Should I Put My Address On My Resume?

By Abby McCain - Jun. 6, 2021

When you’re writing your resume, the advice you hear may vary wildly from source to source.

It can be difficult to navigate all this helpful information, especially when it comes to seemingly minute issues such as whether you should include your address or not.

Generally, though, the most accurate advice on issues like this is, “it depends.”

In this article, we’ll go over the factors to consider when deciding on whether or not to include your address on your resume.

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Including Your Address on a Resume

Traditionally, job applicants are expected to include their contact information, including their addresses, on their resumes.

Since few people send snail mail during the interview process, though, this practice can seem outdated. Not only that, but it takes up valuable space on your resume.

On the other hand, if you leave your address off, it can raise a red flag for hiring managers and the automated programs they use to initially sort through the applications they receive. Many of them expect an address, so the lack of one can make them think you’re trying to hide something, even if you aren’t.

Because of the pros and cons on each side of this issue, it’s best to make your decision based on the factors surrounding each job application.

One of the major arguments against putting your address on your resume is that it puts an unnecessary amount of personal information into the public arena. Because of this, you should always make sure you are sending your resume to someone trustworthy before you decide to include your detailed contact information.

If you smell something fishy about the job listing you’re applying for, spend some time looking up reviews about the company, verify any contact information you were given, and search the organization’s name followed by “fraud” or “scam” to make sure there haven’t been any previous problems.

Once you’re confident that the company is legitimate, it’s easier to decide to include your address on your resume. Just make sure you don’t add any additional personal details such as your social security number or birthday unless you’re applying for a federal position that requires this information.

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Quelling Companies’ Commuting Concerns

Many companies want to know where you live because they are trying to hire someone local. This may be because they want assurance that you won’t have an unreasonably long commute that causes you to be late and tired, or because the position requires a knowledge of the surrounding area.

As a result, if you leave off your address, it may cause them to reject your resume that much faster. If you’re applying for a remote job, however, your address is less important, but employers may still want to have an idea of what time zone you’ll be working in.

What to Do When You’re Relocating

If you’re planning on relocating to the area near the job you’re applying for, it’s a good idea to include this information on your resume.

Where you’d normally add your address, you simply have to state something like, “Relocating to New York City, New York.” It is even more helpful to also share when you’re planning to arrive by saying, “Relocating to Sacramento, California, May 2021.”

You can also put these details in your cover letter, but it’s a good idea to add something to your resume to help you get past the initial screening process.

If you are planning to relocate and leave off your address completely, your work history will reveal that you don’t live nearby, which can result in employers tossing out your application before you get a chance to explain that you’re planning to move.

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Required vs. Optional Address

Some positions, such as those for federal or other government organizations, require you to share your address when you first apply. This is usually because they need to run a background check on you before they can let you go any farther in the application process.

Other companies may want to do this as well, so if you’re applying to an organization like a school or high-profile tech company where you think this might be required, you should consider adding your address to your resume. Most companies will ask you for this information when they’re ready to run the check, though.

Other times, job postings may list location requirements for applicants. If this is the case, they will probably set up their screening processes to look for an address right off the bat.

To make sure your resume gets a second look, at least share your city and state or, better yet, your city, state, and ZIP code. If you don’t, you run a high risk of not making it to the interview stage.

Consider How You’re Applying for Jobs

When you’re deciding whether or not to include your mailing address on your resume, you should consider how you’re going about applying for jobs.

If you’re sending a personalized version of your resume directly to a hiring manager’s trustworthy email address or submitting it on the company’s website, it might be worth including your address so that you’ve covered all of your bases.

On the other hand, if you’re going to be handing out multiple copies at a job fair, you might not want to include your whole address in case a copy of your resume gets lost in the shuffle and ends up in someone else’s hands. This also goes for publicly posting your resume on third-party sites like LinkedIn, because it’s easy for anyone to find your information.

If you’re applying for a position that doesn’t list the company’s name or asks you to send your resume to a personal email address, play it safe and leave off your address in this case as well.

When Not to Use Your Address on Your Resume

In addition to situations where your information’s security might be a concern, there are a few other scenarios where sharing your address might not be a good idea.

  1. Knowing it’s a long commute. Some employers may cut your application if they see you have a long commute.

    If you are used to this lifestyle and the job you’re applying for is no farther away than your last one, you might save yourself from being rejected during the initial screening by not including your address, or at least not your full one.

    Don’t lie, but at least give yourself the chance to explain that it isn’t an issue by leaving out your address on your resume.

  2. Avoiding location bias. It’s an unfortunate truth that if you live in a less-than-desirable location, this can sometimes hurt your application’s first impression. While employers know they aren’t allowed to discriminate based on other factors, they can discard your application based on your perceived socioeconomic status.

    It isn’t right, but it does happen, so if you’re at all worried about this, leave your address off or give only generalities such as, “The Chicago Metro Area,” until you’re asked for more specifics. This will give you the opportunity to get farther into the process and show your true qualifications before any location-based prejudices kick in.

  3. Trimming your resume. Because it’s always a good idea to keep your resume to only one page in length, you may find yourself looking for ways to squeeze in all of your accomplishments.

    If you’re running out of room, your address is one of the first things that you can cut. Try shortening it to just your city and state or, if necessary, remove it completely.

    Including the work experience that makes you a great candidate is much more important than keeping your full mailing address.

Consider Resume Applicant Tracking Systems

Always remember that you need to craft your resume to make yourself attractive to the specific company where you’re applying. This means that you need to include as many of the keywords as possible from the job description, including your location, if that’s listed.

