Companies are struggling with a housing shortage in France and are struggling to attract employees. The government will try to find answers.
Housing is at the heart of Elisabeth Borne’s journey to Dunkirk. The prime minister visited the area of the future Verkor gigafactory, which will produce low-carbon batteries. Matignon promises new measures to revive housing production, linking the topic with the topic of employment. It has to be said that companies are finding it increasingly difficult to recruit these days because of this housing crisis. Many of them are developing their solutions to retain and attract employees.
Even large employers such as SNCF, RATP or AP-HP, which have their own housing stock, have difficulties. Others are starting to build their own property. Companies that go to mayors to set aside building lots for them to build enough to house their employees. For example, in Brittany, FenêtréA, a company specializing in joinery, has 560 employees. The boss wants to hire and train because he is about to open a new factory in Beignon, Morbihan. Faced with problems with housing for current and future employees, he purchased four plots of land for the construction of approximately forty houses intended primarily for the company’s employees.
Pay part of the monthly installments
At Pineau Fruit, an apple and pear producer in Maine et Loire, the boss begins investing in nearby farms and renovating them to house his seasonal workers. He also built prefabricated bungalows. In the same vein and with a sense of urgency, developer Réalités is developing an off-site modular construction project that would suit seasonal workers, students and young professionals. A construction method that allows a building to emerge from the ground in a matter of months.
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And then, in addition to the rental, some companies even help with access to the property. Fintech Iroko offers coverage of part of the monthly loan repayments of its employees. Increase during the contract period. If the employee leaves, the assistance stops. Housing is also an argument for retaining talent. According to Medef, 20% of companies that are unable to recruit workers see access to housing as a problem.
Among those whose voice is increasingly being heard by the government is the president of Action Logement, Bruno Arcadipane. Two of the government’s main goals cannot be achieved unless we restore housing production: full employment and reindustrialization.
Temporary rental housing
Hence this move to Dunkirk with the arrival of the Verkor gigafactory. It is a true symbol. Firstly, because it is the city of the Minister of Housing, Patrice Vergriete. He was the mayor. But also because with the establishment of new factories including Verkor, because there are others, more than 16,000 jobs will be created in the urban community of Dunkirk. It will still be necessary to be able to accommodate future employees and their families.
One way is transitional rental housing: LLI, otherwise called “Institutional Pinel”. In exchange for tax benefits, these institutions buy new housing, which they rent out at 10-15% below market rents. This is aimed at those who are ‘too rich’ to have social housing and not rich enough to be free market tenants or home owners. The problem today is that we don’t do enough, around 15,000 a year. Among the ways already contained in the 2024 finance law, open this “institutional Pinel” to old properties. About rehabilitation operations. Another lever in favor of students is to allow institutions to provide transitional housing in dedicated residences: shared housing, student residences, etc.
This LLI is only possible in so-called tense areas. And precisely to accelerate its development, the state recently modernized and moved about 150 cities to tension zones, including Dunkirk.