Over the past three years, it’s the question that I’m asked most frequently and often with an increasingly curious, if slightly sympathetic, tone.
And for good reason.
For those reading the newspapers and following the seesawing news about office space trends, remote work, building loan defaults, and the ever changing return-to-office policies, the obvious and unequivocal conclusion would be that the demand for office space has flatlined across the board.
While there are indisputable concerns regarding the purpose, relevance and financing of office space, there are still pockets of demand showing strong signs of life that go largely unreported.
Fortunately, and with G-d’s help, we’ve witnessed this demand in our business. Starting in the second half of 2021 and continuing until to today, we have recorded a progressively increased number of transactions, quarter over quarter and year over year.
Reporting on the small-medium sized business market doesn’t sell papers, but the volume of their collective space decisions at the bottom of the triangle tells an important story; according to a study by The Partnership for New York City, 90% of the city’s small businesses have fewer than 20 employees.
While this core market of SMB companies that we serve are surely impacted by market changes, their conviction surrounding both the necessity of an office and the vitality of Midtown has not wavered. These groups truly represent the engine that drives the diverse and dynamic economy of Midtown Manhattan (and the American economy overall). With their niches and nimbilite, these organizations deal far better with uncertainty than the colossal giants paralyzed by indecisiveness when making long term real estate decisions.
So, while there is certainly more vacant space than there was before Covid, we have seen an abundance of activity (at very favorable economics) from this silent majority of tenants, looking to secure their futures in Midtown with lease renewals, expansions, right-sizes, and relocations.
Questions? Curious? Care to discuss more?
Reach out anytime!
Until next month,
Principal Broker | Noah & Co.
P.S. Some real-time thoughts from real-time conversations
- Why flight to quality doesn't always mean new construction
- 5 things you're missing when negotiating directly with your Landlord
- The many benefits of Midtown specialization
For the rest of our April 2023 Newsletter, click here.