7,000 passengers for Rotary Wing flights all over Southern Afghanistan and have moved well over 2,000 tons of military and civilian cargo in just one year alone. I’ve created THOUSANDS of Excel spreadsheets containing information that’s necessary for high ranking officials to locate personnel and cargo. I’ve conducted PowerPoint presentations to educate and inform soldiers and civilians about the necessary steps and procedures to request assts and manifest for flights. Everything I have done, I take complete pride in it all.

      Additionally, I adapt to my surroundings very well. No matter which way changes may come, I will conform to them and excel in doing so. I specialize in customer service and documentation, making complicated information easier to understand. I’ve never been a slacker and despite how young I may be, I take pride in myself on being able to juggle many different tasks.

      I think my skills and experience will be an excellent match with what you are seeking, and I am excited about having a chance to work with you.

      If you would like to talk with me or schedule an interview, please call me at 904-XXX-XXXX or email me at XXXXXX. Thank you for your consideration

      Reply
        Biron Clark says May 18, 2016

        Hi.

        I think that relocation paragraph just ends a bit abruptly so I might try something like this:

        I am humbled to be applying to this position of Administrative Assistant, and I do hope you find my Cover Letter and Resume up to par to fill the position. I am permanently relocating to Fayetteville on May 30th, 2016, so my goal is to find an administrative position that will advance my career and allow me to _____ (something you want to work more with, a skill you want to build, etc.)

        Customize it for the job so they’ll immediately know why you applied.

        Also I know this isn’t what you asked but the overall cover letter seems very rigid/formal. Maybe that’s what employers want in your industry. If it is working and you are getting interviews, IGNORE MY ADVICE AND DO NOT CHANGE IT. However, if not, I might consider making it a bit more conversational. It doesn’t sound like how you’d talk. Or how anyone would talk. I know you want the cover letter to be professional. But it’s still a person reading it on the other end. It’s good to find a balance..

        Just a thought. Hope this helps =)

        Reply
Carolyn says May 20, 2016

Hi Biron

Great article and I enjoy your advise to others. I have two questions if you don’t mind. First I am relocating from PA to NM to be with my boyfriend who went back home for work. How do I explain this in an interview? Second, I am an administrative assistant do you think it’s really possible for someone who isn’t a professional to get a job long distance? I have 20 years experience and just got my bachelors degree in business.

Reply
    Biron Clark says May 20, 2016

    Hey Carolyn, thanks for reading!

    1. I would tell them the truth- your boyfriend had to move back home for work and you’re job searching to join him.

    The #1 thing companies worry about is that you’ll take a job, then get nervous and decide you can’t relocate and leave them hanging! So any time you have a personal reason for moving, it’s worth sharing as long as you’re comfortable with it.

    2. Everyone’s a professional! I know what you mean though..

    It might not be possible. But you can try! Maybe put your boyfriend’s address on the resume even, and then tell companies that you’re finalizing the relocation right now and your boyfriend already moved there (again- to get rid of any concerns they have).

    Or try to set up a ton of interviews for when you do arrive. That’s better than nothing. It might be the case that you have to be in-town to conduct a successful job search, but I can’t predict.

    Let me know if this makes sense! hope it helped.

    Reply
      Carolyn says June 2, 2016

      Thanks Biron. I am going to try using my boyfriends address for now and see what happens. I personally believe companies do not want to be bothered when they see the “relocating..” line. Maybe for a perspective employee they really want but for my line of work they are not going to jump at me. So I am going to try and go with the local address.

