Business owners may want to relocate to another state for several reasons. For example, a business located near the state line may receive economic development incentives for moving across the line or find the tax or legal climate there more friendly. Or, the target market for the product has changed, and the new state offers better access. In small or family-owned businesses, the owner may wish to relocate and transfer the company with them.
Here are some things to keep in mind when moving your business to another state.
Establish Yourself Legally
The steps for establishing your business legally in a new state depend upon its legal structure. A sole proprietorship, which is legally considered the same as the owner, just tells the IRS of its new address. The owner then cancels business licenses and permits in one state and obtains ones in the new state.
Businesses that are organized as LLCs or corporations will register in the new state. Depending on the laws of the state, you may have two options. The first is to close the business in one state and open it in the new state. The second is to keep the business open in the original state but register as a foreign company in the new state. Consulting with a tax attorney is essential since liquidating a business may have tax implications.
Develop a communications plan for telling employees about the move. If you hope some employees will relocate with your business, determine what types of relocation assistance you will offer, including whether you will provide job assistance for the spouse. Provide enough information to allow these employees to make an informed decision about relocating. If employees are not relocating, determine what severance packages you will offer.
Maintain clear communication with employees throughout the process. Announce the move, then also meet with employees individually about their situation. By being proactive, you will minimize potential performance issues.
Tell Clients and Potential Clients
Communicate with clients and potential clients through mass media, as well as one on one. Communicate directly with key clients, stressing your move’s positive aspects and how the relocation will benefit them. Send press releases to the newspapers in all cities where you have key clients and engage them on social media. Redo your marketing collateral and website to include the new address.
Plan and Execute the Physical Move
Plan for services at your new location, including Internet, VoIP, or other phone services. Different carriers will likely operate in your new state.
Plan your new space carefully. Draw a blueprint and determine the basics, such as the location of electrical outlets and phone jacks. If you use an interior designer, be sure they coordinate with IT staff to place cables and other connections.
Consider how to minimize productivity losses during the transition. For example, consider whether employees can work remotely during the move or whether you should schedule the move over a holiday. You’ll pay more for moving companies over holidays, but you might recoup the money spent on increased productivity.
Obtain quotes from several top movers who have experience in interstate office moves. Use discounts, but only for movers on your list anyway.
Moving your business to a new state presents many challenges. We can help you navigate those challenges through excellent planning and a moving team like no other. Contact us for a quote today. We can help relocate your business locally or long-distance.