The abrupt shift to remote working due to the pandemic revealed that most office workers managed their jobs well while working from home. This has prompted some corporate leaders to re-evaluate the use of traditional office space and rethink their business needs moving forward. While many understand that the future of commercial office space will have permanent adaptations due to COVID-19, top business professionals are predicting that commercial office space in Arizona will continue to see steady growth.
What industry leaders are saying
According to Terry Martin-Denning, CEO and designated broker of NAI Horizon Phoenix, as companies review their office workforce models, there will be extra considerations in the office space requirement such as square footage and cubicle layouts that adheres to the well-being of the employees within the office. While the commercial office space market in Arizona is moving slowly, asking rates have not yet shown a decline. Martin-Denning claims, “I believe the Phoenix office market will be resilient.”
Cathay Teeter, managing director of the Phoenix office for CBRE, also agreed the commercial office space market in Arizona is not going anywhere. Despite the changes happening in the world, “…there has been a huge uptick in activity in inquiries, and companies are going to continue to look at Arizona,” Teeter says.
Molly Ryan Caarson, CEO of Ryan Companies US, Inc. in Arizona, also said she is seeing clients talk about expanding their office space to accommodate social-distancing, not eliminating it with more employees working remotely.
While the adjustment to working from home has shown large companies the capabilities of employees working remotely, many still see the office setting being an essential function for large case work that requires a collaborative effort. Anything that requires a “wet” signature such as real estate, trusts, estates and wills, etc. will require office presence to be the most efficient in terms of productivity. Additionally, new product training, budget preparation and planning, activities involving new clients, complex transactions that require multiple signatures, and onboarding new talent are still aspects of work where the office space is a more efficient tool for productivity.
In addition to industry professionals indicating that the future of commercial office spaces will remain intact in Arizona, all agree that ensuring employee health and safety will remain a top priority. Until there is more clarity with the ongoing pandemic, companies will continue to seek creative ways for employees to safely have in-person interactions combined with online collaboration to maximum efficiency both in and out of the office.
At Landmark Title we are continuing to operate and keep our offices open with 65% of our team working remotely. Since March, we have even added new office space to accommodate growth. We have also put new practices in place to help ensure the safety and health of our employees and clients.
Our in-office staff regularly sanitizes office surfaces and maintains social distancing. We are also using Remote Online Notarization (RON) so clients can get documents safely notarized anytime, anywhere.
If you have a residential or commercial real estate transaction and need escrow or title services, we are available to answer your questions.