Office contracting fell by 23% yoy in Madrid during the first quarter of the year, reaching 82.500 sqm compared to 108.000 sqm in the same period of 2020. In Barcelona, however, the volume grew by 55%. In this way, contracting stood above 70.000 sqm, a figure higher than 45.000 sqm in the same interval last year.
These data are derived from the forecasts made by CBRE. «Despite the challenge of controlling the pandemic and the slow progress of vaccinations, our estimates of hiring office space allow us to be moderately optimistic at the start of the year. We continue to see some companies that choose, if their current contract ends, to extend its duration for one or two more years in the hope of having more visibility on their real future space needs», explains Lola Martínez Brioso, director of Research at CBRE Spain.
CBRE also points to the recovery of the activity with a planned return to the offices after the summer. «Companies are looking for ways to adapt their offices to a more flexible model (combining work in the office and outside it), analyzing whether their current design fits this new model», adds.
Jose Mittelbrum, national director of Office Leasing at CBRE Spain, points out that «what does seem clear is that companies will focus even more than before on buildings that offer the highest quality standards, where they will preserve both the health of users and the environment».
Also, the manager clarifies that, although the hiring trend is positive, the caution on the part of tenants when making decisions and the progressive increase of the space on offer translates into a slight adjustment of the prime rents (35.50 euros/sqm/month in Madrid and 27.50 euros/sqm/month in Barcelona).