Smooth Move: Short-Term Moving Advice for Every Situation



Perhaps you’ve attracted the attention of the higher-ups at your job. Maybe you’ve been singled out for your work ethic or interpersonal skills. You may be preparing for a new learning opportunity, or just getting ready to make your mark in a new location. It could simply be that a friend or family member requires your presence for the time being. Whatever the reason, you’ve got a short-term move coming up, and it’s time to prepare.

There are several possible motivations behind any short-term move, including but not limited to:

  • A temporary job assignment, with the understanding that you’ll eventually return home to your current position
  • A permanent job assignment that requires your presence immediately, perhaps before you’ve had a chance to fully scope out long-term living arrangements in your new location
  • A program of study at a university or other facility of learning
  • Familial health issues

Your move can be an incredible chance to advance your career, build your skillset and foster relationships – but it also comes with some new hurdles. This guide will cover the basics of short-term relocation advice, including getting your finances under control, temporary housing tips and the actual moving process.

Covering the Costs of Relocation

Whether this is a temporary change of scenery or you’re in it for the long haul, relocation always comes with some expenses. Assuming that your move is professionally motivated, the good news is that you can generally count on employer-provided financial aid. The actual amount that your employer offers may depend on the specific nature of the move, as well as other details of your personal situation.

For instance, if you’re slowly transitioning into a new permanent position, relocation assistance is definitely something worth negotiating, especially if you have family members who will be uprooted along with you. But if you’re only temporarily needed in the new location, your employer may not be willing to cover the cost of moving your entire family to accompany you for a short time. Regardless of your exact situation, you should determine how often you can visit home on your company’s dime.

When moving for short-term job relocation, negotiating the terms is a fairly standard part of the process. Don’t feel nervous about bringing up the terms of your relocation. It’s important for you and your employer to be on the same page with regards to your recompense.

Before you start negotiating, think about what other expenses and hardships might surface because of the move, such as the following:

  • Higher cost of living in your new region (rent, groceries, etc.)
  • Cost of daily transportation between your new home and job site
  • Price and availability of any prescription medications in the new region
  • Nannies and other child-care services
  • Proximity, or lack thereof, of quality schools (if you’re moving with your children)
  • Short-term loans to cover moving expenses
  • Linguistic difficulties, and the cost of language lessons (if moving to a foreign country)

Spend some time creating a list that’s relevant to your situation, and be sure to write down each point. Negotiation and preparedness are important when it comes to obtaining a fair compensation package.

Finding a Place to Stay

Have you and your employer discussed whether the company will provide you with a residence for the duration of your assignment? Corporations often strike up temporary housing deals with apartment complexes or hotel chains in order to better cater to their inconvenienced workers.

These arrangements are advantageous for companies because they help employees stay content, feel appreciated and get motivated. A housing deal will also expedite the process of helping new arrivals get comfortable in their environment more quickly, which will allow them to focus on their work without a long transition period.

If corporate housing is not provided, you’ll have to find a place to live. Hotels are one potential choice, and easy to arrange, but the night-by-night cost tends to be prohibitive for anything longer than a week or so. Some hotels offer slightly reduced rates for long-term stays, but finding an apartment with a short-term lease is usually a less expensive and more comfortable option. Plus, apartments are generally more spacious and feel more like a home. That said, temporary apartment searching isn’t always easy in densely populated regions, so don’t write off the hotel idea entirely.


When it comes time to begin the search process, be persistent. Don’t assume that it’s a seller’s market simply because you happen to be moving to a nice city. Be sure to check out newer buildings with available rooms because landlords who are currently saddled with an empty property and a fresh mortgage may be more amenable to negotiating a short-term lease. Prices may be lower in less popular areas, so if you have transportation, be sure to consider neighboring communities as well.

Leaving Your Current Space Behind

Do you have a family or roommates currently sharing your home? If so, you can leave the property under their care. But if you are the sole resident of your current address, there remains the question of what to do with your house or apartment when you move elsewhere.

If your proposed move will be short enough and finances aren’t a major issue, it may make sense to continue paying for your residence even in your absence, particularly if you’re the owner in full. It’s typically a significant effort to sell or store major items and appliances. Plus, you have to consider your return back home. It’s convenient to have a place to return to immediately after you finish your assignment. You may even be able to cover your costs by renting out the space to other short-term travelers.

