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The office sublease market swelled dramatically during the pandemic in major cities, but one industry was a bright spot: law firms. Unlike tech companies, financial services companies and energy companies—which drove the glut of sublease space in major cities—law firms only contributed 5% to 7% of office space the sublease market, according to research from Savills.

Law firms based in San Francisco contributed the least office space to the market during the COVID outbreak, with about 1% of office space in the sublease market coming from them. Chicago, New York and Los Angeles law firms contributed only 5% and 6%, respectively, to the market through the end of last year. Washington DC was the only outlier. At the end of 2020, DC-based office space from law firms accounted for 31% of the space on the sublease market. However, in the first half of 2020, law firms took back nearly half of the space, bringing the total law firm-contributed sublease space in the market to 16%.

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Kelsi Maree Borland

Kelsi Maree Borland is a freelance journalist and magazine writer based in Los Angeles, California. For more than 5 years, she has extensively reported on the commercial real estate industry, covering major deals across all commercial asset classes, investment strategy and capital markets trends, market commentary, economic trends and new technologies disrupting and revolutionizing the industry. Her work appears daily on GlobeSt.com and regularly in Real Estate Forum Magazine. As a magazine writer, she covers lifestyle and travel trends. Her work has appeared in Angeleno, Los Angeles Magazine, Travel and Leisure and more.

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