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July 26, 2021 / 2021 Power 25 Real Estate

2021 Power 25 Real Estate: Chris Ostop

Chris Ostop is another top broker in Hartford.

He’s the managing director of JLL, which did $110 million in commercial volume activity in 2020, ranking it third on HBJ’s list of largest commercial brokers.

Ostop is JLL’s broker lead for central Connecticut and western Massachusetts and is active locally, having served as a board commissioner of the Hartford Business Improvement District.

Chris Ostop

Ostop and JLL have been part of some of the biggest real estate transactions in Hartford, including selling, on two separate occasions, City Place I, the city’s and state’s largest office tower. City Place last traded hands in 2015 when it was purchased by Boston real estate investment firm Paradigm Properties for $113.3 million.

JLL now represents Paradigm as the property’s broker.

Ostop has had a front-row seat to witness many changes in Hartford’s office market over the years.

He predicts Greater Hartford will see a modest increase in its office vacancy rate in the coming months, although there is still uncertainty on exactly how companies will utilize their office space post-COVID.

“In the near term we expect many larger companies to adopt a flexible workspace, which allows employees the flexibility of remote working for one to two days per week,” he said recently. “As a result, companies will have fewer people in the office day to day and they will reduce their office sizes accordingly.”

He continued: “Smaller firms in the area are already heading back to the office while the larger local corporations are waiting until September 1 before they fully reopen. Many corporations are recognizing the need to return to the office in order to maintain a culture of collaboration, which is difficult to fully reproduce through online meetings. In all likelihood, an exclusive work-from-home program will only be available to a small group of employees, while a flexible schedule will be available to almost everyone.”

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