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Checklist: Changing Jobs


Chances are you'll change jobs more than once during your career. A job change can be exciting and daunting at the same time – and it will probably have financial implications. We're here to help you through the process. You might also like this checklist to address the issues that apply to you.

Review your financial situation

  • Save six months' worth of living expenses for emergencies. 
  • Review your budget, and increase the amount allocated to saving and investing, if possible. 
  • Develop and adhere to a monthly budget to help stay on track toward your goals.

Evaluate financial considerations

  • Consider establishing direct deposit for your paychecks.
  • Participate in your employer-sponsored retirement plan. Sign up for payroll deduction so it's automatic. Invest at least enough to earn an employer match, if applicable.
  • If you're relocating:
    • Determine who will pay relocation expenses.
    • Consider differences in the cost of living.
    • Determine whether you will rent or buy.
    • Consider transportation costs to your new job. Will you need a new car? How long is your commute?

Understand your benefits

  • Understand coverage and eligibility requirements for health insurance.
  • Learn what your options are for health savings accounts (HSAs), if available.
  • Discuss disability insurance needs and eligibility for individual coverage, if applicable.
  • Enroll in appropriate benefits and cancel any overlapping coverage, if necessary.
  • If you don't qualify for insurance right away, consider the federal Health Insurance Marketplace, COBRA continuation coverage, private medical insurance or enrolling in your spouse's plan.

Review your investment strategy

  • Review your investment strategy with your financial advisor, and make updates if appropriate.
  • Set up automatic contributions to investment accounts.
  • Evaluate your options for money in your previous employer's retirement plan, such as a 401(k), pension or stock options.
  • If you're earning more, discuss increasing contributions to retirement or college savings plans.

Income tax considerations

  • Consult with your tax professional to discuss:
    • Tax bracket changes
    • Relocation and job hunting expenses
    • Capital gains on a home sale
    • Severance and unused vacation pay, unemployment compensation, etc.

Estate considerations

  • Review your existing life insurance coverage to ensure that it meets your current needs and your beneficiaries are up-to-date.
  • Work with an estate-planning attorney to consider whether the following would be appropriate for your situation:
    • Will
    • Living will
    • Durable power of attorney
    • Health care power of attorney
    • Trust

How we can help

We are always available to talk about your goals and offer customized solutions to help you reach them. Talk to your financial advisor as you prepare for your new endeavor.

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