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How Can NYC Offices Appeal To Tenants’ Needs? Ingram Associate Leads Office Leasing Panel At Oct. 24 Bisnow Event


It has been nearly four years since the start of the pandemic, and while many companies have been urging employees to return to work in person, it seems unlikely that five days a week in the office will become the norm again.

Mike Mulia, associate at New York City-based real estate law firm Ingram Yuzek Gainen Carroll & Bertolotti, said the majority of companies in the region have embraced hybrid work. He referred to this period as a “new reality” while also expressing a sense of optimism for the future.

“While Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays in the office are pretty busy, Mondays and Fridays aren’t so much, and we're going to have to adjust to that reality,” Mulia said. “On both the landlord and tenant leasing side, I predict the market will stabilize and start to make sense, even if things get worse before they get better.”

For landlords and owners in the NYC office market, working toward this new reality may involve getting creative with their locations and amenity offerings to entice tenants and their employees to stay for the long term.

Landlords and owners can learn more by attending Bisnow’s New York Office: Problem-Solving for Tenants and the Workplace event on Oct. 24. The event will cover topics including financing options, the attributes businesses are looking for in their office buildings and locations, and how the sector is expected to fare in the coming years. Click here to register.

Mulia will be representing Ingram at the Oct. 24 event, moderating the Office Leasing Outlook panel. Its participants will dive into the impacts of subleasing on lease negotiations and the tenants in the office market.

In a conversation with Bisnow, Mulia discussed the challenges and considerations for landlords and tenants when procuring office space in NYC, how Ingram works with both parties and what he looks forward to at the event.

Bisnow: How do you view the current state of the NYC office market? 

Mulia: The NYC office market is the most tenant-friendly that I've seen in recent years. I think that has to do with the return-to-office mindset that landlords are trying to have and enticing tenants to come back more often than not.

From my perspective, as far as trends go, tenants are being a little bit more insistent about concessions in their office spaces. Additionally, tenant improvement amounts are getting increasingly higher for improvement allowances. There’s also a decent amount of subleasing because existing tenants either don't need as much space anymore or are just trying to get rid of space. 

Overall, NYC has a tenant-friendly office market, but I think it also depends on the class we're talking about. For Class-A, maybe there’s less incentive to be tenant-friendly, as there’s still a desire to be in those spaces.

Bisnow: What motivated you to speak at Bisnow’s New York Office: Problem-Solving for Tenants and the Workplace event?

Mulia: It’s great to have any opportunity to get out and talk to professionals in the office sector. I appreciate the opportunity to get different landlords’ and tenants’ perspectives and not just hear from other attorneys. It's good to speak with professionals doing these deals or owning and occupying their spaces. I like to get their point of view on what’s going on in the sector and give mine as well.

Bisnow: What are some of the other challenges that are impacting the office market in NYC?

Mulia: From a landlord’s side, the challenge is figuring out how to make these deals work on paper financially. When considering the amount of allowances and where rents are at, it gets more and more difficult to make these deals work, and landlords have to get proactive and creative. 

From the tenant side, they need to consider if it makes sense for them to have office space. Those who currently have a work-from-home policy should think about how much office space is practical to have. Do we make it so that everybody has their own office? Do we have a shared office arrangement with an open plan? It's all about figuring out what works best for your company’s needs.

The challenges of the office market are also impacting businesses that surround offices, such as restaurants and bars, that rely on people showing up to work to consume their services. A neighborhood bar that would normally have a Friday happy hour may be impacted if nobody comes to the office on Fridays. These businesses are seeing impacts on their bottom line.

Bisnow: How does Ingram help its clients in the NYC office market?

Mulia: Office tenants encompass a good portion of our business. We represent a lot of tenants, not just in NYC but throughout the country. We aim to negotiate the strongest terms possible for tenants. We also represent some landlords as well and try to negotiate the best deals for them. It’s important to protect our clients while staying practical in the way we approach these negotiations.

Learn more about Bisnow's New York Office: Problem-Solving for Tenants and the Workplace event and register here.

This article was produced in collaboration between Ingram Yuzek Gainen Carroll & Bertolotti and Studio B. Bisnow news staff was not involved in the production of this content.

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