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Covid effect: 73% will downsize office

23 August 2020

The Covid-19 pandemic will lead to more businesses downsizing their office space over the coming year, new research has shown.

According to a survey carried out by Accumulate Capital, nearly three quarters (73%) of senior decision-makers believe Covid-19 will result in more UK businesses moving to smaller offices in the coming 12 months, while over a third (37%) plan to relocate to a smaller space themselves.

Half of those surveyed (50%) said their preference for commercial space has changed significantly following the recent widespread adoption of homeworking. Going forward, 58% of businesses believe working from home will become the norm, while 45% do not expect their employees to all be working in the office at the same time.

However, a physical office will still have a role to play, with 57% of businesses expecting to use that space to network and collaborate with partners and prospective clients, the research showed.

Paul Howells, CEO, Accumulate Capital, said: “Today’s research demonstrates just how Covid-19 is affecting both the UK’s businesses and its commercial real estate market. As a result of the pandemic, businesses clearly no longer look at offices and commercial property in the same way, which will have significant implications for property developers and commercial landlords.”

Howells added: “The increase in remote working will likely see businesses look to smaller, more flexible workspaces. The days when a company would own or rent an office with a desk in it for each and every member of staff are coming to an end – in reality, this trend was already taking shape but the Coronavirus crisis has greatly accelerated it.”

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