Ask the Readers: Would You Relocate for the Perfect Job? (Chance to win!)

By Linsey Knerl on 12 January 2010 (Updated 19 January 2010) 151 comments
Photo: Yuichi Kosio

*** Congrats to our winners! ***

"I'd relocate for a great, perfect, or possibly even an OK job (if it was something that I was excited about and would pay well)--but I'd only move if boyfriend could come with me. We're currently three hours apart, and in four months I'll be moving to his city to continue my education."

Some people are just happy to be where they are — and no amount of money (or the perfect job) could move them. Others are more flexible, willing to follow their dreams to the ends of the earth for a chance at something more. Many of us are somewhere in the middle: open to the right opportunity, but not eager to pack it all up and move across country for just any 'ol job.

Where do you stand on this issue? Have you relocated for the "perfect" job? How about just an "OK" job? Or have you put down roots right where you're at.. forever?

We want to hear your thoughts on the issue, as well as tips and suggestions for others pondering this question. (We encourage you to link to your own blog posts if you've covered a similar topic on your own site.) Let us know your stories here in our comment thread or on Twitter, and you'll be entered to win one of two $20 Amazon giveaways. (Yes, that's right! We've doubled our prize money!) Dozens of readers have already won. You could be next!

Win a $20 Amazon Gift Certificate

We're doing two giveaways — one for random comments, and another one for a random tweets.

How to Enter:

  1. Post your answer in the comments below, or

  2. Tweet your answer. Include both "@wisebread" and "#WBAsk" in your tweet so we'll see it and count it.

If you're inspired to write a whole blog post, please link to it in the comments or tweet it.

At the end of the drawing, we'll update this post to include (and link to) all of your helpful responses.

Giveaway Rules:

  • Contest ends Friday, January 15th at 11:59 am CST. Winners will be announced after January 15th on the original post and via Twitter. Winners will also be contacted via email and Twitter Direct Message.

  • You can enter both drawings — once by leaving a comment and once by tweeting.

  • Only tweets that contain both "@wisebread" and "#WBAsk" will be entered. (Otherwise, we won't see it.)

Good luck!

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Guest's picture
Guest

I already have the perfect job, but no, couldn't leave my friends and family.

Guest's picture
Kelly

I would gladly move for the perfect job, as long as my husband was on board. In fact I've already done it once. It takes a while to reestablish yourself, but in the long run it's worth it. New opportunities, new things to see, new experiences. Besides, you can always move back if you hate it.

Guest's picture
Guest

I moved from southern BC to northern BC (for those who don't know, western Canada) to go to school to follow my dream career. After grad, moved back to southern BC, then to the Island for a job. Then over to the eastern US for a year and a half for another job more specific to my goal... then back up to eastern Canada when I got offered a job with a company I'd been dreaming of working with since 3rd year.

Overall best experience of my life!

Only words of warning - make sure you have the financial resources necessary for all that moving =)

Guest's picture

I would! :)

After all, we are talking about ideal cases.

Guest's picture
Candy

So fast, it'd make your head spin! Having been stuck in a dead-end job for years to have enough money to pay off debts and put my son through college, I'm actively looking for the perfect job now.

Guest's picture
Audrey

Yes, if it worked for my husband & kids and the weather was agreeable also.

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Alan S

I would move for a dream job as long as the location met certain criteria. I've already done it once.

Guest's picture
Mare

Yes, definitely yes. Happiness can be hard to come by, especially in your career, so if the perfect job was handed to me. I'd go. there is no rule that says you can't revisit the choice later down the line.

Guest's picture

Given that DH and I would like to leave this town, I'd be happy to relocate for the imperfect job, too!

Guest's picture
Crystal

If I weren't married - absolutely in a heart beat. I love moving! As it is, I probably wouldn't move unless I was offered >80k, or DH's job moved.

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Kristy

Assuming the perfect job was in a city I didn't hate, then yes, in a minute. No job in the world would convince me to move to Houston, or Atlanta, for example; however, I'd definitely move to Seattle for a not-quite-perfect job. Though I suppose if I were unemployed, I'd consider even moving to Houston... well, maybe if I'd been unemployed for over a year.

Guest's picture

...assuming I could recognize that it really is perfect, I'd go almost anywhere for the perfect job! I like a lot of things about where I live now, but I spend so much time working that the perfect job would be worth sacrificing a LOT of conveniences.

Guest's picture
Emily N.

I haven't relocated for a job, but I might be willing to depending on the job or location that was being offered to me.

Guest's picture
BT

I have relocated 4 times in the last 10 years for what I thought were amazing opportunities at the time. Each time things turned out not to be at all what I'd been led to believe they were -

-600 mile move...One company completely restructured 2 weeks after I started. My position was eliminated, but they kept me on *a* job there and it took me 18 months to find something new.

-800 mile move.....The next job was better, but after 2 months there everyone was laid off for 5 months. I stayed with that company for a total of 4 years getting laid off again and again or working 16-20 hour days for months straight without a day off.

