CapRelo Blog

Upcoming Relocation Shows and Events - March

Posted by Amy Mergler on Thu, Feb 23, 2017


We will be attending and/or sponsoring the following upcoming events because it’s a great opportunity for us to meet new people, stay abreast of latest relocation trends and meet with trusted partners. If you’re attending, look for us and say hi. 


New England Relocation Association mid-Winter Mingle and Meeting

March 8th & 9th

Location: Four Points Sheraton, Norwood, MA

Attendee: Pete Larkin

The NERA mid-winter meeting will feature corporate and supplier roundtable discussions and presentations on global multigenerational workforces and working effectively across cultures (with a focus on India).

Click here to register for the events.



Charlotte Metro Area Relocation Council

March 9th

Location: Crowne Plaza Executive Park, Charlotte, NC

Attendee: Tracey Scott

CMARC's quarterly meeting will focus on Real Estate and the Economy in 2017.

Learn more and register for the event here.




2017 Virginia SHRM State Conference

March 12th - 15th

Location: Williamsburg Lodge, Williamsburg, VA

Attendee: Tracey Scott

The theme of this year's VA SHRM state conference is The Joy of HR: Celebrating our Profession and "Cooking Up" Great HR Ideas and Content with the Right Ingredients, the Best Recipes, & the Proper Techniques. The conference will feature a number of keynote speakers, breakout sessions, networking opportunities, certification preparation courses and opportunities to earn certification credits.

To find out about the event and to register for the conference, click here.




2017 Best of the West Conference

March 14th

Location: Courtyard Scottsdale Salt River, Scottsdale, AZ

Attendee: Patrick Cacho

The ARA Best of the West Conference includes discussions on government affairs, cultural competence and more, as well as a corporate panel on How to Do More with Less and a silent auction benefitting the Phoenix Rescue Mission

Click here for more information and to register.





Southeastern Regional Relocation council Spring 2017 Conference

March 22nd - 23rd

Location: Omni Orlando Resort, ChampionsGate, FL

Attendee: Scott Williamson

The SRRC Spring Conference will focus on The Future of Work and includes panel discussions, industry updates and presentations by top industry professionals. 

For more information, click here.





Dulles SHRM Chapter Breakfast Meeting

March 22nd

Location: Hidden Creek Country Club, Reston, VA

Attendee: Tracey Scott

The March meeting of the Dulles SHRM Chapter features guest speaker Shannon Polly, who will address the external and internal aspects of presence.  

Find out more here.





Greater Washington Employee Relocation Council Membership Mingle & MEETING

March 28th & 29th

Location: TBD for the Mingle and Top of the Town, Arlington, VA for the Meeting

Attendee: Jean Marotta

To register, click here.





Global Business News Event

March 30th

Location: Downtown Club, New York, NY

Attendee: Pete Larkin

The Global Business News event will include discussions on building and retaining resilient mobile talent, Brexit's impact on real estate in New York and London and more.  

To learn more and register, click here.





If you can’t attend, please be sure to follow CapRelo on Facebook and Twitter for updates.

Topics: CapRelo Employees

February Relocation Survey

Posted by Amy Mergler on Mon, Feb 20, 2017

Thinking about changing your relocation program or just curious about what other organizations are doing? Each month, we'll feature a short survey and share our findings along with the next survey the following month. Below are the results for last month's survey and this month's survey questions.

jANUARY Survey Results

1. Does your company have an executive relocation policy in place?

57% of respondents have an executive relocation policy, 20% do not and 14% are unsure.

2. Which of the following features describe your executive relocation policy? (Choose all that apply)

Comprehensive, not complex: 50%
Anticipates problems before they arise: 0%
Addresses real estate issues: 33%
Includes robust Household Goods assistance: 33%
Builds in bonus incentives: 17% 

3. What is/are the goal(s) of your executive relocation policy? (Choose all that apply)

Eliminate distractions for your transferring executive: 80%
Achieve a quicker return to productivity: 40%
Eliminate reasons why an executive might turn down a relocation offer: 60%


This month's survey addresses employee relocation costs.  

Create your own user feedback survey

Topics: relocation policies

What Does a Relocation Package Include?

Posted by Amy Mergler on Thu, Feb 09, 2017

home-relocation-1.pngDue to changes in the economic climate, many companies looked to cut costs by offering full relocation benefits packages primarily to higher-level employees, with newer hires and those on the lower rungs of the corporate ladder often left to manage the details (including many unreimbursed expenses) for themselves. In some organizations, employees were reimbursed only after the move for any but the most basic moving expenses. However, smart companies looking to recruit and retain top talent, are realizing the advantages of offering relocation expense coverage for even newer hires.

