(Bloomberg) -- Almost one in 10 German companies plans to reduce office space in response to remote working habits, adding pressure to a commercial real estate market already creaking from higher interest rates and construction costs.
While most companies don’t wish to downsize, more than 9% do, a survey by the Munich-based Ifo institute on Wednesday showed.
In some industries like automotive and broadcasting, the percentage was as high as 40%, while in sectors such as trade and construction, fewer than 4% disclosed plans to cut back. By contrast, only 1% of companies plan to increase their office space.
With one in four employees working from home on a permanent basis, the trend to downsize may intensify in upcoming years, when long-term office leases expire and firms reevaluate their need for work spaces, Ifo economist Simon Krause said.
“This development will exacerbate the crisis in the real estate market,” Krause said.
Read More: European Real Estate Faces New Pressure as Property Funds Wobble
A massive increase of financing costs and waning demand has already put German commercial real estate markets under pressure. At around €16 billion ($16.8 billion), investment in commercial property in the three months through September was 63% lower than the previous year, an analysis by BNP Real Estate on Wednesday showed.
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