On September 30th, Florida’s minimum wage will increase from $10/hour to $11/hour. However, it is important to note that very few positions in the South Florida community association industry can be filled at $11 per hour. Convenience stores and fast-food restaurants in the area are offering $15 an hour as a starting pay rate. While $11 per hour will be the official minimum wage in less than a week, the reality is the entry level rate for most positions in our industry is much greater. This increase is just another factor that will impact inflation as wages continue to rise for most industries.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, wages in Florida have increased 8.7%, the third highest wage growth in the country. But this wage increase is not representative of what labor-intensive companies who service associations are seeing. Property management, landscaping and security/access control companies are dealing with greater wage increases as blue-collar labor is up significantly. Wages for blue-collar labor have increased from 11%-19% based on the industry. Security guards, for example went from making $12.50/hour a year ago to $15/hour now. Landscape labor has increased from $13/hour to $15/hour.
Labor costs began increasing during the great resignation where legions of workers, especially those in low-wage positions left their jobs forcing employers to pay more to get workers to show up.
It is important that your association recognize that security, management, and landscaping businesses are people businesses. If your association isn’t prepared to pay the going rate for labor costs, it is likely that your community will get a revolving door of employees and the worst employees.
The price of labor is one of many factors that will impact community associations and their budgets. Now is the time to start communicating increases to dues with your residents. Check out this blog post for tips on telling owners about the upcoming increases.
Throughout the remainder of 2022, we will have a blog post each month discussing this inflation storm and offer tips for your association to ride it out.