Half of all estate agency bosses expect it will be at least next Summer before their businesses return to a semblance of normality after Covid, a survey has found.
Polling firm Corenet Global asked agents around the world including in the UK when they expected at least half their staff to be back at their desks, and 50% of those surveyed said the earliest would be June 2021.
The agents also confirmed that Covid will have a lasting effect on working patterns, with two-thirds predicting that the ‘nine-to-five’, daily commute familiar to many would not return once Covid has been eradicated.
Once the pandemic has died down, the survey reports, half of employees’ time will be spent in their branch while the rest will be spent working from home or at a co-working space.
As we have reported, many agents are currently using co-working spaces to enable social distancing rules to be adhered to, but teams kept together.
Other key developments that have been created by the pandemic include home working allowances paid to employees, home working becoming a standard condition within employment contracts and companies relocating head offices to less Covid-prone suburban locations.
The survey coincides with a call by one of the industry’s largest member organisations, The Guild, which yesterday said its member agents should continue working from home whenever possible.
It also urged agents to do as much of their job virtually as they can including valuations, viewings, meetings, negotiations, inspections and even check outs.