Should I Put My Address on My Resume?

Should I Put My Address on My Resume?

You may be hesitant about adding your address information or have questions about what contact information to add to your resume. Learn how to appropriately list your contact information on your resume and when to avoid listing your address.

Written by Ed Moss • Last updated on May 11, 2021

A mailing address used to be a staple when writing a resume.

Nowadays, it’s become a bit more confusing when and when not to provide a hiring manager with an address.

In this guide, we will cover when and why you should include an address, including some pros and cons that come along with it.

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Adding your address to a resume is a traditional expectation from hiring managers.

But what is the expectation for more modern resumes?

The answer ultimately depends on several factors, including:

  • The location of the job
  • Whether the job description specifically asks for an address
  • How relevant the address is to the job

A hiring manager is unlikely to communicate via physical mail, so they are also unlikely to use your address as a method for contacting you.

Instead, employers will likely use addresses as a point of reference for:

  • Where an applicant lives
  • The applicant’s proximity to the job
  • Whether or not the applicant will need to relocate

Being Mindful of Time Zones on a Resume

If you are applying for a job in a different timezone than your own, this can be important information to relay.

It is of the utmost importance for you to respond quickly when an employer contacts you.

If you have not relayed that you live in a different time zone, an employer may end up contacting you when you are unavailable!

Making yourself available throughout the hiring process is key.

To do so, you need to be clear about what time zone you are in.

You can also bring this up once you have reached the interview stage as well.

It is crucial to be ready and willing to talk with employers once they have decided to put you through to the next phase of hiring.

How to Write an Address on a Resume

Once you have decided to include your address on a resume, the next most important step is formatting the address correctly.

First and foremost, you must place the address in the correct area of your resume.

Typically, this will be within the contact information section that follows directly after your name.

Here is a quick example of a contact information section:

Incorrect:

John Doe
123 Wallaby Way New York, NY, 10001
johndoe@gmail.com, (123) 456-7890

Why It’s Wrong: When writing out your address, you want to keep your contact information looking as neat as possible. By combining too much information onto one line, it ends up looking jumbled and hard to read.

Correct:

John Doe
123 Wallaby Way
New York, NY, 10001

johndoe@gmail.com
(123) 456-7890

Some important notes from the correct example include:

  • The address has the same alignment as the name and the rest of the information
  • The address is on two separate lines
  • The address is a smaller font than the name, allowing the name to stand out more effectively

Formatting Options

When formatting your address, you have a few different options:

Format Option 1: Writing your full address on a resume

John Doe
123 Wallaby Way
New York, NY, 10001

Benefits of writing your full address: This is the most specific address you can provide. It gives employers all the information they need to know about your location and your proximity to their business.

Format Option 2: Writing just the city, state, and zip code

John Doe
New York, NY, 10001

Alternatively, you can also omit the zip code for a more generalized location, like so:

John Doe
New York, NY

Benefits of including only the city, state, and zip code: Greater privacy by not disclosing your street address. The addition of a zip code helps employers to pinpoint exactly your exact location within a city

Format Option 3: Writing only the region

John Doe
New York City Region

Benefits of writing the region: This format is good for job applicants who live nearby a job location, but are not in the exact same county or state. For instance, our John Doe example may live in New Jersey but is willing to commute to NYC. This format is good for relaying that kind of information.

Format Option 4: Writing an intention for relocation

John Doe
Relocating to Los Angeles, CA

Benefits of writing an intention for relocation: When you are planning to move, informing employers of your intent to relocate is key. This is especially true if the location of the job is in the same place where you are moving! If the relocation is still several months away, it may also be helpful to include the date when you plan to move.

Pro Tip: Do you feel completely lost when it comes to formatting your resume? Check out our free guide on How to Choose the Correct Resume Format in 2021. We also offer resume templates for our registered users!

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The Pros and Cons of Writing an Address on a Resume

Now for the fun part!

There are both pros and cons to including an address on a resume.

Understanding the potential benefits and pitfalls of including your address is key.

Here are our top 4 pros and top 3 cons when it comes to including an address on a resume:

Pros

1. Optimizes Your Resume for Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS)

Competition for jobs can be extremely high.

As a result, hiring managers can end up with hundreds of applications and resumes to look through.

Employers use Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS) to sort through resumes with greater speed.

ATS software can automatically filter and sort resumes submitted for a specific job.

An ATS uses specific keywords and guidelines to eliminate resumes that are not a good fit for the job.

The inclusion of an address is one of the key factors that ATS software scans for.

If the employer you are reaching out to uses this software, the ATS may discard your resume if there is no address!

Other elements of a resume that ATS look for include:

  • Typos and grammatical errors
  • Specific keywords (i.e. teamwork, communication, etc.)
  • Relevant skills
  • Proper formatting
  • Simple section titles
Hint: Do you need more help optimizing your resume? Check out our guide on How to Write the Perfect Resume in 2021!

2. Helps with Verifying Your Identity

Employers may use your address for many purposes, including verifying your identity.