Holding onto a house or apartment isn’t a viable option for everyone. If you’re planning to be away for many months or your finances are a little thin, it makes sense to let go of your place, especially if you’re renting. If it’s up to you to find a new tenant, consider online listings, newspaper classifieds and community boards.


Whether you’re keeping your old place or not, it’s important to tie up any loose ends that may be tethering you to the area. Streamline your recurring tasks, such as the following:

  • Bills. Switch to an online platform if possible and consider automatic payments.
  • Postal services. Postpone or forward mail delivery, and cancel unnecessary deliveries like the daily newspaper.
  • Health services. Be sure you’re up-to-date on physical checkups, dental examinations, vaccinations and document renewals.

Packing for a Short-Term Move

Now that you’ve got your finances under control and an apartment, house or hotel lined up, all that’s left to do is take care of your belongings. When moving, many people realize how many things they’ve been holding onto, as well as the unnecessity of some of those items.

No matter your destination, packing light is generally the way to go. Here’s why:

  • It gives you greater flexibility in choosing where to go
  • It makes it easy to relocate again if necessary
  • It considerably reduces the expenses you’ll incur to transport everything

Your move is a fresh start and change of pace. There’s a certain feeling of freedom that comes with not being bogged down by unnecessary items. If you can avoid using a moving truck, that’s great. The most efficient movers can carry all essentials on their person.

In fact, if you’re preparing for an eventual permanent relocation, consider selling any large or easily replaced items as well. The period right before a move is the best time to clear the clutter from your life. Any money you make selling your items is money saved for long-distance transportation costs. Anything left over can be entrusted to friends and family, or moved into a storage facility in the meantime. Remember to find a climate-controlled solution for antiques and other delicate valuables.

You should take the following items with you, regardless of where you’ll be staying:

  • Several sets of clothing, both casual and business-appropriate
  • Bedding
  • Cell phone and charger
  • Laptop computer
  • Camera
  • An extension cord
  • Books and other reading materials
  • Toiletries and cosmetics
  • Basic first aid supplies
  • Pain/allergy relievers, and any prescription medication
  • Driver’s license, passport, copy of your birth certificate, and any other important documents
  • Photographs and other small keepsakes of personal significance
  • Umbrella, rain boots, and other gear for inclement weather

If your new residence is not fully furnished, consider bringing other small and convenient items, such as:

  • Pots, pans, and other cooking tools
  • Towels, tablecloths, and other linens
  • Dishes and flatware
  • Soaps and detergents

If you’re moving into a hotel room, or a furnished apartment or house, check in advance to see what fixtures will be provided. The bigger items, like a bedframe and desk, aren’t convenient to pack and move. Anything that isn’t offered, but that you still need, can generally be rented from a furniture provider who is local to your new location.


Renting furniture for a short-term move frees you from the obligation to find or transport your own. Renting means no big purchases or pricy conveyances, no messy set-ups, and no need to sell or donate unwanted items at the end of your assignment. Renting enables you to create a home away from home, and it gives you the flexibility to do it on demand without breaking the bank or wasting any time. Most items can be rented on a piece-by-piece basis, but there are also complete furniture rental packages to consider for the unfurnished apartment.

Short-Term Relocation Services

When you’re in need of short-term relocation services, turn to Interior Furniture Resources. A locally owned and operated business with nearly 50 years as an established leader in the industry, IFR’s experienced consultants are in the business of making your new house or apartment feel more like a home.

Pick from one of our prepared package offerings, or select furnishings, housewares, and electronics on a piece-by-piece basis. We offer an extensive inventory from which to choose, and rental terms may be as short as one month, or can last as long as you require.


IFR offers furniture made flexible!

Our sales team is motivated by your satisfaction, not any sort of commission. They will work closely with you to find the best rental option for your unique situation. You will never be pressured into making a quick decision or spending more than your budget allows.

IFR offers the lowest rates in the industry and will price match any offer by one of our competitors. This is our commitment to quality service — what we call “The IFR Edge.”

Your upcoming move is a big opportunity: why should you waste even a moment worrying over the minutia of furnishings?

Give IFR a call today at 717-657-3000, or toll-free at 1-800-347-9277 – or simply use our online contact form.