Saturday, December 19, 2020

Today's crumb comes from Ireland

Pat and Tony Walsh of County Kerry, Ireland, own a business called Walsh Color Print. They employ nearly 120 people, but because the work requires specialized skills, a good part of their workforce comes from other countries. Since housing options are limited and costly in the area, many employees can't afford to save for a home while paying high rent. So, in 2017, the couple obtained permission to build not-for-profit homes on land the firm already owns. The sit can accommodate 70 units, 20 of which are earmarked for company workers.

The 1,000 square foot attached homes for employees are sold well below market value. To offset costs, the other 50 units are sold at full value on the open market. There's an informal agreement that employees who buy the homes will stay with the firm for ten years, and while this guarantees a steady workforce, Tony Walsh also believes home ownership will be a key factor in securing a stable future for his employees when they retire.