The present pandemic has accelerated many trends within the market. The main accelerated trend was the need for technological solutions to enable remote working. Businesses have had to evolve to align with Covid-19’s regulations, restrictions and constraints.
Prior to the global pandemic which has, and will have, severe economic consequences, the property industry was taking strain. The Urban Real Estate Research Unit, based at the University of Cape Town, had concluded that the vacancy costs for a landlord had increased from 6 months of lost income to 18 months by the beginning of January 2020. This, together with rising operating costs and increased rates and taxes, has meant that landlords need to find more efficient ways of filling their vacancies, together with reducing the cost in doing so. Fears are mounting that the impact of Covid-19 could potentially result in thousands of job losses with businesses closing and vacancy rates spiking sharply. However, these changes are cyclical and structural and as some businesses close, other new industries are created. It is anticipated that the Covid-19 pandemic may just have accelerated the disruptor effect and that certain technology changes and shifts in behavioural patterns may occur sooner. This may well be the case for remote learning, online shopping etc., but it will still be important for humans to socialise, party, attend shows and other recreational activities.
The coronavirus has rocked the entire world, shaking every corner of the globe with a fury that has been unmatched since the Second World War. A week is a long time in political life and even more so during this time. Markets are changing as we speak.