May 11, 2020

Moving to the New Normal


In these unprecedented times, there is not a business that hasn’t been affected in some way. Many companies have had to close their doors temporarily. Others have learned that it is possible to operate their business with all staff working from home. While we are not through these challenging times, there are signs that states may begin to open back up little by little in the coming month, but what will become or new standards for commercial properties.


At RakowGroup, we work with businesses of all sizes and industries from the medical to the hospitality industry. We believe every industry will see significant changes in their work environments. What will the new cleaning standards be for building owners and tenants? Will businesses have to invest in more frequent deep cleanings or possibly begin using more hi-tech cleaning techniques to sanitize offices? How will technology play into possible new mandates? Will touchless offices be needed where there are motion sensors to open doors and facial recognition to operate elevators. Think about air quality. Many buildings have recirculated air. Will landlords be expected to have better air handling systems in their buildings?


Will some offices – or even industrial settings – need to rearrange floor plans to accommodate more distance between employees? Many have moved to open floor plans in the past years. Will there now be a trend back to a closed plan to put more distance between staff members. Will businesses look to move buildings or want to renegotiate leases based on mandates in our new normal. Will tenants now look for shorter leases?


What will restaurants do? Will they want to find locations with more space to add distance between tables. What will be their new standard for cleanliness? Customers will have much higher expectations. Today, many are surviving the pandemic with takeout business. Will they now need to maintain that to make up for a possible reduction in the number of customers they can sit at one time? How will spaces need to be changed to accommodate those needs?


It’s going to be interesting in the coming months to see how the commercial real estate and other industries adjust to a post-COVID-19 world and our new normal.


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