Editorial

Real estate post-covid trends: the point of view of investors

By 16 June 2020 No Comments

Italy has resumed its operativity. Sectors are starting off producing, constructing, providing services with new procedures and a new energy. In this period of restarts, still rife with variables, setting an action plan is as difficult as necessary. That is the reason why real estate operators have started taking action to foresee the post-covid sector scenario.

This is what has been discussed during the webinar “Real Estate: which are the trends after covid-19? The point of view of investors”, organized by Finance Community, which has involved the most relevant investors on the national territory.

It’s been quite interesting to notice that, amongst the many views that have been described during the meeting, the majority of investors seems to agree on some particular assessments.

In the first place, it seems widely agreed that covid-19 hasn’t overturned market trends, but instead it has accelerated inclinations that were already in place. For example, there was a boom in logistics (which already was already growing) and further damages to an already struggling retail segment.

At the same time, remote working was already being applied by major multinational and in all likelihood it would have spread bringing consequences on the office segment. Apartment rental was already a trend and will now probably be the first tourism real estate asset to recover.

Secondly, existing assets are likely to be reinvented in order to adapt them to the new needs emerged during the lockdown. When it comes to the residential segment, it’ll be more likely to see a raise of demand for apartment buildings with green or wide spaces rather than a mass moving to the countryside areas.

At the same time, even though remote working was an essential emergency resource, the latest studies have shown how people need to alternate office and remote working because technology is not completely able to replace physical interactions between colleagues. Predictably, there’ll be a reduction of the traditional desk surface, but no substantial change is foreseen.

Lastly, the majority of investors has shown a cautious but generic optimism about the future of the sector. This crisis is not systemic, but is due to a factor which, with the hope of a vaccine, will end. For this reason investors remain optimistic about the tourist sector too: it will surely struggle this year, but it’ll restart functioning with a cure.

So when we imagine the future of real estate we must not think about going back to a pre-covid scenario, neither to a total overturn of the previous outline, but rather to an evolution which includes what we have learned, especially by keeping in mind what we don’t want to step backwards on.