The scheme has partnered with Get Living to cover the deposit and two weeks of rent in a three-year tenancy agreement that staff can break after six months.
Golin's partnership to help staff find accommodation within the ultra-competitive and expensive Zone 2 part of London. It was first launched in 2017 for interns, who get their rent covered, and now covers all agency staff.
The affordability of accommodation in the Capital has become a major issue for businesses, with staff on lower salaries or from poorer socio-economic backgrounds often being priced out of accommodation within an hour’s travel of the City.
In London, rental costs have surged by 45 per cent between 2007 to 2017 and now average £1,609 a month, according to analysts Hometrack. Add to this rogue landlords, hidden fees, large deposits and the rental market is not just incredibly challenging to navigate, but also stressful.
Golin says the benefits of the scheme are to alleviate this stress and help the agency attract candidates from socially diverse backgrounds that may otherwise be priced out.
The intern-specific programme helped Golin increase internship applications by 15%, with 25% more candidates from beyond the M25 and 56% from non-Russell Group universities.
A positive response
Golin managing director Bibi Hilton told PRWeek the all-agency scheme, which was launched internally two weeks ago, has been well received.
"We’ve had really positive interest and a handful of people are looking at it, but will take some time as people’s rent comes up for review that they will be considering it," she said. "Around 40% of young people now feel they’ll never be able to afford a house. There’s not much we can do as a business to purchase property, but we are trying to ease some of the stress when it comes to renting."
Alongside two weeks rent, Get Living ask for no security deposit, which can easily add up to £2,500 of upfront costs per an inner-city London flat.
Employees can choose housing in East Village – the former Olympic Games Athletes’ Village near Stratford – and new apartments at Elephant Central in Elephant and Castle.
Christina Saxelby, an associate in Golin’s corporate team, is one of the first employees to sign up to the scheme. She lived and worked in Cheltenham, Gloucestershire before joining the agency.
"It had always been ‘the impossible dream’ to move to London, and when I was offered the job it was all a bit overwhelming as I didn’t have the finances or the contacts to relocate immediately," Saxelby said.
"The support I received through Golin B&B made the big move less stressful and more manageable, which meant I could focus on preparing for the new role rather than frantically finding accommodation."
Golin digital project manager Amrit Kaur is currently considering the scheme.
She said: "Having viewed my fair share of dodgy accommodation in London, it’s a relief to know that through Golin I have the option of a safe, modern and stress-free flat rental from a reliable landlord who has been pre-vetted by the agency. I’m also able to avoid having my hard earned savings tied up in a flat deposit."