The government’s plans to prevent non-UK citizens taking up roles paying less than £25,600 a year is likely to have significant repercussions for ‘white collar’ jobs including the property industry, it has been claimed.
Jobsite Indeed has published figures which reveal that approximately 25% of all white collar roles in the UK are from non-UK applicants, a figure which is much higher for roles in tech.
The prediction comes as the government unveils its plans for a points-based immigration system, ending free movement for EU citizens into the UK to work.
The research shows that, although many foreign applicants for jobs are looking for roles that pay more than the £25,600 cut off, which was recently reduced from £30,000, some 12% of applicants are for roles under £25,600.
This means that after the new rules are implemented post-Brexit, many estate agencies and proptech firms will have to work harder to find UK-resident or citizen candidates from an already narrow pool.
A spokesperson for Indeed said the average salary for an estate agent is £28,446, some way above the cut-off salary, but that many junior and first-jobber roles pay considerably less.
For example, on average salary for a sales or lettings negotiator is £21,740 based on its research among 17,800 job adverts and existing job holders. Other roles pay much less on average including office administrator (£18,607), lettings assistant (£20,25), property administrator (£20,340), property assistant (£19,458) and client advisor (£16,500).
Latest figures show that 7.5% of all workers in the UK were born in an EU country (or 2.3 million), including both employees and self-employed workers. The number of EU citizens who are issued National Insurance numbers each year has dropped from 660,000 at the time of the EU Referendum to 418,000 during 2018.
The Negotiator contacted Propertymark to ask its view on the proposed changes to the way agents can recruit non-UK citizens, but its spokesperson said neither ARLA nor NAEA felt it was a subject they could comment on.