The office real estate market has faced mass uncertainty over the last few years and experts are predicting that 2022 will be no different.
However, one sector is feeling optimistic in the face of this unpredictability: flexible workspaces.
Operators like WeWork and others have cited seeing increased demand and growth over the past year as hybrid work becomes more popular.
“We’ve sold an office a day for the last six months, since June,” said Mike Kriel, CEO of Launch Workspaces. “We’ve had outrageous demand … three-quarters of this are folks who have never been in a flex environment before.”
Coworking has become the perfect solution during this turbulent period. Workplace operations have come to a steady halt, and although remote working has its own share of perks, some workers miss having a dedicated workspace outside of their homes.
Kriel added that other factors are driving this growth, such as the Great Resignation, businesses moving to a hub-and-spoke model, and large companies looking to incorporate smaller spaces to their network of offices.
According to CBRE’s 2022 U.S. Real Estate Market Outlook, flexible operators will have to remain agile in the new year in order to continue meeting this growing demand.
CBRE predicts that supply will grow this year, mainly from operators expanding their footprint and landlords incorporating their own flexible offerings.
“The future building in my mind, the ideal building, you have to have a marriage between flexible space and long-term leases in the same building,” said Kriel. “People just want to be seen and talked to. They don’t need the best gym or swimming pool or the best coffee in town, they just want to sit down … and have someone talk to you. It’s that simple.”