The right balance: A new demand to take care of the general wellbeing of real estate’s end users has sprung up following the COVID-19 crisis. But what does this mean in practice?
As fear of the pandemic spread across the world last year and the UK entered its first lockdown, tenants at the Duet Salford Quays apartments in Manchester woke up to a pleasant surprise.
On a cold April morning the smell of freshly baked bread filled the building’s hallways. Breakfast bags containing bread, eggs, milk and avocados had been placed outside of their doors, in a move aimed at lifting their spirits. “It was a random act of kindness that had a huge impact on wellness,” says Heiko Figge, head of operational asset management at private equity real estate fund manager Moorfield, which owns the apartments.
As the pandemic dragged on, Moorfield broadened the range of online services aimed at keeping tenants happy and occupancy rates high. It organised coffee chats over the internet, virtual painting lessons, and advice on freshening up resumes for those who found themselves suddenly back on the job market. The moves were part of changes prompted by the wel