Magazine article American Banker

Worker Relocation Business Seen Moving into Fast Lane

Magazine article American Banker

Worker Relocation Business Seen Moving into Fast Lane

Article excerpt

Employee-relocation companies and the mortgage companies they work with are enjoying brisk business despite the downsizing of corporate America.

And in fact, some of the extra volume may be because of past downsizing in which companies shed their own relocation staffs, so now they must turn to outsourcing the services.

Coldwell Banker Relocation Services Inc. says the worst of the downsizing is over. It expects to handle more than 40,000 domestic transferees in 1996, 20% more than last year, said Stephen Roney, president and chief executive. And a survey by a moving-van company found that corporations expect to increase their relocations over the next five years.

Last year, Coldwell joined Bank of America's mortgage division to offer housing finance assistance in all 50 states to employees who must move.

For its clientele - mainly Fortune 50 companies - the Coldwell-Bank of America alliance funnels reimbursement money to employees, provides advance counseling, and helps them sell their old homes. When the employees move, Bank of America helps them secure new mortgages through a pool of lenders including itself.

A link with a corporate relocation specialist can provide lenders with a source of large high-quality loans.

"This is a different business from normal retail mortgage," said Mr. Roney. "You've got a more qualified borrower, with a higher credit profile, who is buying a home above the median."

Mortgage companies not already affiliated with corporate relocation programs may want to set up such partnerships, according to a study released by Atlas Van Lines, Evansville, Ind. …

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