      Reply
Ivan Von Messer says May 21, 2016

Hey Everyone,

In some professions, if you are out of state you will not simply get selected for a job interview even on the phone. With today’s scarcity of positions in most professions, an employer will easily find a well qualified local candidate. This is the case with my profession, I am a pharmacist. I am living in Boston right now, but I am licensed in Washington State ( 3000 miles away). I had to move to my parents temporarily to MA ( I thought so), but it turned out to be that I can not move back to WA for about 4 years now because I can not find a job as a pharmacist over there being so far away. Last summer I had an initial job interview on the phone, and I made a great first impression. However, then they selected a local candidate. The Company is having another opening, and now they want to do a face to face interview only because I told that I will be relocating to the area in May 2016. Now, when they scheduled a face to face interview, I am reluctant to go because it is quiet expensive to travel such a long distance, and of course they will not pay for air ticket, hotel stay etc. Therefore, when you choose this “white lie” you still need to understand that most companies will not pay for your visit these days, and have you come face to face interview without knowing that you coming for the interview in reality only to get them to interview you. This is my case. You also need to understand that most job openings will have multiple applicants. As a pharmacist, I am constantly competing with at least 3-5 WELL QUALIFIED applicants. In reality, it is 10-15 applicants for a single opening in my profession.

Here is the problem. If the employer knew that I was coming by paying my own expense just for the interview with them and they agreed to it, it would logically mean that they are really really interested in me. However, they are thinking now that I will be there to regardless whether I get this job or not. Therefore, it could easily be just another “check -mark” interview( employer really not interested in you, but they interview you due to their administrative policy rules). Most of us have experienced these “check -mark” interviews. The job market is so tight in my profession that it is the only interview I have, and it may takes months before I get another interview, especially being out of state. It does not matter what address you put on your resume!! The employer will quickly determine on the phone if you are physically present in the area. This strategy could only work if the point of your interest is lets say up to 200-300 miles from where you live. Then you could easily and inexpensively be able to travel to the interview (lets say on the bus) on a short notice and pretend you are living there. However, if you are looking for a job that is located more than 500 miles or more, then it is not going to work easily for you unless you do not care to spend $500-1000 just to try. Don’t forget that it may take one week or more to even find out that they proceeded with another candidate! Are you willing to pay for the hotel stay plus car rental for a week or more just to find out that you were not selected? Of course, if you have a place to stay there, and would not need a car ( will be staying with relatives and could use their car temporarily) then it is a different story. However, most people will have to pay for their trip completely from start to end. If you are already in large debt, you will most likely be reluctant to spend $500-1000 on your trip when you do not even know realistically what chances you have to get that position!! Employers are extremely picky these days selecting a candidate, and they are really slow!! With some companies (their number is growing), it will take 2-4 week to find out if you get a job or not after an interview. Therefore, just because you were selected face to face interview does not really mean anything at all!! They could have selected another handful applicants for a face to face interview. How would you feel if you spent a lot of money to travel there just to find out that they are not interested in you??? How many of you would risk in my situation and take chances? I am in large debt. On my resume, I never put where I am currently, and I do not get phone calls after I send my resume sometimes for months!! I am absolutely sure that with today’s economy and job situation, you have to be a local candidate to do a successful in your search. After all, you are not a prominent scientist, economist etc. Why would an employer then select you (out of state candidate) if then can easily select a qualified local candidate?? You can not beat this!! Honestly, if I were an employer I would almost always go with a local candidate unless you are so bright and prominent that most employers in your profession would want you!! If I do not get this job, I will then get my license transfer to MA so that I will be a local candidate here. The job market is much better in WA than MA in my profession, and personally do not like Boston, and I would prefer living in Seattle area. I feel like I should have transferred my license to MA instead of hoping and trying to find a way to relocate back to WA.

Reply
Daniel says May 25, 2016

Hi Biron,

Thanks for posting this article, very helpful. My situation is I am a recent engineering graduate in Missouri. I am having some trouble finding jobs here and I was wondering would this advice still apply if I was just applying one state over like Illinois? I found a lot of jobs I qualify for there and a lot of them I could drive to and back in one day along with interviewing. So I was wondering if they would still think that is odd or is it apply more for long distances requiring plane rides.

Thanks for your time.

Reply
    Biron Clark says May 25, 2016

    Hey Daniel,

    Congrats on graduating!

    I can’t give you the perfect answer. There’s some grey area. Companies are less likely to be scared off by your location since you’re so close. So you might not need something as drastic as what I recommend above.

    So I might try with your regular address for 1-2 weeks. Test the easiest method. I say “easy” because you won’t have any explaining to do when you get on the phone, you’re being totally honest with them, etc.

    If you get no responses, then it’s time to try something else.

