The traditional office will probably look very different in a post COVID-19 world. With so many people working remote, many companies are reevaluating their office space needs. While some business owners may want immediate tenant improvements to better optimize square footage; for example, to accommodate social distancing requirements to give employees more personal space, others might look to downsize if they let their employees continue to work from home. If you’re reassessing your office space requirements, here are a few things to keep in mind. Please Advise: We are a commercial construction company in Los Angeles – this post is for general informational purposes only and doesn’t substitute for the expertise of a tenant representative or commercial real estate attorney.

Assess How Your Current Space Fits Post COVID-19 Needs

If you’re currently occupying a space, how do you see your needs changing in the aftermath of COVID-19? Can a number of your employees continue to work from home? If so, perhaps you won’t need as much square footage when your existing lease ends. Even with remote workers, you might still require space for weekly staff meetings or to host potential clients. This is the time to figure out how your team functions when not working in-house. How well have they maintained motivation, productivity, or communication? Every business is experiencing something different managing remote teams right now.

Will COVID-19 Safety Guidelines Require Tenant Improvement Construction?

It’s possible that we may all need to adhere to COVID-19 safety precautions for many more months, if not years. This pandemic could very well bring long-lasting and widespread changes to office culture or trends. Those trendy open and collaborative workspaces of the past 5 to 10 years could become a thing of the past if social distancing continues. Those clear plastic shields surrounding grocery store cashiers could become necessary at any office servicing the general public.

Remember, It’ll Be a Tenant’s Market

Commercial landlords are nervous that their current tenants will permanently go out of business or drastically downsize leaving them with vacancies. These vacancies will make it a tenant’s market for anyone on the hunt for a new space or looking to negotiate a new lease or renew a current one.

Truth be told, none of us can predict what the remainder of the year will bring. This means there’s also no way to predict what a post-COVID-19 workplace will resemble. All we can do right now is hope to get through this unprecedented time healthy and well with our businesses or financials intact. While we don’t have much control over COVID-19, we can learn from this experience. And use those lessons to take control of our long-term interests and better protect our businesses moving forward.


H.W. Holmes, Inc. is a commercial construction company specializing in new ground up construction and tenant improvements in Los Angeles, Ventura, and Santa Barbara counties. If you’d like to discuss your project and get a free estimate from our professionals, contact us today.