From warehouses to office space, real-estate markets are being turned upside down — and these are the winners and losers

The way we occupy space and our relationship with places like stores and offices is transforming.

The way we occupy space and our relationship with places like stores and offices is transforming.
Katie Warren/Business Insider
  • Offices, hotels, and malls have been emptied by the coronavirus, which could lead long-term disruption in our day-to-day lives.
  • The coronavirus has provided the largest experiment ever in remote work. Experts say it will forever change our relationship with the physical office.
  • Flex-space providers like WeWork, Knotel, and Convene, rental startups like Sonder and Zeus Living, iBuyer Opendoor, and brokerages including Compass and Redfin have laid off or furloughed staff.
  • Companies are also rethinking their office footprints and warehouse needs.
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The coronavirus has thrown the real-estate world into disarray, as people empty out of offices, hotels, and malls and work from their homes. The spread of the virus and the economic disruptions that have followed are transforming how people and companies finance, operate, and occupy real estate.

Big firms are rethinking office needs – and some commercial real-estate deals are being put on ice. A surge in e-commerce, meanwhile, is fueling demand for warehouse space at companies look for new ways to reach customers.

We’ve also been tracking a slew of layoffs in the venture-backed real estate world, as empty short-term rentals and coworking spaces have hit once-buzzy industries hard.

Here’s the latest news on how commercial and residential real estate is being upended, and how experts think these markets will play out in the long run.

Have a tip about layoffs or major changes in this space? Contact this reporter through the secure messaging app Signal at +1 (646) 768-4772 using a non-work phone, email at, or Twitter DM at @AlexONicoll. You can also contact Business Insider securely via SecureDrop.

Here’s everything we know right now:

Latest news

State of the commercial real estate market

Layoffs, pay cuts, and furloughs

The future of real estate