As vaccine rollouts continue and city and state economies reopen, the office sector is poised for an increasingly widespread return-to-work movement. However, “return to work” doesn’t mean a return to pre-pandemic business as usual.
For both landlords and tenants, the remote work environment of the pandemic raised new questions about space utilization. Against this backdrop, independent market intelligence firm Verdantix conducted research into landlord and tenant real estate strategies, post-pandemic.
The Verdantix team spoke with global landlords representing a combined portfolio of 2.5 billion square feet and enterprise occupiers to better understand the drivers of demand for flex space and the business benefits of occupying such space. The research, commissioned by essensys, the leading global provider of software-as-a-service and technology to the flexible workspace industry, has implications for both occupiers and landlords.
Connect Commercial Real Estate spoke with Chris James, SVP of business development at essensys, on the implications for occupiers:
Q: When people see the term “flex space,” they may have different perceptions of what it means. How do you define the term?
A: Flex is not just associated with lease term, and I think that’s a misconception among a lot of landlords. They hear the term “flex,” and they cringe, because they’re thinking “short-term leases, high turnover; what does that look like for my building?” and it becomes a scary thing for them. But flex is so much bigger than the term of the offering. What we saw, especially pre-pandemic, was that while tenants were willing to sign, when they looked at flex they were looking more at the services associated with the space, and asking what were they getting that historically they would have had to deal with on their own.
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