A recent EY survey reveals a seismic shift in remote work trends, throwing the future of “Zoomtown” rentals into question.
Only 1% of executives now have fully remote teams, a stark contrast to the 34% reported in 2022.
Eighty percent of respondents not only encourage or require employees to be in the office three or more days per week but also express confidence in their hybrid work model, with an additional 18% currently fine-tuning theirs.
This trend could spark a reverse migration from "Zoomtowns", as employees who relocated to suburban and rural areas may return to cities due to office mandates. This would impact rental rates everywhere, increasing demand in commutable areas even as it falls in more remote regions.
Additionally, evolving work structures may influence renters’ amenity preferences. Hybrid employees, who may only use a dedicated home office one or two days a week, might not prioritize this feature as highly as before. With less demand for extra space, multifamily apartments could win out over single family rentals.
But while fully remote work is declining, more Americans still work from home now than pre-pandemic.
The rental market will continue to evolve to reflect the diverse preferences and work arrangements of the modern workforce.
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