Published on June 25, 2013

Short-term, temporary housing provisions should be a component in your employee relocation program. In some cases, your transferees may not need to activate this feature. However, when it is needed, short-term housing becomes a treasured feature for which your transferees will appreciate.

From an employer perspective, temporary housing benefits often result into high performing transferees at their new location. As a creative solution to a troubling problem, short-term housing is also cost effective for you and your transferees.

Transferee Benefits

  • Bridges the gap for employees unable to sell their current home before relocating.
  • Accelerates employee comfortability at the new workplace.
  • Removes a major concern--uncertainty--from stress levels.

Employer Benefits

  • Improves employee acceptance of company-requested relocation.
  • Increases competitive advantages when attracting new and/or retaining talented employees.
  • Offers effective cost control in two ways:
    • Activated only if needed, not required for every situation
    • Easy benefit to cap maximum reimbursement and time limit, e.g., up to six months of temporary housing.
  • "Temporary" and "Short-term." No long-term costly housing financial obligation.

When to Offer the Benefit

 Employers can stipulate the conditions under which short-term housing features are provided. In designing your corporate relocation policy, you can balance the cost versus the liberality of offering this feature to all transferees. Restricting this benefit solely to executives above a certain level can become counterproductive to retaining talented non-executive employees.

Short-term housing features leap to the forefront of importance when transferees face the following conditions:

  • Employee has a home on the market with by the transfer date.
  • Employee has an offer on current residence, but closing is not complete by the transfer date.
  • Transferee has purchased but not yet closed on the new property.
  • Transferee has closed on a new home but it is not ready for occupancy.
  • Employee has a family, which translates to inconvenience and extra employer cost of reimbursing for an acceptable hotel room(s) for more than a few days.

Important and Cost Effective Solution

Offering temporary housing solutions create a win-win result for both employers and transferees. Employee advantages include:

  • Having a 'home away from home' is more comfortable than being confined to a hotel room.
  • Eliminates transferee concerns for living options prior to finalizing the relocation.

Employer benefits include the following:

  • The performance curve compresses, allowing the employee to be immediately productive at the new location.
  • Eliminates employer uncertainty regarding when the transferee arrives at the new workplace.
  • Cost effective resolution to an otherwise major road block to employee relocation, as employer can negotiate a budget-friendly arrangement for short-term housing.

Having short-term housing features in your relocation policy generates the perception that your organization is professional and caring when dealing with new hires and valuable current employees.


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Arranging for a clean, contemporary furnished apartment, condo or home for temporary housing generates happy, productive transferees. Your ability to manage the cost of this benefit is another significant plus. When you hope to attract or retain the best talent available, offering temporary housing solutions, when needed, identifies your company as an upper echelon employer in your competition for the most qualified employees you crave.