Learn more about developing relocation policies in our free guide. 

Many organizations either designate an in-house relocation manager to help oversee the move from beginning to end or, increasingly, turn this complex job over to a professional relocation management company.

What can today’s transferee expect in a relocation package? Much will vary based on position within the company, the industry and the location. However, in most standard relocation packages, a transferee can usually expect his or her company to offer some, or all, of the following provisions:

  • House hunting expense reimbursement for a new residence, which may also include childcare costs enabling parents to focus on the business of finding a residence without the distraction of little ones. Most companies pay for at least one or two house hunting trips in the new location.
  • Real estate and rental expenses for selling an existing residence are also covered by most employers as a basic benefit. These expenses usually include agent sales commissions and related fees, closing costs, transfer taxes and fees and other moving-related expenses. For renters who may need to break a lease, the company will reimburse for any penalties incurred.
  • Moving household goods between the old and new location, including packing, transporting, insuring and setting up furnishings and other goods in the destination location.
  • Storage expenses for household furnishings until a new residence is ready for move-in, usually for 30 to 90 days, depending on the policy and individual circumstances.
  • Transportation to the new location, whether airfare or reimbursement of mileage if the trip can be made by auto. For longer hauls when a transferee must travel by air or train, companies will often reimburse the costs of moving a personal auto to the new destination.
  • Temporary living expenses, such as interim rental housing for 30 to 90 days (depending on policy and individual circumstances), upon arrival to enable the transferee to meet critical starting deadlines.
  • Miscellaneous expenses associated with the relocation. These could include unexpected out-of-pocket expenses, costs of meals en route to the final destination as well as well as during house hunting, spouse employment assistance, new driver’s license and other fees charged by the new state or country, as well as for childcare, eldercare and other dependent care costs.

While it’s still true that the higher the level of an employee’s status within an organization, the more comprehensive and inclusive will be the relocation package, more savvy companies are offering to underwrite relocation costs even for newer employees as a means of attracting and keeping their top talent. Each company has its own benefit structure and policies vary, so potential transferees need to understand from the outset what is and isn't included (but could be negotiable) to secure the best deal on relocation packages.


Topics: relocation packages, job relocation, standard relocation package, employee relocation

Meet Laura Wilkins, Global Assignment Manager

Posted by Amy Mergler on Thu, Feb 02, 2017

Laura Wilkins

We recently sat down with Laura to find out more about her and what she enjoys doing in her spare time.

Who is "Laura Wilkins?" – Where do you come from, what is your background, what do you do? 

I am a Global Assignment Manager for CapRelo’s Global Mobility Team.  As a Global Assignment Manager, I serve as the main point of contact for employees moving internationally. I am responsible for coordinating all aspects of the relocation/assignment and managing the process through completion.  I also work closely with and manage all of the day-to-day service partners to ensure that the relocation/assignment is completed as smoothly as possible.

How long have you been with CapRelo, and what is your favorite part about your position?

I joined the CapRelo team in February 2016.  Prior to that, I spent 9 years with another relocation management company called Mobility Services International. During my time there I worked on both the International and Domestic relocation teams, respectively. I personally have relocated many times within the U.S., living in Massachusetts, New Hampshire, California, Indiana and Hawaii, so I can sometimes understand what employees and their families are going through.  My first “real” experience with cultural diversity came while I was getting my Bachelor’s degree at Hawaii Pacific University.  Being a relatively small university, it represented all 50 states and nearly 80 different countries providing great introductions to many different regions.  

My favorite part of my job is becoming a member of each family that I work with.  Some of these families come and go very quick, but others stay with me for several years.  It’s very rewarding to know that you helped a family get to a new location and helped them get settled as quickly as possible.  Each family is different and may have very different needs.  You never know what the next phone call or email will bring.

What do you do in your spare time, what are some of your interests?

I’m very lucky, I work out of my home office in New Hampshire close to both the ocean and the mountains.  During the summers, you can find me and my family at the beach or spending time at our camp in the White Mountains.  In the winter you will find me curled up with a good book.  I love to look at the snow, but boy is it cold out there!


