In the last decades US non-property companies have opened up increasingly to alternatives to real estate ownership and thus have reduced their holdings. European companies followed this trend in a more cautious way still showing generally higher ownership ratios. Incentives might become stronger in the future though, if owning real estate competes with new business requirements and thus harms firm performance. Despite the great number of articles analyzing the contribution of real estate ownership to non-property company’s performance, the business environment and especially external trends are rarely considered. Therefore, this paper addresses two main questions: Firstly, how real estate ownership affects organizational performance in general and secondly, whether the contribution of ownership changes considering future market trends. Using the example of German non-property companies, the article analyzes whether firms affected by structural change demonstrate a higher willingness to reduce corporate real estate (CRE) ownership holdings. The paper begins with a literature based elaboration of the term structural change followed by a comparison of international ownership holdings. In a next step the relationship between ownership and its impact on organizational performance considering influences of business environment is summarized in a theoretical framework. Hereafter, a multivariate cluster analysis is performed on a dataset taken from the study by Just and Pfnuer (2016). In a last step, the identified firm clusters are tested regarding their tendency to reduce ownership holdings. The article provides diverse explanations of why ownership could harm firm performance if market trends are considered. In accordance with these findings, the results of the multivariate analysis suggest that the higher firms are affected by structural change, the higher is their willingness to reduce ownership by sale-and-rent-back transactions. This article differs from existing literature in two ways. Instead of using balance sheet data, the analysis applied in this article is based on a dataset of surveyed CRE managers. Moreover, the paper takes a broader view on ownership and firm performance by including the business environment. First hints show that structural change and associated new business requirements change the relevance of CRE ownership. In order to avoid competitive disadvantages, especially European firms should scrutinize their high ownership ratios.