Analysts are still uncertain about when people will return to the office, how much office space will be necessary in the future and what these spaces will even look like.
One thing that is clear is 2021 will be a time of trying to rebuild losses experienced during the past year.
According to Kevin Thorpe, chief economist at Cushman & Wakefield, companies are mostly in wait-and-see mode until the state of the office industry is less murky. With remote working on the uprise, companies are trying to navigate what their next big move will be.
However, despite some reports stating that people are leaving metropolitan areas for suburbs due to remote working arrangements, Thorpe believes that businesses most likely will stay in CBDs.
A report from Green Street found that job growth is slipping while real estate interest is growing, which could mean challenges are ahead for the office industry.
Fortunately for the office market, Thorpe added that he believes the worst of the pandemic is behind us and that the industry can begin to rebound.
This will still take time. Rents are still expected to decline in 2021, but Cushman & Wakefield anticipates that rents will bottom in the first half of 2022.