    Also, a really simple Objective on your resume could help if you don’t get responses in the first week. I normally HATE an “Objective” section except when it helps to explain something specific. In this case, it could be something like this:

    “Actively seeking a _____ engineering position in Illinois/Missouri”

    Then they see that and think “okay, this person has thought about their job search, is targeting certain areas. They’re not sending their resume to every city in the country. They realize they applied for a job that’s not in their local town, etc.”

    But I’d save that as Plan B.

    Does this help at all? Let me know. To summarize, start with the least drastic option first, which is just leaving your resume as-is and telling the truth. Send out a lot that first week though so you can measure the results. You can’t just send 2 resumes and call it a day.

    Reply
      Daniel says May 26, 2016

      Yes! Very helpful and easy to follow. Thank you so much for the quick response it really means a lot.

      Reply
Ann says May 26, 2016

I live in southern Indiana and have for the last 12 years. We came here to care for my father in law, he has past and all of the kids are grown and out on their own.
We would absolutely love to move to Idaho or one of the other West or Northwest states as we both love the mountains!!
I was raised in the bay area and took my husband back their when we married and we lived in the Bay Area and Reno for over 20 years.
My question is this:
I will need relocation assistance in order to make the move and am willing to take a $2.00 hit per or on my wage if $18.00 or more. Is this a reasonable request or just wishful thinking.
I have been a Purchasing and Production Control Manager for the last 10 years with 25 years experience in the Aluminum Extrusion and Custom Steel Fabrications.

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    Biron Clark says May 28, 2016

    Hi Ann,

    Great question, I don’t think anyone has asked something like this yet.

    You have a lot of valuable experience… 10 years of Management in a very specific area and even more in that industry.

    I do not think you need to (or should) discount your skillset and try to bargain for relocation assistance.

    Any decent company should be offering relocation assistance at your level. Period.

    Also any company in Idaho should be accustomed to relocating people, I would assume. It’s not like being a company in New York where you have plenty of local talent and see little reason to relocate anyone (and even NYC companies relocate plenty of people!)

    I don’t think it’d help you get hired to offer to take a wage cut. Don’t say this to companies.

    You can have that number in your head as a “floor” during negotiation. It’s great that you’ve decided you have some room to work with, and that you’re willing and able to take a slight pay reduction. But I would never tell this to the company. I don’t think it’ll help you get hired.

    Companies hiring somebody at your level want a great person who is confident in their skillset and can come in and make a big contribution right away. They don’t want to save $3K a year (or whatever it would be) on salary.

    This is my opinion. I hope you don’t mind the long reply but I feel strongly about this. You might be pleasantly surprised… a good company should be able to offer you a small pay increase and pay for relocation.

    FYI larger companies can often offer better relocation packages. The biggest companies have whole teams dedicated to doing this. They’ll probably just put a clause in your offer letter that says you’re responsible for reimbursing relocation costs if you leave within 1 year. That’s pretty normal.

    Reply
Happy Brar says May 27, 2016

Hello Biron,

Thanks for the article. I want to ask that is it a nice choice to put the present address and in a second line just write relocating to and give that address.

So, do you think giving the two address in a cover letter and cv is a good choice?

Secondly, please also let me know if I can put my present address, and in a second line just write relocating to Auckland in June 2016.

Please help me to know which way is well suited.

Thanks.

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    Biron Clark says May 27, 2016

    Hello!

    Yes, this could work. I might personally use the second option… put your current address and then say “Relocating to Auckland in June 2016”. I like that idea.

    Good luck with the move and I hope this helps!

    Reply
SG says June 1, 2016

Appreciate it thanks for sharing

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James says June 5, 2016

Hello Biron,

I currently live in Tulsa, but looking to relocate to the DFW area. I have had a handful of face to face interviews there so far, but nothing that came to getting a job. I believe it is just me not being local that is hurting me. I have nothing tying my down in Tulsa, no contract or house. My family and I can up and move at any notice. Do you think on my resume I should remove “Tulsa, OK” on and replace it with “Ready to relocate to the Dallas-Fort Worth” or something along those lines?

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    Biron Clark says June 5, 2016

    Hi James,

    If you’re already getting many interviews (and making it past the phone interview, to the face-to-face portion) I don’t think changing your resume is going to make any difference.