If you have a specific address attached to your name, this can help employers when running background checks.

It also helps them to keep more accurate and specific records!

By including your address, you enable employers to look you up in government systems with greater ease.

This can ultimately show that you are being considerate of the employer’s needs and time!

3. Hiring Managers Expect to See It

As mentioned earlier, the inclusion of an address on a resume is a traditional expectation of hiring managers.

Excluding your address may not sit well with employers who are expecting to see it.

This can lead to a negative first impression – something you want to avoid at all costs!

Because many hiring managers still expect to see an address, it is often recommended to include location information in some form.

Luckily, as we covered above there are many different formatting options when it comes to listing your resume.

This allows you to choose a format that you are comfortable with while still meeting employer expectations.

4. Builds Credibility in Your Resume

Excluding your address can sometimes be a red flag to employers.

They may begin to wonder if you are hiding something from them!

The inclusion of an address on your resume shows employers you are willing to provide the necessary information they need.

It will also help to make a more positive first impression.

Ultimately, you want to take as many opportunities to build trust and rapport with your resume as possible.

Including your address is a good way to keep hiring managers from tossing out your resume before reading your qualifications!

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Cons

1. Your Location May Affect Your Candidacy

There are two main forms of bias you may encounter when including an address:

  • Location Bias: Location bias involves discrimination based on your physical location. For instance, let’s say a job applicant who lives in Miami, FL is applying for a job in Pheonix, AZ. They may encounter location bias due to being several states away.
  • Distance Bias: Distance bias occurs when a job applicant lives in the same city or state as the business but is still not close in proximity. This typically occurs when job applicants would have to commute more than 30 minutes to their place of work.

These kinds of biases are why many applicants choose to exclude their addresses from resumes.

As an alternative to excluding the address, consider removing your street address only!

A less specific address can help you get your foot in the door and avoid location or distance bias.

2. Can Clog Up Your Resume’s Visual Flow

Depending on how much information is already on your resume, the addition of an address may result in a flawed or unsightly design.

If your resume is already packed with information but you know you are going to need to include an address, it may be time to edit.

The ideal length for a standard resume is one page. If including your address pushes your resume outside of this limit, you will need to find a way to whittle it down more.

The truth is that your layout does matter. It can affect everything from employer first impressions to how well an ATS can read and categorize your resume.

Paying close attention to the visual flow of your resume is key!

3. Poses a Risk to Your Privacy and Security

A major concern for many job applicants is the potential security risk when sharing personal information.

Listing your full name and address can put you at risk for:

  • Identity theft
  • Invasion of privacy
  • Misuse of your personal information (i.e. selling your info to marketers without permission)

Thankfully, there are laws in place to protect you from employers misusing your information.

Nonetheless, it can still be nerve-wracking to include your exact address.

Plus, you may feel uneasy about a company’s digital security measures.

If the proper security measures are not in place, a security breach could lead to a leak of your information.

This is a major reason why many applicants choose to exclude their street addresses from their location information.

Pro Tip: Always verify that the company is legitimate and the job posting is real before submitting your personal information! Only you can ensure you are safe from identity theft.

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How to Include Your Address on a Resume without Harming Your Job Search

Clarity is key when it comes to providing your address on a resume.

When deciding what format to use when writing your address, consider the following:

  • Will location or proximity effect your candidacy?
  • Are you planning to move in the near future?
  • Are you uncomfortable sharing your exact address?

Sharing your address is ultimately another way to convey information to employers.

The different formatting options we have discussed each have their own benefits depending on the context.

If you are unsure of your employer’s expectations, opting for the “City, State” format may be best.

This provides a clear answer for where you are located without divulging too much personal information.

The “City, State” format will also enable you to pass ATS scanning!

Though a formal street address is certainly preferred by ATS, having location keywords can also do the trick.

Final Takeaways

The answer to whether or not you should include your address on a resume is…well, it depends!

There are certainly advantages to including an address, such as optimizing your resume for ATS software and building credibility with employers.

On the flip side, sharing too much personal information can expose you to discrimination and pose a risk to your privacy and security.

We offer these 5 key takeaways to help you decide when and how to include an address:

  • When in doubt, use the “City, State” format!
  • If you plan to relocate, always make note of this for employers to see.
  • Be proactive about protecting your personal information! Always check the legitimacy of job postings before applying.
  • Always place an address or location within your contact information. Your contact information should always fall below your name.
  • Stay vigilant about keeping your resume’s layout looking good! A poorly designed resume can be a major turn-off to employers.

For more help with creating your ideal resume, check out all of our free guides and resume examples!

Ed Moss is an author for Easy Resume

Ed is a co-founder of Easy Resume. His background in scaling teams at tech startups over the last decade has given him extensive experience and knowledge around how to hire top talent and build successful teams. He enjoys mentoring, coaching, and helping others reach their career goals. When he's not writing about career-related advice, he's playing with his dog, Lilo, or going on long hikes in upstate New York.

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