Coronavirus is going to create new real estate winners

Credit for Article Writer Conor Sen
May 14, 2020

The coronavirus is going to change the way we work whether we like it or not — at least for the short term and maybe longer. To take just one example: Twitter said it would let employees work from home even after the Covid-19 crisis has passed. Although it’s too early to say how much of a lasting change in work culture we’ll get, even a temporary shift such as this should be great news for residential real estate in at least two types of communities: the exurbs of high-cost coastal cities and second-tier cities with similar amenities but more limited job markets than their larger coastal peers.

Coronavirus is going to create new real estate winners

A shift to work from home helps to lift the constraint of physical proximity for workers with certain kinds of jobs, allowing them to consider a wider range of places to live than when they had to be in the office five days a week. This has benefits both at the individual and the collective level. In a region such as the San Francisco Bay Area, with lots of tech jobs but expensive and limited housing, the average commute time is 32 minutes. If a person there worked from home one day a week, that’s an hour a week not spent commuting. If these practices are adopted by most white-collar employers, that would take a lot of vehicles off the road during peak commuting times, reducing congestion and shortening drive times for everyone else.


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