    The resume is something to look at if you’re having trouble getting interviews.

    I’d focus on what you’re saying in the interviews, and make sure you’re communicating with each company during/after the interview process that you’re excited and ready to relocate quickly.

    Reply
Jane says July 26, 2016

Hi Biron!

I am located in northeastern Pennsylvania, just 2.5 hours away from New York City. My current job has ties to New York City (we bus people back and forth to work in the city who actually commute in from Pennsylvania). I write about NYC, I research NYC. So I have ties to the area and go there all the time for my current job. I have friends there. So, I am focusing my new job search in New York City. I can be on one of those buses tomorrow if an interview popped up. I am not using any sort of address on my resume and this seems to be the trick for NYC interviews and other locations. Do you think that potential employers knowing I am there for such a short notice interview will help in getting an offer? Do you think my job ties to the city will help? I look at it this way, If I can be there for an interview on short notice, I can be there to start the job. I am also looking at things this way, if my classmates that majored in the same field are getting jobs in New York City from PA without living there first (only 2.5 hours away) so can I!!!!

Reply
    Biron Clark says July 26, 2016

    Hi Jane,

    I think you should be fine. Being there for a short notice interview probably won’t help you (they’re looking for someone who can come in and help solve their problems… whether it’s you or a local candidate).

    But you’re close enough to NYC, and know the area well enough through your past research and ties to the area, that it won’t hurt you in the process.

    I worked in Boston and NYC as a Recruiter and relocation between the two cities is thought of as being no big deal. It doesn’t raise any red flags or concerns when someone would tell me they’re in NYC but ready to move up to Boston ASAP if they find a job.

    I think people in other regions of the country have it a lot worse in terms of trying to find a job out of state.

    The northeast US is pretty tightly packed together and I feel like relocation happens a LOT between DC, Boston, Philadelphia, NYC, etc.

    EDIT: one final thought… Before any interview, just make sure you have an answer for if they ask “okay, if we hire you, how are you going to get here and be ready to start?”

    They’ll want to hear you have a plan in place, or at least that you’ve thought about it (looked at apartments, thought about housing costs, etc.)

    Reply
Jessica says August 17, 2016

Hi Biron,

I am a very mission-driven person, and I want to work for 1 specific company. They have hubs all over the U.S., but not in my city. I am prepared to move wherever they would offer me the specific position I want (however, I have been researching my top 3 cities).

Dallas is my number one from the options currently available. Therefore, I have already “cold called” to have a phone conversation with the hiring manager, and sent the Executive Director a LinkedIn note. They have informed me that the position will not be posted or available for a couple of months ( it would be posted October/November) with a start date in March 2017. They already know I am from out of town…

Would my best bet be to take my out of state address off and replace with 1. “Willing to relocate for X company” 2″ Willing to relocate for X position at X company” or 3. “Relocating to Dallas, March 2017” ?

What would be the best wording to get me the phone interview for Dallas, and if that doesn’t work out… the consideration for the specific position in other states?

Thanks!

Jessica

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    Biron Clark says August 19, 2016

    Hi Jessica,

    I think options 1 and 2 would sound odd and I would not recommend using them. Since you spoke with the Director already on LinkedIn perhaps you could continue a dialogue (not every day… but just check in occasionally). It’s possible you can forward your resume directly over to him/her when the position is open and skip the whole application process, if you develop a relationship. The headline on your resume really only matters if you’re sending an online application to someone who doesn’t know you at all.

    As a final thought… it’s okay if you only want to work for 1 company, but be careful of coming on too strong. Companies want to know you’re interested in them and have good reasons for applying, but I don’t think you should go as far as saying “listen, you guys are the only company I want to work for and I’m not applying anywhere else”. That will not help you get hired and will definitely not help you get a higher salary.

