COVID-19 IMPACT ON OFFICE MARKET
As New Jersey slowly emerges from quarantine, corporations have been tasked with determining how to best re-enter their offices. Companies are taking a thoughtful and prolonged approach as they prepare to re-enter the workplace, with the main goal of keeping their employees safe. Office life will not be the same as we knew before the pandemic. Businesses will likely take a phased approach in order to maintain a safe distance between employees. In the second quarter, COVID-19 had the largest impact on office leasing activity. Renewals accounted for most of the demand this quarter, as new lease negotiations and tours were disrupted by the pandemic. We are still early in the cycle to see any noticeable changes to the asking rent or newly available sublease space. The full ramifications of COVID-19 are not yet known as the situation remains fluid, and forecasts are continuously adjusting. It is unclear how long the spread of COVID-19 will last, but the longer its time frame extends, the higher a priority it becomes for businesses to mitigate economic impact.