The impact of the Great Recession and housing crisis is fading. As a reason for declining relocation, housing/mortgage concerns has lessened in each of the last three years; it now falls just within pre-recession levels for the first time since 2006. Only small firms indicate its influence exceeds pre-recessionary numbers, although well below recessionary highs. For the third straight year, family issues/ties retains the top spot among firms of all sizes. Spouse/partner employment appears in second place for the third year in a row as well—and remains near the highest levels recorded since the turn of the century. Understandably, families that came through the Great Recession may be reluctant to gamble financial security on single salaries, placing a higher priority on keeping a dual-income household. The impact of this factor fell to a low of 39% in 2011, likely due to the difficulty of obtaining employment. Four years later, it retains a sixteen percent gain (55%).
More than half of firms saw employees decline relocation last year, which is not unexpected. However, while employee reluctance (22%) falls slightly below the peaks of 2008 (28%) and 2009 (29%) and its jump in 2014 (28%), it remains above post-recession levels (11%-18%) of recent years. This suggests that spouse/partner employment may be continuing to put more pressure on firms trying to motivate employees to relocate. However, while firms are seeing reluctance at higher levels, a bit more also report decreases in reluctance over the past two years, although at lower levels than those seeing increased reluctance.