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Topics: CapRelo Employees

Upcoming Relocation Shows and Events - February

Posted by Amy Mergler on Thu, Jan 26, 2017


We will be attending and/or sponsoring the following upcoming events because it’s a great opportunity for us to meet new people, stay abreast of latest relocation trends and meet with trusted partners. If you’re attending, look for us and say hi. 


San Antonio Regional Relocation Council Meeting

February 15th

Location TBD

Attendees: Scott Williamson

Learn more about the San Antonio Regional Relocation Council.



Austin Relocation Council Mobility Shark Tank

February 16th

UT Commons Learning Center, Austin, TX

Attendees: Scott Williamson

Companies will present mobility innovations and trends in interactive Shark Tank style presentations during this month's Austin Relocation Council event.

Learn more and register for the event here.




Bay Area Mobility Management 2017 Annual Conference

February 22nd

Crowne Plaza Hotel, Foster City, CA

Attendees: Patrick Cacho, Dan Keating, Moné McLucas

This year's BAMM Annual Conference will recognize "Superheroes of Global Mobility" during a one-day event that will provide insight on relocation industry trends and an opening session panel discussion on empowering talent.

To find out about the event and to register for the conference, click here.




North Texas Relocation Professionals February Luncheon

February 22nd

Omni Dallas Hotel at Park West, Dallas, TX

Attendees: Scott Williamson

NTRP's February luncheon will feature a presentation by Clinical Professor at Mays Business School/TAMU, Detlef Hallerman, PHD. 

For more information, click here.





TEXAS RELOCATION Network February Event

February 23rd

Cascades Conference Center, The Colony, TX

Attendees: Scott Williamson

The TRN February event will include a keynote address by Janie Havel, Economic Development, Governor's Office; panel discussions on Lump Sum and Safety; and a capstone speech by Suzie Humphreys. 

For more information, click here.





Forum for Expatriate Management Global Mobility Conference

February 28th

Hyatt Regency, Houston, TX

Attendees: Scott Williamson, Pete Larkin

The FEM annual global mobility conference will include content-focuses streams, workshop sessions, interactive roundtables, case studies and presentations from senior global mobility leaders.  

Click here to learn more about the conference and to register.





If you can’t attend, please be sure to follow CapRelo on Facebook and Twitter for updates.

Topics: CapRelo Employees

January Relocation Survey

Posted by Amy Mergler on Fri, Jan 20, 2017

Thinking about changing your relocation program or just curious about what other organizations are doing? Each month, we'll feature a short survey and share our findings along with the next survey the following month. Below are the results for last month's survey and this month's survey questions.

December Survey Results

1. Does your company process relocation-related tax matters in-house or do you out-source?

100% of respondents out-source the processing of relocation-related tax matters.

2. What is your top challenge associated with relocation-related tax matters?

67% of repondents report that keeping current on tax laws is their top challenge. 33% indicate that tax reporting/forms are their top challenge. 

3. If your company provides tax gross-up as a benefit to your transferees, which method do you use for calculating gross-up?

33% of respondents use the flat method for calculated gross-up. 67% did not know which method is used. 


This month's survey addresses executive relocation policy features.  

Create your own user feedback survey

Topics: executive relocation package, relocation policies, employee relocation

Calculating Tax Gross Up

Posted by Nicole Overholt on Fri, Jan 13, 2017

tax-calculator.jpgIt's said that death and taxes are the only certainties in life. I'll leave the answer to that question to the great philosophers. However, one thing is an absolute certainty: taxes are a fact of life.

This is particularly true in the employer, employee relationship. The government requires that the employer withhold taxes from the employee's paycheck. Some would call this wise on the government's part, others wouldn't be so kind. In the corporate world, practically everything is taxed, including aspects of relocation packages provided to employees.  Most relocation expenses associated with a move, whether it is a reimbursement made to a transferee or a payment made to a vendor on the transferee’s behalf, is required to be reported as taxable income to the employee and is subject to IRS supplemental withholding regulations.

Find out more about relocation and taxes in our free guide.

Can you imagine the look on your employee's face when you gently explain that the generous relocation benefits provided will increase his or her tax burden? It is a guarantee, the once happy employee's mood will change quickly and not for the better.  Well, fortunately for these employees, a portion of the tax liability of the relocation package can be covered by tax assistance (gross up) paid by the employer. Unfortunately, grossing up can add 55% or more to taxable relocation costs. If you consider the obvious benefit to the employees’ long-term happiness, it is money well spent.