This is because many companies use automated screening programs to cut down on the number of unqualified applications making their way to human eyes. These programs scan for keywords, which means if you’re missing any of the major ones they’re looking for, you might not make it through.

Sometimes these programs also look for your contact information so that they can create a profile for you, and if they don’t find it, they may mark your application as incomplete and reject it.

To avoid this, consider adding at least your city, state, and ZIP code to your resume, especially if you’re applying for a position at a large organization, as these are more likely to use these screening systems. If you’re emailing your resume to a hiring manager, however, you probably won’t have to worry about this as much.

If you decide you don’t want to put your full street address on your resume but want to provide at least some indication of where you’re located, here are some examples of what you can say instead:

  • Tulsa, Oklahoma

  • Boston, MA 02134

  • Relocating to Tallahassee, Florida

  • Denver Metro Area

Sample Resume Without an Address

Wendy Peterson

Kansas City, MO | 333-111-2222 | wendyp@gmail.com

Summary: Interior designer who specializes in kitchens with five years of experience designing, budgeting, and managing remodel projects.

Work Experience

Kitchen Designer, August 2017-Present
Interior Designs, Co., Kansas City, MO

  • Designed 35 new kitchens and did 40 kitchen remodels for clients of all budget brackets

  • Managed project budgets to ensure cost-efficiency without sacrificing quality

  • Created detailed project reports to maintain transparency with clients on costs and materials

  • Coordinated with 3-6 contractors for each project and oversaw until completion to client’s satisfaction

  • Developed questionnaire to determine client priorities and design preferences

  • Implemented creative problem solving to overcome architectural challenges when creating new kitchen designs

  • Negotiated contracts with suppliers and contractors to ensure the best prices, saving over $20,000 in costs

Remodel Specialist, July 2015-July 2017
Remodels R Us, Kansas City, MO

  • Met with new clients to create plans for their kitchen remodeling projects

  • Created three initial designs for each client

  • Managed clients’ design requests while maintaining company standards

  • Coordinated with company contractors and provided blueprints and instructions

  • Handled quality control for each project throughout the process

  • Implemented new research methods for finding new trends and deals on materials

Skills and Certifications

  • AutoCAD certified

  • Advanced Microsoft Excel and Microsoft Word skills

  • OSHAA certified

Education

Bachelor of Arts in Interior Design, 2015
University of Chicago, Chicago, IL

Ways to Include Your Address on Your Resume (With Examples)

Here are a few ways you can choose to include your address in your resume’s contact info section:

  1. Full address. The comprehensive option, only to be used when you fully trust the recipient and believe that your precise location is relevant information for your application. Most folks shouldn’t use this, but here’s an example of a resume header with a full address:

    Jane Moore

    555 Elm St., Montgomery, AL 36043| 333-111-2222 | jane.moore@email.com

  2. Only city and state. For most open positions, this is a sufficient level of location information for hiring managers and recruiters. As long as you live in the vicinity, no systems should raise any red flags about your location. The only possible downside of this option is location or distance bias.

    With this option, you can choose to include your ZIP code (preferable for large companies that are almost certainly using applicant tracking systems) or leave it off if you’re applying to a small local business.

    Jane Moore

    Montgomery, AL 36043| 333-111-2222 | jane.moore@email.com

  3. Region or area. A good option if you want to avoid location bias as someone who lives in a neighborhood that folks may be prejudiced against. The only downside is that if you fail to also include a ZIP code, an ATS might not pick up on your address, leading to your resume being tossed out before reaching a human reader.

    Danil Reshka

    Miami Metro Area | 999-888-7777 | d.reshka@email.com

  4. No address. A risky idea for most applicants, but it might just work for some remote roles that truly don’t care where in the world you are. Just make sure that your other contact information is reliable and professional looking.

    Dhruv Johnson

    d.johnson@email.com | 333-111-2222 | www.linkedin.com/in/dhruv-johnson

  5. Relocating. Applicants who are relocating should give the city they’re moving to and a time frame. You can also choose to include your likely ZIP code, as this may help get past the ATS.

    Bill Trentson

    Relocating to Miami, Florida September 2021 | b.trenston@email.com | 333-555-6666

Pros and Cons of Putting Your Address on Your Resume

To summarize, let’s go over the pros and cons of putting your address on your resume:

Pros

  • It helps pass applicant tracking systems

  • Employer might require it for a background check

  • It doesn’t look like you’re hiding anything

  • Geography could work in your favor if you live close by

Cons

  • Privacy/security issues

  • Appears outdated

  • Distance and/or location bias

  • Looks clunky

Should Remote Workers Put an Address on Their Resumes?

While remote workers have less to worry about with regard to location or distance bias, they still need to consider including their location. At the very least, we recommend that remote workers include their city and state, to give hiring managers and recruiters an idea of your time zone.

The other side of that coin, however, is that employers may adjust their pay rate based on the cost of living where you live. Of course, the employer is going to find out where you live at some point, as they need this information to pay you legally and register with local tax authorities.

In other words, hiding this info during the application process probably won’t make a difference in the salary offer you’ll receive.

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Author

Abby McCain

Abby is a writer who is passionate about the power of story. Whether it’s communicating complicated topics in a clear way or helping readers connect with another person or place from the comfort of their couch. Abby attended Oral Roberts University in Tulsa, Oklahoma, where she earned a degree in writing with concentrations in journalism and business.

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