    Reply
re5pect says September 1, 2016

Hi Biron! Here’s my suggestion to everyone who is looking to move but does not get an interview. Real quick – you just have to get up, pack and move yourself if getting a job ahead of time clearly not working for you… Here’s what I’ve done. I went to college in Memphis, TN and got a job at one of Fortune 500 employers here. I never liked Memphis due to many reason but this whole time I’ve been just sucking it up. I’ve been employed for 4 years and one day I just said ‘enough’… On one weekend I flew over to Florida (because that’s where I wanted to go); found the complex I really liked, signed the lease for 6 months, flew back and in a week or so I took the remaining vacation I had left and was on my way to my new apartment LOLOLOL… long story short – if you are young and ambitious – this is the way to do it. I found a new job within 2 months and I had enough money saved to get me going for next 6 months in case if things were bad… Life is too short to waste it at a place you hate and frankly, it is hard to keep everyone happy anyway, sure my employer didn’t like the fact that I just dumped them, but I so wanted to do it for such a long time and believe me – it felt great!

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    Biron Clark says September 7, 2016

    This is a really great point, I’m glad you brought it up because it isn’t something I mentioned at all!

    Reply
Ashwin says September 1, 2016

Hi,

I’m currently working in Pune and looking for job opportunities in Delhi, my native.

But as mentioned in the article, recruiters would be looking for local applicants and would not be sure if I would be relocating for sure after the offer.

So is it fine to mention ” Looking for job opportunities in Delhi, Gurgaon or Noida, as Delhi is my native” ?

Will mentioning ” Delhi as my native” create any sort of bad impression about the profile to the recruiter ?

Thanks in advance!

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    Biron Clark says September 1, 2016

    I think that’s fine. Give it a try and see if you get responses. I don’t think it’ll hurt you at all.

    Reply
Mari says September 9, 2016

Hi Biron,

I am interested in applying for a job in DC. I currently live in NY. I applied to a few other jobs in DC using my NY address, but never heard back. Maybe because of the fact that I did not put a local address. I am also told that hiring managers will rarely consider an entry level applicant because they get plenty of applicants locally. I am also an entry level applicant but very eager to move to DC. Should I indicate a selected time frame that I am planning to move to DC, on my resume? Or should I say I am planning to move to nearby Arlington Virginia, or city in Maryland that is closer to DC via commute?

Reply
    Biron Clark says September 10, 2016

    Hi Mari,

    If you are entry level, I think you definitely need to tell a white lie on your resume. Like the companies said… there’s not much reason for them to hire you if they have plenty of local candidates with the same experience and background.

    I would use option #3 and tell them you are planning on relocating to Washington DC.

    Or just pretend to be a local candidate and completely lie. But I always prefer option 3. Lies lead to more lies and could come back to hurt you.

    Reply
Isaiah says September 24, 2016

Hi Biron, great blog 🙂 . If I were to use option 1, but write somewhere on top of my resume “temporary address” or something along those lines, just to get job interviewers attention, would that be a good idea? In that case, it would be presumable that I am mid-relocating. What do you think?

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    Biron Clark says September 24, 2016

    Hi Isaiah,

    I’ve never seen that phrase on a resume. I don’t think I’d see that and think you are relocating. I’d worry about your living situation and stability.

    You could try something like this maybe: “Currently relocating to ____. Temporary address: _____”

    It’s still not something I’ve ever seen but it’s worth testing. Try it and measure the results!

    Reply
Arturo says October 7, 2016

Hi Biron,

I am currently applying to jobs in the Portland area and most of my jobs I had were in Southern California. The only option i really have is to say I will be moving there but I am not sure that any job will consider me because of the distance. I think i have a great resume! I was wondering if there is a word advise I can add to my resume that i will be living up there?

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    Biron Clark says October 8, 2016

    I’m not sure what you are asking. The wording on your resume? Did you read the article (Option #3 in particular)? I think that is perfect for your situation. Use the wording I gave in the article.

    Reply
Tangelia Strawder says November 9, 2016

Hey, I;m planning to move to another state mid June of 2017.How soon should I start looking for another job?

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Robert says December 24, 2016

Hi Biron.
Im Robert, from Europe. I just got my bachelor degree in MIS from Texas Tech. Because i have a 36 month employment authorization in US, I want to live and work during that time in Boston, MA (because, I want to get master in one of the schools in boston, and also because of the life style of Boston is like Europe).
My major is MIS, which means i can work either as a programmer, project manager, or system analyst. But, my concern is:
First, Competitiveness. Because Boston has Harvard, MIT and UM, do you think it will be harder for me to find an IT job in Boston? Because companies are willing to hire more from prestige.