Basically a tax gross up occurs when the employer adds to the taxable relocation amount to assist with the tax liability of the addition of taxable relocation costs to an employee's income. For example, if the relocation costs include $5,000.00 taxable dollars, the employer may pay a total of $7,500.00 so that the employee gets the full benefit of the $5,000.00, as the estimated taxes of $2,500.00 are paid by the employer. 

If you are in planning a relocation move, getting your hands on IRS Publication 521, "Moving Expenses" and Publication 523, "Selling Your Home," available at would be a good place to start to fully understand IRS regulations regarding relocation expenses.

3 main ways to calculate a tax gross up

1. Flat Method 

The flat method is a flat percentage calculated on the taxable expenses and then added to the income.  For example, an employer will gross up at a rate of 25% for taxable expenses.  If the transferee is paid $1,000, the gross up would be 25% of this, or $250, and therefore the transferee would receive a benefit of $1,250 total.  Note that the gross up is also considered taxable income and may create an additional tax liability to the transferee.

It’s important to note that this method likely doesn't cover the employee's tax liability since the gross up is taxable income. Additionally, this method is not compliant with supplemental withholding regulations.

2. Supplemental/Inverse Method 

This method is often used because not only are relocation expenses considered income, but the gross up is considered income too.  Therefore employers will pay the gross up on the gross up.  To determine the amount, add up all the tax rates (fed, state, OASDI, SS) and then divide the taxable expense by the sum of the tax rates. Take this number and subtract the taxable expense. 

Supplemental-Inverse Gross Up.png

This methodology covers gross up on the gross up, but may not accurately reflect the tax bracket of the employee.

3. Marginal/Inverse Method

This method is typically handled by a CPA or full-service relocation companies and also incorporates the tax on tax calculation. The difference is this methodology takes into account employee income and IRS Form 1040 tax filing status. In most cases policy dictates that only company-earned income will be considered and other forms of income, such as spousal income or investment income, won't be taken into account.

These three methods represent the nitty gritty of grossing up taxable relocation expenses to assist with the employee's relocation tax liability. While one can do the calculations, it is always wiser to seek the help of an experienced relocation experts.

Free All-Inclusive Guide  Relocation and U.S Taxes

Although this written communication may address tax issues, it is not a covered opinion as described in Circular 230.  Therefore, to ensure compliance with requirements imposed by the IRS, we inform you that any tax advice contained in this communication (including any attachments), unless expressly stated otherwise, was not intended or written to be used, and cannot be used, for the purpose of (i) avoiding tax-related penalties under the Internal Revenue Code or (ii) promoting, marketing or recommending to another party any tax-related matter(s) addressed herein.

Topics: talent retention, tax impact of relocation, calculating tax gross up, talent management

How Do Company Relocation Packages Work?

Posted by Amy Mergler on Thu, Jan 05, 2017

What Is a Relocation Package?

moving-in.jpgWhen a company offers an employee long-term employment in a location more than 50 miles from the current work location, a transfer is undertaken by the company, which usually covers the employee’s reasonable moving and other work-related expenses. By offering transferees a relocation package, employers provide comprehensive financial and other types of assistance to relieve the employee and their family of the expensive burden of relocation. A well-developed relocation package not only provides peace of mind as well as incentive to accept the job offer for the transferring employee but reflects positively on the company’s reputation for attracting top talent.

The Components of a Quality Relocation Package

Generally, a good relocation package can be expected to cover the expenses of a moving company, including packing, transporting and, if necessary, storing the employee’s goods if awaiting purchase or rental of a new home. If the employee needs to sell a current house, a relocation package may cover the costs of real estate agent fees and house-hunting expenses, such as ground or air travel, hotels and food.

Additional smaller expenses, often termed “miscellaneous expense allowance” for items such as driver’s license fees, en route out-of-pocket cash outlays and other costs associated with moving to a new location are considered standard in most packages.

Who Gets a Relocation Package?

While it is becoming more common for new, junior-level employees to also be offered relocation opportunities, typically the higher the employee’s rank within the organization, the more extensive the covered expenses of a relocation package. A recent graduate just starting their career may have only the basic expenses of moving, while a vice president will often have additional services covered, such as child care while house hunting, as well as airfare and car rentals, lodging and meals for the employee and his/her spouse.

How are Expenses Covered?

Assistance may consist of lump sum cash payments toward expenses, direct billing by the company for all moving expenses or reimbursement after up-front payment by the employee.

