Remote-friendly cities are seeing a slower rate of office market recovery than cities that offer fewer remote positions.
According to the VTS Office Demand Index, among the top cities with the highest number of remote jobs were Seattle, Boston and San Francisco, which saw their levels of office demand drop 39%, 42% and 46% from their 2018 to 2019 average.
Those with fewer remote-friendly jobs such as Chicago, New York and Los Angeles saw their numbers down 14%, 15% and 24% from their pre-pandemic levels.
However, Washington D.C. remained an outlier, having a decent amount of remote jobs and a higher recovery rate.
Although office space demand had increased by 173% in the first four months of 2021, it dipped by 8.5% from April to May. Still, demand remains five times higher than its low in May 2020.
“The pandemic didn’t just change the way we work, it changed the way we live. Many workers have found value in remote or hybrid work and may be reluctant to go back to the way life was pre-pandemic,” said Nick Romito, CEO of VTS. “In cities with higher rates of fully-remote jobs, hiring and retaining talent means employers will need to provide choices and flexibility – including fully-remote and fully in-office.”