Similar to the past two years, around eight out of ten firms reimburse or pay a portion of relocation costs for transferees or new hires. Over the previous ten years, nine out of ten firms typically covered some costs. This change reflects a continuing preference among small firms to either not cover costs or to offer lump sums instead. Although large and mid-size firms appear far less affected, the shift away from covering costs for specific items is stronger this year than in the past two. Items once covered as “standard,” regardless of employee status, may no longer be guaranteed as firms flex to stay within budgets.
Most firms continue to offer specialized relocation assistance for homeowners; however, small firms remain less likely than mid-size or large firms to do so. The percentage of firms that offer this assistance remains similar to the past two years and slightly lower overall compared to 2007-2012. Although the percentage of small firms offering assistance has increased slightly, those which do not offer it or offer lump sums instead are primarily responsible for the downward shift. The percentages of large and mid-size firms offering this assistance also trend lower than historical highs.
Most firms continue to offer specialized assistance for renters; small firms remain least likely. Similar to the past two years, the percentage of firms doing so is lower than during the previous decade. This shift is largely driven by small firms offering assistance or, alternatively, lump sums, although the percentages of large and mid-size firms offering assistance trend lower than historical highs as well.
Overall, while homeowner-assistance levels have fallen substantially, especially for the top five items, renter assistance has been slightly less affected. While it has fallen markedly from last year for temporary housing allowances (44% vs. 57%) and home finding trips (36% vs. 46%), it remains far more stable for lease cancellation reimbursement (50% vs. 54%), storage (37% vs. 38%), and apartment search/finder’s fees (30% vs. 27%).