Has COVID Affected Business Building Occupancy, Etc in TC?
The COVIC pandemic, like it or not, has resulted in changes for businesses, real estate and especially commercial buildings.
Even Rush Limbaugh a few weeks ago was commenting that in NYC, a lot of office buildings are now empty or nearly deserted from companies who realized all their people can work from other areas, and they don't need the infrastructure. Same for LA and others. But other companies do require in house people.
Locally, here's what the Tri City Area Journal of Business found.
"Office building sales were down 35% from where they were a year ago on a per-square-foot basis. Office leasing was down 30%. Retail building sales were down 90% and retail leasing by 42%."
These figures are year over through this September, dating back to Sept 2019. TCAJOB officials say some commercial brokers have sailed through the pandemic with little blip in activity, others have experienced a lot more instability. It just depends upon the business and potential risks to workers etc. as well as their needs.
There are even some businesses investing in remote controlled (digital app) thermostats, security entrance keys, touchless doors and temperature checks to convince workers it's safe to come back.
The TCAJOB reports office space is posing a big challenge for businesses, investors, builders and others involved because nobody knows when workers will return to buildings at 'normal' levels (like pre COVID) once things settle down. Another question is, will they?
While some companies require in person staffing, others are learning maybe they didn't need two offices, or that satellite office. We know of one company that is giving up the lease, or not going to renew it, for their office and all their workers will forge ahead from home--pandemic or not. They discovered they didn't 'need' the office. One of our adult children works for this firm, they're completely 'online remote' now.
Still other businesses are striking now to grab office space, especially areas where larger cubicles and offices can be had to allow more 'socially distanced' room between workers.
However, another consideration for companies is, what will the long-term effect of remote working from home have on employees? We are seeing and hearing growing numbers of stories and reports about how remote working it taking a toll on some people. Others love it, but many feel they need the 'separation' that working out of the house gives them.
It is believed this situation will not 'settle down' or resolve itself until the pandemic is considered over or completely 'under control.' To see the TCAJOB article and find out more about the journal, click on the button below.