Relocation is an area where job candidates and new hires may have a bit more ground to negotiate, as it usually costs much less to move an employee than to pay a higher salary. In fact, a Worldwide ERC survey from 2015 reported that companies spent an average of $71,803 in 2014 to move newly hired homeowners and $23,766 to move newly hired renters.

The Takeaway

Most companies want to save as much money as possible in the course of job transfers while still ensuring that the employees and their families are comfortable and ready to get to work as soon as they arrive in the new location. When used a recruiting tool, a strong relocation package can make a difference in attracting the best job candidates – a critical factor in remaining competitive in a global job market.


Topics: relocation packages, relocation process, employee relocation

Upcoming Relocation Shows and Events - January

Posted by Amy Mergler on Thu, Dec 29, 2016


We will be attending and/or sponsoring the following upcoming events because it’s a great opportunity for us to meet new people, stay abreast of latest relocation trends and meet with trusted partners. If you’re attending, look for us and say hi. 


Dulles SHRM Chapter Meeting & Dinner

January 18th

Hidden Creek Country Club, Reston, VA

Attendees: Tracey Scott

The January chapter meeting of the Dulles SHRM will feature industry expert Nancy Singer, who will discuss "Dangerous Documents: Avoiding Land Mines in Your Records and Emails." 

Find out more and register for the event here.



Delaware Valley ERC Member Event

January 20th

Lucky Strikes, Philadelphia, PA

Attendees: Pete Larkin

The DVRC January member event is an opportunity to network with industry colleagues in a fun environment.

Register for the event here.




Global Business News Global HR San Francisco Conference

January 26th

Wells Fargo Headquarters, San Francisco, CA

Attendees: Patrick Cacho

This one-day conference includes moderated sessions on global mobility, mobility tech and data, assignment management and more. Three keynote sessions will feature Sandy Asch from the Alliance for Organizational Excellence, Manuel Cuevas-Trisán from Motorola Solutions and Mark Naidicz from AbbVie.

To register for the conference, click here.




Washington Business Journal Book of Lists Celebration 2017

January 26th

Arena Stage at the Mead Center for American Theater, Washington, DC

Attendees: Tracey Scott

This annual Washington Business Journal event recognizes power players from companies featured in their Book of Lists. The evening includes networking opportunities, food and drink and entertainment.

For more information, click here.





If you can’t attend, please be sure to follow CapRelo on Facebook and Twitter for updates.

Topics: CapRelo Employees

Are Relocation Packages Common?

Posted by Amy Mergler on Thu, Dec 22, 2016

Relocation SearchRelocation Then and Now

In years past, relocation assistance was offered almost exclusively to higher-level employees or specialized contractors. Today, with a more global economy and better-educated global workforce, the competition for the best talent is stronger than ever; consequently, smart companies are jumping on the relocation benefits bandwagon to attract and keep their best employees.

A 2013 survey by Atlas Van Lines reported an increase of 13 percent over a three-year period among companies offering relocation assistance. Companies are finally catching on to the fact that having a strong, attractive relocation package in place not only makes excellent business and branding sense, but has become a reality for those companies that wish to remain competitive.

Learn more about relocation packages in our free guide.

HR Professionals are Optimistic about Relocation

A 2015 Worldwide ERC® survey indicated an upward trend in U.S. transfer volumes: a 4% increase in relocation for current employees and a 7% increase for new hires. And companies anticipated another increase in the next year 

The Role of Millennials in Corporate Relocation

One thing that can be said for sure about this demographic group that is quickly taking over the workforce: they like to be on the go. Already having overtaken the Baby Boomers in the workforce, millennials are arguably the most technology- and travel-adept generation to every show up on the scene.

Millennials are changing the face of workplaces around the world, as they demand work environments that not only acknowledge their contributions by their need for flexibility and a good balance between work and private lives. In an Urban Bound study, a full 71 percent of millennials also expressed a desire to work abroad at some point in their careers – a fact that shouldn’t be lost on corporate recruiters.

The Takeaway

Relocation packages are increasingly becoming used not only as a way to keep in-house talent happy in the event of a transfer, but as an effective recruiting tool – particularly for globe-trotting millennials, who often relish the chance to travel and broaden their business and personal horizons. If companies find that they’re losing talent, especially as part of a transfer process, then a review of their relocation policies and strategies may be in order to keep up with the changing faces of the modern workforce.


Topics: relocation packages, relocation benefits, relocation policies, employee relocation

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