Second, Cost of living: Since i got used to the cost of living of Texas, will it be harder to live in Boston, or somewhere close to Boston?

Third, Relocation on resume: Instead of Lubbock, TX address, is it better to write:
a) “Next month, Im moving to boston for grad school purpose,” But the problem is, because grad school lasts only 1-2 years, what is next?
b) are companies willing to hire someone who is planning to attend to a school while he/she is working at their company? And, would it be less effective to insert “Im relocating to Boston for school reason”?

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Laura says January 8, 2017

Hi, Biron! I’ve read the entire comment thread, and it has been very helpful. However, I’m interested in your advice for my specific situation. I’m 32, and my husband (of 1 year) currently commutes 60 miles toward Tampa from Orlando, and I commute about 40 minutes in the opposite direction. We have been in this arrangement for 1 year, and have decided that we want to work within 30 miles of each other (relocate to Tampa Bay area from Orlando; about a hour and 25 minutes away). I have now worked in my current field for 3.5 years and am ready for a change in employer but wish to continuing to work in the same field. There is one large employer in this sector in the Tampa Bay area, with job postings from a myriad of offices within the institution. I have said “relocating to Tampa Bay Area” at the top of my resume, but think i should add “from Orlando” to that phrase so they know we are local. My question is really your thoughts on whether or not I should tell them that I am relocating due to my husband’s position. I don’t want them to think I just follow my husband everywhere, or that he may not like his job (he has been there 1 year already). If we move to Tampa Bay when our lease is up in April 2016 and while I continue my job search, then my commute to my current job will be 1.5 hours each way, 5 days a week, which is risky (unsustainable) if I am not offered a new job within a month or two. Sorry to be so long-winded, but it feels like a unique situation. To live in Tampa Bay would mean I would be in the same location as my intended employer, and my husband would only have to commute 30 minutes. It’s definitely what we want, and where we want to “settle down.” Moving prior to leaving my current job would be challenging, but it would update my address in the online application system to a local address…. I look forward to hearing your thoughts, and thanks for your time! Happy New Year!

Reply
    Biron Clark says January 8, 2017

    Hi Laura,

    Thanks, happy new year!

    I’d make it clear that you’re dead-set on moving to Tampa, AND that you’re currently in FL too (because that makes the move easier).

    That might be as easy as just making sure your latest job on your resume says “Orlando”. If not, you could put something up top mentioning that you are “relocating from Orlando to Tampa”.

    But for your main question: No, don’t tell them directly that you’re relocating for your husband’s position. Tell them that you and your husband decided you want to live and work in the Tampa area for a number of reasons and you’re both committed to making the move happen now.

    Although you might want to mention that your husband has already secured a job. So that they won’t worry that you’re both job hunting.

    Let me know if this helps!

    Reply
Jamison says January 24, 2017

Hi, Biron

I see that even years latter you are still responding to comments on this article, (which is great I’ve read quite a few of them). I’m curious if you have any feedback for me on my potential strategy for relocating. I’m already planning a vacation to my target city and I was thinking that I would include the dates that I would be in town on my resume, while also using some of the other strategies mentioned here to indicate that I intend to relocate. My though process is that by letting them know I intend to relocate and when they can do an in person interview it would increase my chances of the companies viewing me as a local candidate. Also if I do this what do you think would be good for timing? I was planning on sending resumes a month ahead of time, is that too early, too late or about right?

Reply
    Biron Clark says January 25, 2017

    Hey Jamison,

    You can try it. Test it out. I might put it in the cover letter instead. Putting the exact week you’ll be visiting on a resume might come off a bit “strong”. But test it out, try it. It depends on your industry, there’s no “right” answer unfortunately.

    But definitely take advantage of that vacation week. When you talk to employers on the phone, mention the time you plan on being in town, and that you’d love to meet with them for a coffee or an interview. That’s a great thing to do!

