A few days ago I got an offer (yay!). I have about another week before they want a decision. Over the last few days I have been tallying up costs for start up. When should I start negotiating?

And here’s the bigger question: my wife and I are expecting our first child basically soon as the fall semester starts – how do I broach the topic of a single semester deferral? I hate to do this but we have a lot of worry about transitioning during such a sensitive time (and their health insurance policy does not allay our concerns plus we have zero connections there and I worry about my wife’s isolation as I start a new position). This would be the number one thing for me to take the job.

So how would I go about the negotiation? Would I say A is number one thing I need, then B, then C etc? I should I start ASAP? Should I e-mail where I can cleanly layout reasons for each desire?

In regards to the deferral request, how do you envision the school to respond? It is a small department so not sure how they could absorb the workload. I was planning on going into detail how I would use my deferred time to accomplish tasks that would benefit the school (e.g. grant applications, work on outreach program, prep for spring classes, be willing to take heavier load in spring, get research ready for students etc). I doubt the school will completely dismiss my caution but also worried that deferral will be too much for them to bear.

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