Relocation Loans: What They Are and How to Get One

Posted by Frank Gogol

Few experiences in life are as exciting and nerve-wracking as starting a new job. And for many visa holders in the U.S., beginning a new job means a major move. Whether is it’s a move from the east coast to the west coast for a tech job or the reverse for a job in finance, a big move will always be an added layer of stress when starting at a new company.

Much of that stress has to do with the financial aspect of moving.

Read on to learn about just how expensive your big move for a new job might cost you and about how a relocation loan can help!

How Much Does it Cost to Relocate?

Moving even across town is a pain. And when your move is a cross-country one, it only becomes an increasingly difficult and expensive experience.

But how much does it really cost?

Most people think of the obvious large costs involved with moving:

  • Hiring movers
  • Rent and security on a new apartment
  • Plane tickets

These things unto themselves can cost a lot. But it’s the smaller costs that most people don’t even consider until faced with them that really add up. Things like, but not limited to:

  • Moving supplies
  • Utility deposits
  • Moving Insurance
  • Surcharges for stairs
  • Surcharges for carrying items more than 75 feet.
  • Premium moving supply charges (blankets and dollies)
  • Tips for the movers

The reality of the matter is that in many cases, moving is an expensive experience and in most cases, people severely underestimate just how much it will cost.

How to Afford a Relocation

If you’re one of the lucky few, you’ll have landed a new job in a new city and your new company will cover the cost of your move and maybe even pay to help you get settled.

If you’re one of the lucky ones.

The unfortunate truth is that there’s a strong possibility that the company you will be working for won’t help you move, but that doesn’t mean that there’s there isn’t help.

Ask Family for Help

Just because your new job won’t help cover the cost of a move doesn’t mean there’s no hope. If and when this is the situation at hand for you, your next line of support will be your family.

There’s no shame in reaching out to parents, aunts and uncles, or even your more extended family for a little help with your move, especially if it’s to help you take advantage of a really good new opportunity. If you plan to ask your family for help, just remember to be gracious for any help that comes your way.

While you should go in with the mindset that you will just be borrowing this money with every intention of paying back, some of your family members might surprise you and simply gift the funds to you as a way of saying congratulations on your new opportunity. You never know.

Not everyone’s family is financially equipped to lend a hand or a few dollars, though, and that’s okay. You’ve got other options.

Utilize Peer-to-Peer Lending

While not as ideal or convenient borrowing money from family for your move, peer-to-peer (P2P) lending is another viable option to help get you where you need to be.

Peer-to-peer lenders are, generally, online services that pair up borrowers with lenders. These services facilitate that pairing process and make money off of the interest on the loans.

Unfortunately, P2P loans are not protected by any sort of government guarantee and the fairly strict risk assessments guidelines. What this means for immigrants and visa holders is that that there is a substantially lower chance of getting approved for a P2P loan than there is for an American Citizen. Things like lack of credit history and lack of job history can disqualify you from consideration.

None of this is to say that you will definitely be turned away by a P2P lender if you’re a visa holder. It’s just a forewarning that it’s a strong possibility for people who haven’t been in the U.S. very long or who are about to start a new job.

So, what do you do if you can’t turn to family and if you don’t think P2P lending is a viable option for you?

Taking a Relocation Loan with Stilt

If you’re out of options and need to move and get settled in a new city or risk losing your new job, a relocation loan is probably the answer you’ve been looking for. A relocation loan is simply a personal loan used to cover the cost of a big move.

Taking a personal loan with Stilt is simple and you can be approved for your loan within 24 hours. Read on to learn about the borrowing process with Stilt.

1. Fill Out a Simple Application Online

The first step to borrowing with Stilt is to fill out and submit an application online. The simple application asks for some personal details (name, phone number, address, etc) and some information about what you will use the loan for.

Once the application is submitted, you will receive a decision with 1 business day.

2. Upload the Necessary Documents

If you are approved for a Stilt loan, the next step will be for you to upload the necessary documentation.

Typically required documentation includes proof of income, bank account information, and other documents that will need to be verified to approve your loan.

One all of your documents have been uploaded and then verified, your loan will be disbursed.

3. Get Your Loan Funds

Once your loan has been approved, disbursal generally happens that same day. Different banks take different periods of time to process the transactions, but most borrowers see the funds in their accounts with 3-5 business days.

If you’re in need of financial assistance to make your move and start your new job, a relocation loan could be the answer you’re looking for. All you have to do is apply.

5 Tips to Save Money on Your Relocation

As has been thoroughly discussed above, moving is very expensive. But it can be less expensive if you’re willing to do a little extra work on your part. Check out the five money-saving tips below to bring down the cost of your move!

1. Pare Down Your Belongings

One of the easiest ways to reduce your moving costs is to move less stuff. For most people, packing up an apartment or a house can highlight just how much stuff they’ve accumulated over the years, and a big move is a perfect time to shed some of that excess.

Go through your belongings as your plan your move and if you haven’t used something in a long time or it’s redundant (i.e. two of the same pan), set it aside and donate it.

Some items, like unused video games and electronics, can be sold and that money can be put toward your moving costs.

2. Don’t Pay for Moving Boxes

Another way to save money on your move is to not buy moving boxes. Boxes, considering what they are and what they cost to make, are fairly expensive and the costs can really add up, especially if you have a lot to move.

Rather than buying boxes new, find ways to recycle and reclaim boxes. Did you order something from Amazon recently? Reuse the shipping box. Is there are Target or Walmart nearby? Head over and ask a worker what they do with their old boxes. Chances are they’re just getting recycled anyway.

3. Save Packing Supplies

Just like with moving boxes, packing supply costs can really add up quickly. But you can save money by utilizing readily available, free supplies from your everyday life.

Remember that Amazon box that you’re recycling as a moving box? It probably came with protective bubbles. That newspaper you get and read every day? These things and many other everyday items can be used in place of expensive packing supplies.

4. Shop Around for Movers

Paying for movers to ship your belongings to your new city will undoubtedly be the most expensive aspect of your big move. And while you can’t bring these costs down dramatically, you can still make sure you get the best price.

Make sure to research at least a few different movers and compare their prices to get yourself the best deal.

5. Consider Renting a Truck

One way you can dramatically reduce the cost of your move is by renting a truck and being your own moving company.

Sure, it means a lot more work for you, but if you’re tight on cash for your move it could potentially reduce your costs by thousands of dollars.


As has been explored above, moving is both exhausting and expensive, but it’s a necessary part of relocating for a new job opportunity in another city. And for visa holders and immigrants who are trying to get their piece of the American Dream, the importance can’t be overstated. But armed with the information above, your big move should at least be easier and at least a bit more affordable.

Do you have questions about planning and affording a move to a new city? Leave us a comment!

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