    For timing I’d apply a bit earlier. But it depends on your industry and your level. Check out this article. I’d say you should start applying 2 months ahead of time: http://careersidekick.com/timing-your-job-search-when-should-you-begin/

    Reply
Amy says April 16, 2017

What if you are seeking a fresh start in a new city? Is that phrase something that will “turn off” possible employers? I’ve been out of the workforce, but am seeking to relocate to a new city so I’ve applied for many out of state jobs. My experience is also out of state. I was thinking of including that statement in my objective of my resume. Yes? Or big NO?
example for objective statement: Web Developer seeking to relocate from San Francisco

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    Biron Clark says April 16, 2017

    Hi Amy, I think it’s worth testing/trying. Doesn’t seem like it’d be a turn-off but that’s just my best guess.

    But honestly I tell most people not to even put an objective in their resume. I say put a career Summary instead. 99% of the time your objective is to land a job of a certain type in a certain industry. And this is pretty obvious to the employers you apply to.

    Hopefully this answer doesn’t make things MORE confusing. That’s not my intention obviously. But that’s my honest take on it.

    I guess the short answer is that you could try doing what you described. However if it were me, I’d put the bit about relocation up top in my contact info like the article says, and then just jump into a Summary, and then recent experience right after that.

    Here’s an article about Summary sections if you need help: http://careersidekick.com/resume-summary-examples/

    Reply
Sasia Rogers says May 17, 2017

Hello,

I really want to just take my cat and got to Berkeley, CA. There is a graduate program I really want to attend. I get the whole applying and trying for a phone interview, but do you have any pointers for the unemployed and how they can go about finding suitable places to live until they can afford an apt. If you know someone i can speak with that would be great.

Thank you,

Sage

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    Les says July 9, 2017

    Hi Sage, since you will be in school are you able to get student loans to pay for your living expenses until you get a job?
    I went to school out of the country and had no job . I used my student loan to pay my rent until I got a job on campus at my school.

    Reply
Galina says May 19, 2017

Great advice!

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Les Celian says July 9, 2017

This is a long answer as I am over 35 but not yet 50.
My question is I lived in the Washington DC area for 7 years in total
I lived there for 2 years after completing a second bachelors degree (International Relations) in another country. My goal was to work there pay off debt for a couple of years get experience and apply for graduate school in the UK.
When I got back to Washington DC I was not able to secure a permanent job that paid enough to support myself long term AND… pay enough to pay off my debt (credit card bills) after being an international student (not being able to work full-time while in school) It got so bad for me financially in DC due to high rents and high public transit costs after 2 years and some months that I decided to move to a mid-sized city in the mid-west.

Before I could move to this new city I lived with my family in Illinois and worked for 2 months to have the money to move.
I did not get accepted in graduate school in the UK last summer so…
After living in this mid-sized city for 2 1/2 years I am more than ready to move back to Washington DC to pursue my career in international relations.
I have gotten advice from friends and family not to limit my search to only Washington DC for relocation.

I am open to living other in other progressive cosmopolitan places but only have a history in the DC area. My area of interest is immigration so I can work on either coast. I have applied for 2 jobs in Seattle and used my Brothers address.
I used my old address from the DC area to apply for the DC area jobs.

Do I make up addresses for say 4 cities that I would like to target for jobs? I don’t think relocation assistance will be offered as an option for me as I am applying for an administrative assistant position in my new field as I start over.

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Les Celian says July 9, 2017

Sorry Biron This subject is my passion now!!!
When I moved to my mid sized mid-western city from the DC area I used a fake address from an apartment complex that I looked up on the internet in that city. Luckily I lived in Illinois with my parents so when I got a call from my temp agency who got me the job to come in an interview /fill out paper work/start working. I was able to catch the mega bus overnight and be in my targeted city early the next morning (8 hour ride).

After I got to my new city I lived in Air B n B for a week then moved to a hotel and ended up staying there for the next 2 months. It was expensive about $1,300 a month (“rent”) $350 a week. But I felt safe, not knowing the neighborhoods at all my commute to work was ok and I was across the street from a Walmart so I had access to food daily as I did not have a car. I did find a apartment for $550 a small studio and it served the purpose for me to pay off my debt to prepare for grad school/future career.

Reply
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