布莱恩·比格（Brian Biege）, a senior vice president with CBRE in Seattle, said hybrid work did not mean permanently vacant buildings.
“Many Puget Sound tech companies have grown their business during the pandemic,” Biege said. “While most are embracing a hybrid work format, they are also investing in office space as part of their plans for future growth.”
According to CBRE, the tech industry helped drive the rebound in U.S. office-leasing activity in 2021. Hiring was up — U.S. tech employment now exceeds its pre-crisis level by 3.3% — and even though many of these new hires didn’t immediately head into an office, many companies planned as if they would.
In fact, office leasing activity by tech companies nationally increased by 122% on average in the second and third quarters, compared to early 2021.
In Seattle, while leases appear to be up, many offices remain largely empty as companies adopt to hybrid or fully remote work policies.
Office space listed for sublease by tech companies in the Tech-30 markets including the Seattle area nearly doubled from last year’s first quarter to this year’s third quarter. Additionally, in those markets tech companies account for 23% of the space put back on the market as sublease.
This means that while the lease market numbers may appear good currently, the volume of subleasing might provide an indication of long-term plans to eventually vacate surplus space.