What If Employers Helped With Consumer Debt?

“You’ve done a great job this year.  Your performance is above expectations.  You’ve achieved all of your goals and have advanced your career path.  We see more growth for you in the future.  We want to recognize your accomplishments and feel that a fair representation would be….”

You lean in on the edge of your seat waiting for the next sentence.  5%?  10%?  How much more will you be making.

“no salary increase.”

Huh?  Bummer.  Well, there must be a fat bonus coming?

“Also, as you know, it is our policy not to pay one time bonuses.”

Now you’re really getting angry.  How could loyalty and performance be rewarded with another goose egg?

“This year, we’re going to do something different.  We’re going to apply $5,000 toward outstanding debt and we will arrange to pay the lender directly.”

Hmmm….let me think about this.

What would your thoughts be in such an arrangement?  What if companies started actively taking part in reducing consumer debt?

Consumer debt was defined as one of the crippling reasons for the recession, and though it’s gone down, the current levels are still one of the first things people discuss when talking about why the current economic recovery is so slow.

Logistics aside (I’m sure companies wouldn’t want to be writing separate checks to many different lenders, but let’s pretend for a minute that this isn’t an issue), I wonder what this would do.  Would employees be happy with this?  What percentage would resist the temptation to go out and add the debt back with a new purchase?

Would this really help the economy?

What do you think of this idea?  Would there be any company in the world that would bother with such an endeavor?  What would the pitfalls be?

6 thoughts on “What If Employers Helped With Consumer Debt?”

  1. That would make me so angry with my employer if they did that. What am I supposed to do as someone who has no debt? Run up a balance just to get the $5000 of benefit?

    I think this would be an inappropriate role for an employer to take in their employees live.

  2. I would not like it, since my only debt is my mortgage. If they want to pay that to my mortgage, it would be okay. I don't like the concept of companies becoming my parent or making decisions for me. I think it would probably be a liability for the company and a privacy issue for me.
    I would be very opposed to this in general.

  3. This would likely cause people to incur more consumer debt rather than reduce it. Since I don't have any consumer debt I'd fell ripped off when my coworkers got a bonus and I didn't.

  4. Interesting thought I have not had before.

    I hope they would pay it down on our mortgage as that is the only debt we carry. If so…I'd take it!

  5. If they are going to add it to my mortgage… I'd be okay with that if it was that or nothing at all…

    but id be worried if people wouldn't go more into debt to "feel" like they were getting the bonus…

    Can they max out a roth for me?

  6. Thanks for the comments. I would guess/hope that if you had no debt, then your employer would give you a bonus. It certainly would cause a huge amount of resentment if those with debt got extra rewards. Either way, it is purely hypothetical as most employers can't seem to be bothered with handing out raises these days, let alone creative ways to give bonuses!

Comments are closed.