Fortune favours the bold, so they say. And, in this edition of Perspectives, there is a fair share of bold ideas for how businesses in the real estate industry can adapt to the post-Covid environment.

Mitchell Labiak

Mitchell Labiak

The first example comes from James Emson, managing director of Clive Emson. He is advocating for a hybrid future to auctions. While the auctioneering world is social by nature, he nevertheless believes the workarounds the auctions market found during the Covid lockdowns will continue post-pandemic.

“The message I want to put out to our sector is that there is no need to rush back to a physical auction room just yet,” he says. “While this statement may annoy some of my fellow auctioneers – especially when 68% of the UK population has received their vaccination to protect themselves from Covid-19 – I think it is important to remember how well we adapted when we were in the depths of the pandemic just 18 months ago.”

Paul Speariett, regional director of Yardi, also believes that the hybrid style of working is the future. “After the largest working-from-home experiment the world has ever embarked on, it’s clear that very few of us will be going back to five days a week in the office,” he says. In his piece, Speariett asks what all of this means for visitor management.

Finally, there’s Wildstone, which is banking on the idea that — after 18 months of people being locked inside — outdoor advertising is set for a boom. The company refers to an “attention recession” in which a world where people are bombarded by information every day makes advertising harder to get through.

Damian Cox, chief executive and founder of Wildstone, says that this is where outdoor advertising comes in.

“The huge benefit of digital outdoor media infrastructure is the cut through,” he explains.

For real estate businesses, this means there is an opportunity. “What I would say to property owners who probably haven’t been getting very much money from their billboard assets for some time is to give us a call,”

Cox says. “You may have more value in your asset than you currently believe.”

Indeed, fortune may well favour those businesses willing to take Cox up on his offer, or embrace Emson’s and Speariett’s bold ideas for hybrid working.

Mitchell Labiak is news and nance editor at Property Week