The Financial Impacts of Coworking: Rental Prices and Market Dynamics in the Commercial Office Market
43 Pages Posted: 14 Nov 2019 Last revised: 27 Nov 2019
Date Written: October 31, 2019
Coworking providers, like WeWork, have shifted the competitive landscape for office tenants through differentiating office amenities, leasing fully-equipped desks or offices over flexible time periods. However, even though coworking providers are a tenant type in consumer demand, little is known about the strategic interaction of this growing tenant with landlords in the real estate sector. In this paper, we assess landlord-coworking provider interaction through lease contract valuation, assessing if landlords see coworking providers as a substitute, benefit or risk, compared to other tenants. Using lease contracts from six US cities between 2008 to 2018, we compare rent conditions between coworking providers and tenants within the same building. We document that landlords treat coworking providers as substitutes not differentiating in effective rent compared to other tenants. Coworking providers take systematically longer lease durations, resulting in higher tenant incentives, such as free rent periods and tenant improvement concessions. Controlling for lease duration, coworking providers receive significantly more tenant concessions. We do not find value-increasing external effects of coworking providers, concluding that landlords are indifferent towards coworking tenants.
Keywords: Coworking, Shared office, Hotdesking, Commercial Real Estate
JEL Classification: R33, R39, 033
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation