Some companies, like Vodafone in Germany, give their employees the choice of whether they want to work at home or in the office.

How much is this changing office supplies?

Jan Hauser

Editor in business.

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The corona pandemic was a catalyst for the trend towards "New Work". On the one hand, it has been shown that most company processes can also be carried out from the home office. But it has also become clear that without the office, social exchange, networking and identification with the company are clearly neglected. Employee appreciation can also suffer when working remotely. For the office space requirement, this means: Modern office concepts that enable precisely this communication and are also health-promoting in the sense of “well-being” are in greater demand than ever. We conducted a survey of European companies to find out what this means for office space requirements: 60 percent saythat they see no need for change or need more space in the coming years. Ultimately, the space requirement remains stable.

Is the corona pandemic having less of an impact on the real estate market than expected?

Basically, we see that the corona shock was only temporary in many cases: cracking the 100 billion mark on the investment market is quite realistic for 2021. That would be an absolute record. In addition, many investors increased their real estate quotas during the pandemic. There are also clear signs of easing on the rental markets: With a take-up of space in the office segment of 1.75 million square meters, the same period last year was exceeded by more than 11 percent. But even in the retail segment, which has been more severely affected by the pandemic, it is evident that longer-term rental contracts are being concluded again. So normality is returning. Of course, there are also market segments that did not even have to recover. This is best shown in residential and logistics properties,whose importance for investors and users has even increased as a result of the pandemic.

After all, more home office means longer distances to the workplace are conceivable.

Is that why some people move to the cheap and green surrounding areas?

Absolutely.

In fact, there is a slight tendency to migrate from the city center to the suburbs.

The strong growth dynamics in the surrounding area of ​​many metropolises is also of an economic nature.

However, this does not mean that a general urban exodus has begun.

The prime locations of the metropolises are more attractive than ever for companies and residents, which is evident from the high demand, rising rents and low vacancy rates - both for office and residential properties.

While pure living and sleeping cities are becoming less and less attractive, mixed quarters offer precisely the urban points of contact and the social mix that only exists in this form in the big city.

The coalition negotiations are still ongoing. What do you expect from the new federal government, or can housing policy achieve little?

Regardless of all party political issues, constructive cooperation between the real estate industry and future decision-makers is important for the question of which cities we will be living in 15 or 20 years from now. When it comes to housing policy, international experience has shown that overly strict requirements are always associated with massive disadvantages: be it that too few and too expensive new buildings are built, or that the quality of the existing buildings is declining. It is better if the state provides the framework so that affordable housing can be created at all. In other words, identify building land, reduce ancillary acquisition costs, streamline construction requirements and promote the digitization of building authorities and changes to B-plan. But even then: Attractive cities with growing economies attract people,and in a functioning market economy that has an impact on rents and prices.

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