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7 Amazing Trends That Are Reshaping Commercial Real Estate

By Eric Jeanette | September 22, 2020

Commercial real estate architecture is changing every year and each year with new materials, layouts, designs and market demands that dictate how the world of real estate develops. If you're planning to hire a commercial contractor to build and invest in commercial real estate or just want to be in the know when it comes to new architecture movements, here are the top trends you need to know about that will leave a huge mark on commercial real estate.

Sustainability efforts

Corporate sustainability has been going strong for quite some time and it’s still trending in 2020. A record number of companies are giving their maximum efforts to boost sustainability and accelerate their commitment to climate actions.

Renewable energy in the business community is hitting its record high making big steps towards more responsible operations. Even though these sustainability efforts present a big challenge for the commercial real estate industry, they are also a great opportunity to do something good for mankind.

Better workplace experience

Companies of all sizes are doing their best to attract and retain quality workforce, so the competition between businesses is booming. One way to become an employer everyone wants to work for is to provide talent with an office space that will encourage their growth, collaboration and work/life balance. Today, we are living in an employees’ world, so all workspaces need to be adapted to their needs.

Think amenity-rich environments, smart tech and a good sense of community can help employees feel welcome and cherished. Additionally, changing demographics of the workplace also demands flexibility. Since Baby Boomers are retiring later than ever, employees can be faced with up to five generations working together in one space which requires some smart design solutions.

Coworking vs. traditional offices

It’s not a secret that traditional offices are losing momentum while coworking spaces grow more popular every day. This shift resulted in a decline in small office space demand which is a great challenge for traditional asset owners. However, if we take the direct-to-owner small lease market and give it a modern face-lift, this move can slow down the decline of small office spaces and help investors get back on their feet.

Better lighting

Since workspaces concentrate more and more on the wellbeing of workers and comfort of clients, lighting is changing rapidly, too. For instance, some luminaires and other commercial lighting solutions can be hooked up to occupancy sensors, contain remote controls and even provide wireless communication. You can hire a commercial electrician to install the lighting fixtures best suited to your commercial space.

LED solutions are still going strong as well. For instance, practical BUCK LED industrial applications are numerous, from low height industrial spaces to gas stations and warehouses, which makes it suitable for many spaces and various uses. Some of their models allow management with analog dimming which can further improve comfort.

Higher demand for cold storage

E-commerce and online grocery and drink stores are blooming, so these retailers require more and more space for distribution with an emphasis on cold storage solutions which can boost their delivery to the customers.

Developers are looking for large warehouse facilities and land that’s close to highways and ports (especially in fresh markets) so large fulfillment centers equipped with enhanced cold storage solutions are increasingly breaking ground.

Organic spaces

People are becoming more and more aware of just how important it is to have nature in one’s life, so working surrounded by greenery and organic things is getting increasingly popular. Organic spaces also help with stress management, anxiety relief and creativity and productivity increase, so it is not a surprise many commercial buildings do their maximum to green up their quarters and offices.

There are many ways of incorporating biophilia into modern commercial spaces, but larger windows for more natural light, indoor plants and water features, and natural colors are just some of the most popular, effective and cost-friendly solutions.

Smaller parking lots

Since companies are trying to improve their sustainability, many of them are encouraging the use of electric scooters and bicycles as well as telecommuting. This means fewer employees coming to work by car (and a smaller number of employees in the building in general) so developers can reduce parking lot space.

Another phenomenon that can affect parking lots is autonomous cars. These vehicles can drop off employees and visitors at the entrance and go off to park themselves in designated lots. Since drivers don’t need to enter and exit the vehicle at the parking lot (usually requires 4 inches of space on either side), self-driving cars provide precious extra space that can be used for recreational activities, greenery or other worker amenities. 

Smart buildings

The Internet of Things is becoming more and more important when it comes to tenant/worker experience, so developers are expecting that smart buildings that enable Iot will greatly affect real estate leasing and buying decisions. Experts expect that smart tech will be more influential than the location when it comes to buying/leasing decisions and that people will be willing to pay a good premium for these commodities.

These trends are likely to flourish in the upcoming years, but since the commercial real estate market is always changing, it will be interesting to see which trends are here to stay and which will develop further to better fit the needs of customers.

About the author – Eric Jeanette started as a Realtor in 1993 and eventually transitioned to lending. His companies Dream Home Financing and FHA Lenders provide mortgage information and education to consumers. They also provide those same consumers with a free lender match service through a network of lenders for conventional, FHA/government, subprime, self-employed and many other niche loan programs.
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