Are you looking for a quick win for your global mobility program? A small change with a positive impact on your mobility program? This is the first of many posts in our “Quick Wins” series. Each quick-win blog will offer ideas of straightforward changes that can be made to support your organization’s mobility principles. No one solution is going to fit everyone’s purposes, so in each post of the series, we hope you find at least one thing that can be a quick win for you. And if these quick wins are already part of your program, we hope you already see the benefits.
This month, we look at ways your policy can stand out from the crowd, providing that “extra something” (or somethings) that could help secure the talent you need.
Add Renter Support
The renter market is difficult these days. Offering assistance in searching for and securing a rental can ease and expedite a transition. A local relocation profession can educate a renter and prepare them by providing a wealth of support in a short period of time. The nominal cost that follows is worth it compared to the potential delays, disruptions, inefficiencies, and added cost a renter may incur on their own. In locations where a tenant fee is common, covering that expense or a portion of it can help renters avoid financial hardship.
Let Renters Purchase
There was a modest uptick in companies allowing renters to purchase between 2015 and 2019. This trend can be attributed to historically low interest rates, a more balanced real estate market than 2022, and a desire to provide support to renters who may have previously been homeowners. Since this trend is still ongoing, home ownership is emerging as a benefit to entice employees when relocation is necessary.
Although we find ourselves in a different real estate environment with increasing rates (still considered historically low), bidding wars, and purchases over list price, covering home purchase closing cost for a renter can be a recruiting tool. Research suggests that about one-third of companies now support this for some or all of their renters eligible for relocation. If offered, it is most often found in mid- to higher-tier policies.
Support Home Sale
Some companies are more comfortable grossing-up reimbursed home sale expenses, while many companies have been reaping the cost benefits of the Buyer Value Option (BVO) for years. There is a small risk of a home going into inventory, but this risk is usually outweighed by the tens of thousands of dollars in gross-up savings.
Utilize Direct Billing For Home Purchase Closing Costs
A direct bill means that clients, the relocation management company, and the mortgage lender have an agreement in which the lender pays for the approved purchase closing costs at the time of closing, relieving the employee of having to pay up front. Please note, the buyer is still responsible for attending the closing and paying non-eligible expenses, such as taxes, escrow funds, and insurance. Not all lenders provide direct billing, so it’s important to make sure that employees work with vetted, approved lenders with direct bill agreements in place.
Support Dual-Career Families
Research shows that just under half of employers recognize the career needs of relocating spouses or partners in a relocation package. This is one service where a little can go a long way. The average spouse/partner assistance support ranges between $1,500 to $2,000 and is geared toward their employment and community needs in the new location. The support can include a variety of expenses including professional marketing, job leads, local licensing/certification fees, childcare, local connections, and more.
Provide Pet Support
Pets are family members, too. There are various ways to relocate a pet, from driving the pet yourself to flying the pet door-to-door. The most common practice for companies that provide pet support is to provide reimbursement of eligible travel expenses, usually ranging from $250 to $1,000. If you want to provide first-class service, a pet relocation service can provide that extra special service to ease the transition for all involved. For more details on moving pets, please check our recent Guide to Moving with Pets.
If you are interested in implementing any of these quick wins, please reach out to your Aires representative.