With housing costs soaring, the concept of employer-based housing benefits is gaining traction as a potential game-changer in the job market. To understand this emerging trend, we surveyed 710 employees and 310 employers to gauge their views on these job perks.
This article will present the insights from our comprehensive survey, revealing how these benefits could influence job choices, employee satisfaction, and company policies in today’s challenging economy. Join us as we explore the impact and desirability of employer-based housing in the modern workplace.
- Over 1 in 4 employees would switch jobs for employer-sponsored housing benefits.
- Nearly 1 in 3 employees would prefer housing benefits over a pay raise.
- 43% of employees are willing to sacrifice PTO for housing benefits, with 26% ready to give up 10-15 days.
- 1 in 4 employers are considering offering housing benefits to employees in 2024.
- In 2024, employers providing housing benefits plan to offer an average of $6,201 in assistance per employee.
Employees’ Desire for Housing Benefits
In this first section, we’ll explore the growing interest among employees in housing benefits offered by employers and how it influences their job and career choices.
The significant dip in home affordability in recent years has led some companies to realize there’s a need to offer affordable housing programs to attract and retain workers. We also discovered a shift in benefit priorities among many of the employees we surveyed, with housing trumping paid time off (PTO), raises, and remote work for some.
Our survey found that over 1 in 4 employees would consider switching jobs if it meant gaining access to housing benefits. The desire for housing support over traditional benefits was even more pronounced, with 43% of respondents willing to sacrifice their PTO. Among them, 26% were ready to forgo 10-15 PTO days. Furthermore, nearly 1 in 3 employees said they would prefer housing benefits to a pay raise.
The interest in and availability of these benefits varied across industries. Those in the food and hospitality sector (61%) showed the highest likelihood of changing not just jobs but also careers for roles that offer such perks. And 40% of healthcare workers would consider changing jobs within their industry for housing assistance. Many remote workers felt similarly, with 47% willing to return to the office if housing benefits were part of the package.
At the time of our survey, only 13% of respondents were receiving any form of employer housing assistance, whether it was help for renting or buying a home. Employees in marketing (36%), finance (25%), and information technology (20%) were the most likely to be receiving these benefits.
The Ripple Effect
This next section explores the psychological impacts of employer-based housing benefits on employees. We also examine how people would feel about living in a neighborhood filled with their co-workers.
The resurgence of modern company towns, led by giants like Google, Meta, and Disney, marks a big shift in addressing housing challenges and enhancing workforce stability. While opening some units to the public, these initiatives primarily focus on providing housing for employees. This approach tackles housing shortages and aims to boost worker retention and recruitment.
Our survey revealed that 44% of respondents were open to living in communities predominantly composed of co-workers and managers, with more managers (47%) inclined to feel this way than employees (43%) and business owners (38%).
The positive effects of employer-based housing benefits likely extend beyond mere accommodation. Among those receiving these benefits, 77% reported job satisfaction, while just 60% of non-recipients felt the same.
Similarly, we observed a greater sense of mental well-being among recipients (75%) than non-recipients (59%). Housing benefits also seemed to translate into enhanced work productivity; recipients were 25% more likely to rate their overall work productivity as high.
In this final section, we shift our focus to employers, examining their plans and attitudes toward implementing housing benefits for their employees in the coming year.
Our findings indicate that a quarter of employers are considering introducing housing benefits in 2024. Among those planning to provide these benefits, the estimated average assistance amount was $6,201 per employee.
Certain sectors appeared more inclined toward this trend. In marketing, finance, and information technology, 53%, 41%, and 31% of employers are considering offering housing benefits. This inclination was more pronounced in small (32%) and medium-sized (31%) companies than large ones (25%).
Interestingly, employers also viewed housing benefits as a tool to potentially encourage employees to return to the office. About 1 in 6 said they plan to offer housing benefits in 2024 to facilitate the transition from remote to in-person work. Our insights also reveal how some employers are rethinking benefits and positioning housing support as a way to improve talent retention, productivity, and well-being.
The Future of Employee Benefits
The long-term effects of these housing benefits on both employees and employers remain to be seen, but they could reshape employee compensation. Our survey results show a significant interest in employer-based housing benefits, with some employees valuing this perk more than traditional benefits. Employers also see its potential to attract and keep workers. This trend could change how companies support their employees beyond the workplace.
For this campaign, we surveyed 710 employees and 310 employers to explore their perspectives on employer-based housing benefits.
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