-1200 mile move.....After finally leaving there, the next opportunity also was falsely advertised. The company changed direction/priorities and kind of phased me out. When I put in my 2 week notice, they just told me to go ahead and leave - without even training anyone there on how to do my work.

I've become completely jaded and have no idea what I would consider even an OK job at this stage. I'm about to start a new one in February, so here's hoping it is tolerable!

Guest's picture
lynne

I sure would! unless it was somewhere tropical because I am so, so scared of spiders. short of that I'd go pretty much anywhere.

Guest's picture
Jess

I'd move for a good job if it was to a location I'd already thought about moving or could at least see my self being happy living in. You job is only part of your life, I wouldn't want to have a great job but living in Fargo or something...

Guest's picture
Drew

Perfect or not, there has to be a balance here. Moving is never fun or easy however, the opportunity to work the perfect job in a place that meets my needs would be worth the effort. Distance from family and friends only raises the bar on "perfect". (The greater the distance, the greater the perfection required.)

Guest's picture
Carmen

Probably not. I like where I live, family is nearby, and money isn't that important to me.

Guest's picture
Ajonesin

I would relocate within bounds...must be mountainous with great access to public lands and recreation. If the location were right, I would probably relocate for even an OK job with some security. It would have to be a perfect job to relocate if the location was bad.

Guest's picture
Monica

I love the rain, which is why I've always lived in the Pacific Northwest, but if I could live somewhere else - especially overseas - with lots of green and mountains, and have an awesome job: no-brainer! Incidentally, I am looking into possibily doing that for the right opportunity, and liked what I've found on your blog so far.

Guest's picture
Jen

Yes I would with one caveat. It would depend where I was moving to. Preferably it would be somewhere warm without cold and snow.

Guest's picture
Wendy

When my daughter was growing up, my whole focus was on home school, home business and homesteading. We lived in an underground house back in the woods and had a CSA farm. I sold the place in 2005. My daughter is married and living elsewhere. I am free to do whatever tickles my fancy or move wherever I want. Those were fantastic years rooted to place, but now any interesting opportunity is cause to move on.

Guest's picture
Lee

It's a sliding scale for me:
For the perfect job, I'd relocate to an OK place.
For the perfect place, I'd relocate for an OK job.
Depends which side of the argument gets me closer to my desired life situation, i.e., meaningful work, reasonable pay, beautiful, peaceful location.
May as well dream.

Guest's picture
kath

I guess it would depend on a lot of factors. If it was my dream job and it was only myself, I would take it in a heartbeat, but I've been married for almost 30 years and I would have to consider the impact on my family. Right now, I would have to say no. In 2 years when my youngest starts college it would be a definite maybe.
It also depends on where the job is. I live on the east coast. If the job was in Alaska, I would probably turn it down as being too far to travel for family occasions. If it was in the southern US, I would probably do it. Anywhere outside of the US would be a tough sell for my husband, so that would be out. Too many factors to consider!

Guest's picture
Jason

Not exactly the perfect job, but I was a perfect match for the job skills required, the salary was CRAZY high, and it gave me an opporunity to pay off my rather expensive divorce. That being said, I only did it for a year then moved on. The working hours were INSANE.

If I was in the same position again and know what I know now, I would do it again in a heartbeat. Not just for the money but for the opportunity to experience many different cultures.

Guest's picture
Ashley

For me, it's all about location. Once I find someplace to live, then I find where to work. If I got a job offer in a different state, I may consider it, but ultimately the location matters more than the job. It's easier to find a new job than to live someplace where you don't enjoy being.

Guest's picture
moonlitmagik

it depends on if it were to pay enough to where i could still visit my home state and family and friends that i leave behind. other wise it wouldnt be worth it.

Guest's picture
Kelly

Yes, if the perfect job came along I would relocate! It'd have to be to a warm environment though...

Guest's picture
Mary Connor

If I would be able to take my entire family with me I would, we are a very close knit family, and I could never imagine life without my parents and as they get older it gets to be a stronger bond, and of course, my teenagers!

Guest's picture
mal088

I did, several times, across continents. To be fair, it was within the same company, and intercompany transfers are better than to move without a job prospect. The moves weren't "better" per se -- but they were good career opportunities. Things to consider: is the company paying for the move, what are the benefits, can I keep my existing benefits, long term or short term?

The downside is that I've never been truly settled in an position or place. It's difficult to forecast more than 3-5 years ahead. And it's hell on a relationship.

Guest's picture
Debra L

Sure I'd relocate. I already moved from Ohio to California in 1993.

Guest's picture
Jim

If I could find a job that paid me enough to live in Silicon Valley, I would be there so fast it would make your head spin. I love that area. But unfortunately, everytime I have looked into it, I would have to give up far too much. When 1br apartments rent for the mortgage I have on a 3br house, and the pay scale isn't that much higher than what I make where I am, I can't justify it.

