Contact Us
Sponsored Content

More Money And A Return To The Office: Real Estate Professionals Offer Their Outlook On 2021


It’s safe to say that 2020 will go on record as being one of the most challenging years in the history of the real estate industry, but that hasn’t dampened the spirits of real estate professionals. In fact, many are confident in the way their firms handled the coronavirus pandemic and are looking forward to increased compensation and new job opportunities in 2021. 

Each year in the final weeks of December, SelectLeaders, the leading commercial real estate job board in the United States, conducts an industrywide survey in cooperation with the 11 premier real estate professional associations whose career centers it helps power, including the Building Owners and Managers Association International, the CRE Finance Council and NAIOP. The goal is to gain insights on the past year from a wide range of real estate professionals, including job candidates, employers, managers and HR executives, and to learn their thoughts on the upcoming year. 

This year, respondents were asked about everything from remote work to their company’s pandemic response to the future of diversity hiring at their firm. Their responses were filled with excitement, frustration and hope for the year ahead. Perhaps most surprisingly, many of their answers were nearly identical to answers given in 2019’s survey, suggesting that the pandemic may not have had as big an impact on real estate professionals' goals and opinions as many may have thought. 

Nearly 80% of survey respondents said they believe their companies successfully handled the impact of COVID-19, and 59% believe their compensation will increase in 2021. However, these positive statistics do not mean people want to stay static: 77% of respondents said that they would consider a career move in 2021, close to the 79% of respondents who said they would consider making a move in 2020.

A graph showing how respondents to the SelectLeaders survey feel about their company's COVID-19 response.

“We have to learn how to adapt in this new environment,” one survey respondent said. “We will continue to see adjustments to how we interact with others moving forward. Everyone needs to do their part to make the change so we can all help each other be successful.” 

While many were pleased with the flexibility and additional time with their families that working from home grants, the vast majority of respondents agreed that a permanent work-from-home plan was not feasible. 

“I have really enjoyed working from home," one person wrote. "I can be very productive and work longer hours. However, you can’t replace face to face collaboration so there still needs to be a balance if remote work continues into the future.”

While some respondents said they believe that their company is already doing an excellent job of hiring diverse talent, others expressed hope that 2021 will be the year that real estate puts an increased focus on diversity.

“It is essential that [Black, Indigenous and people of color] are provided with equitable opportunities that allow for advancement within their career,” one respondent said. “Companies need to do more to ensure this happens.”

So, how much did companies’ revenues change as a result of the pandemic? What percentage of real estate professionals are considering relocating for work after the tumultuous year they experienced? Are people getting more done from home than they were in the office? To find out the answer to these and other questions about how real estate is reflecting on the past year and planning for the future, read the results of the SelectLeaders survey here

This article was produced in collaboration between SelectLeaders and Studio B. Bisnow news staff was not involved in the production of this content.

Studio B is Bisnow’s in-house content and design studio. To learn more about how Studio B can help your team, reach out to