Guest's picture
Guest

My husband has been laid off 3 times in 30 years during each "recession"- we are probably on the older side of the comments here. He has a job that is first to be eliminated when healthcare is hit (he was at current hospital almost 15 years). We anticipated he'd be laid off in this economy (or myself since my company did 3 layoffs) so we sold our home last April. With one son in college, one in high school it's not even an option to say no to a move. We would move for a good job for him - not even great - he has to work probably 16 more years, myself a bit more. His field is one that is slowly being eliminated so he is thinking of what he can retrain as. It's certainly not what we were looking for but if anyone out there has jobs - let us know!

Guest's picture
cwaltz

I have a family so there are other factors besides just job satisfaction to take into consideration. I have a family so how they would adapt to the environment I was moving to as well as the requirements of the perfect job on my family would need to be taken into consideration.

Christine
dazed1821@AOL.com

Guest's picture
Johnny

During my stint in the Navy I got really used to being mobile. Although I was primarily stationed in Jacksonville Fl I traveled quite a bit. When I got out of the Navy I took a job in VA i was there for about 8 months an internal opportunity presented it self with the company I currently worked for presented itself in GA which I took. But in these last few months I have bought my first house and had my first child. Although I would want to give him a stable environment to grow up in, but if a position comes along that will allow me to provide for my family better than I can now i would most definitely consider that move.

Guest's picture
DivaJean

Last February, I was let go from my job as a nurse case manager with an insurance company (guess they needed to have cash on hand to lobby against Universal Health Care!). Anyhow, I posted online resumes and got lots of responses looking to have me relocate. At first, hubby and I were dead against it (we are in an affordable home in a great school district, blocks from my mom and my inlaws, etc), but began to get creative as to potential lists of wants from nurse recruiters. I would get cold calls from nurse recruiters- and I would ask for things like: only to Hawaii, moving expenses paid for, help in selling home- and I would get some answers! Doesn't hurt to ask! Ultimately, my best fit job found me- and I am happily employed.

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mariel martinez

It would depend on the place, the salary, the job itself...

Guest's picture
MB

Absolutely. I travel 5 nights a week for work all over the country, so I'm pretty much location independent at this point. For the right opportunity, I would move anywhere.

Guest's picture
Jeanne

I'd relocate for a great, perfect, or possibly even an OK job (if it was something that I was excited about and would pay well)--but I'd only move if boyfriend could come with me. We're currently three hours apart, and in four months I'll be moving to his city to continue my education.

Guest's picture
Allie

The location would be more important to me than the job, but I'm pretty much always up for relocation.

Guest's picture
Guest

I did just that 3 months ago and would do it again in a heartbeat.

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giorgio ugazio

I'm moving from Italy to UK, to follow my dream job "videogame rendering engineer".

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Alan

I would move for the perfect job...I'm in an ok job now but I know I don't want to be here forever. When the right opportunity is available I will move.

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Stacie Crochet

Probably not...I live near my parents and brother and would rather be near them than move for a job. :)

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Guest

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Guest's picture
Guest

I have what most academics would call the perfect job, but it is in a horrible location, for me at least! If I had to do it over, I would have extended my previous contract and stayed where I was before, but I wanted to "move on" to bigger things. Now, I'm only 5 months at this job and I'm ready to move. This was a big mistake. I'm young, single, and female and I'm living in a town where everyone (no kidding) is coupled and/or elderly. The closest city is an hour away and getting there is boring at best, treacherous at worst.
Take my advice, if you're like me and your job is not your life, pick location over the job...especially if you're single!

Guest's picture
Walter Daniels

I'm on the process of building a web-based business, so as long as I have good link speed (DSL min), I could go almost anywhere. I'm almost (80%) paraplegic, so some of the Western States are out of the running. I'm also very strongly Libertarian, which crosses off some of the North Eastern States, along with Hawaii and California.
Although it sounds as if I wouldn't move from Indiana, I would if the right place came open. The problem for most people is that the "perfect job," is more than just the job. It involves pay, commute times, neighborhoods, cost of living, etc. If you focus only on the money, you end up with places that have a high cost of living. If you spend so much to live there that you make "less money," then it isn't really the "perfect job."
Moving across town, or inside the state, is an easier decision than across the country.

Guest's picture
Henri

For the perfect job I would move anywhere in the world. I am also able to do that at my age, I feel there are two ages that should allow you to follow your dreams, that is right after college when you life is beginning as an adult and you need to find what you want out of life and after you have raised your family you are on your own and are ready to start your life dreams if you have not already done so.

Another country offers us a different chance to live a different kind of life we had in our home country and sometimes, just sometimes, we end up seeing the grass is not always greener and appreciate where we live a little bit more. You only have one life, live it with no regrets and explore all the possibilities it has to offer, trust me..IT DOES GO BY IN A FLASH.

Guest's picture

Set your life time easier take the loans and everything you require.

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Candi

Since I'm 47 and still not sure what I want to be when I grow up, then SURE I'd move for a great job. (Just in case my boss is reading this, I have to say that I already have a great job.) Seriously, if it was six months from now when both kids have moved out of my house and I'm debt free except for my mortgage, I'd definitely move for the right opportunity. It would be hard to leave my co-workers who are supportive and the reason the term "team players" was first coined. But if the job was in Italy, how could I refuse?