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Boost to Scotland’s commercial property market as year comes to an end

MORE than £2.5 billion is expected to have been invested in Scotland’s commercial market by the end of the year, according to one global property company.

Some £2.485bn worth of deals have already been completed, and Savills says this will round up by Hogmanay.

The figures mark a 10% increase on those from last year.

Nick Penny, head of Scotland at Savills and director in the investment team, said: “Regardless of Brexit, the simple economic argument around supply and demand of good quality offices is very compelling for Scotland.

“Our development pipeline and general market confidence was paused for longer than the rest of the UK following the financial crash due to uncertainty around the independence referendum. The result is a critically low level of Grade A office supply in Edinburgh and Glasgowthat makes a strong case for rental growth and new development.

“Highlighting this point is the reality that Edinburgh’s development pipeline is now almost entirely pre-let.

“Low yields in Edinburgh reflect the potential for growth and lack of risk however despite the strong level of investor demand for the Scottish capital, a lack of assets being marketed for sale in 2018 as a result of preceding record levels of activity has hampered overall transaction volumes.”

In 2018, Glasgow saw nearly twice the office transactions than Edinburgh did, and Aberdeen also saw a rise in activity with close to £170 million changing hands.

Penny added this greater spread of investment activity across Scottish cities, rather than specifically in Edinburgh, was notable.

“By investing in Edinburgh, and Glasgow, you are investing in a landlords’ market as supply is so limited and with its World Heritage status there will be restricted opportunity to change this dynamic in Edinburgh.

“Meanwhile, in Aberdeen a gradual improving economy and uptick in office activity being led by the oil and gas sector is piquing the interest of those investors looking for value.”

Savills says prime office yields in Edinburgh are at 4.5%, Glasgow 5.25% and 6.25% in Aberdeen.

Source: The National

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New opportunities and risks in evolving market

It is widely accepted that we have reached a late stage of the property cycle. Some even argue that a downturn has already set in. However, our view is that while values feel pretty full, we certainly aren’t in bubble territory. It is reassuring to note that UK commercial property values have increased half as much as they did during the last cycle and the industry as a whole is nothing like as highly geared as it was in the run-up to the financial crisis a decade ago.

However, as lenders and investors, we can’t afford to be complacent. We remain alert to the risks of lending late in the cycle which today are as much, if not more, of a concern as structural changes in the market. Against this background, we have still been able to find value and we have invested more than £800m over the past 12 months, including our largest transactions to date in both our senior debt and partnership capital strategies, while we have been able to back some very interesting residential development opportunities in London and the South East.

The most obvious risk in today’s market is posed by changes to shopping habits. The inexorable rise of online shopping has already started to bite hard into the retail property market and undoubtedly, values and rents will continue to come under more pressure. We have therefore been reducing our exposure against retail property for some time but we are not turning our backs on the market completely.

”As lenders and investors, we can’t afford to be complacent. We remain alert to late-cycle risks”

While there is clearly trouble ahead for department stores and the centres they anchor, many retail centres will continue to attract shoppers, particularly those in densely populated areas that are focused on convenience shopping. We’ll continue to back borrowers and partners with deep retail experience in this part of the market.

The industrial market presents very different challenges for us. The rise of ecommerce is driving growing occupier demand but this means competition between investors to buy assets and between lenders to fund them is high. We have been active in the industrial market for many years but, with investment yields contracting to record levels, we see better relative value in development than investment and have funded two speculative warehouse schemes in the South East in recent months. Having said that, one of our biggest loans this year, and the largest loan to date in the senior debt programme, was the £125m refinance of an industrial portfolio, predominantly located in the West Midlands.

‘Live-work-play’ situation

The office market is also going through a period of rapid change with TMT tenants driving demand in many parts of the country, not just London, which are often followed by co-working operators, with most looking for that millennial-friendly ‘live-work-play’ situation. We are keen to support borrowers targeting this market, as evidenced by our loan earlier this year to support FORE Partnership’s £51m acquisition of Tower Bridge Court on the South Bank. It was our first office deal in London since 2015 and we are on the lookout for others as pricing for value-add investments in the capital is looking increasingly attractive.

evolving market

Tower Bridge Court £51m acquisition and refurbishment whole loan

We also continue to target the other major UK cities, confident that despite the uncertainty around Brexit, there are good lending opportunities available. The fundamentals of the office market in large UK cities remain healthy. Demand for space is robust; this has been driven by strong employment growth; supply remains tight due to a lack of new development and a similar lack of conversion of secondary office space to residential under development law.

Alternatives also look more attractive than ever. In an environment where Brexit brings an uncertain economic outlook, it clearly makes sense to be lending and investing in sectors where demand isn’t tied to the economic cycle. One such example is data centres; demand for data is set to grow exponentially but there are a very limited number of locations that can meet data centres’ specific requirements for connectivity or power. As well as backing student accommodation and hotels, which have been our alternatives bread and butter since 2011, we have been providing finance for data centres as well as a number of other non-traditional assets this year.

Indeed, we made our biggest-ever loan across the business this year in the alternatives sector – a £200m whole loan to Royale, an operator of permanent park homes aimed at the over-50s. The loan was backed by 27 individual parks and 3,500 plots, providing a good level of granularity. We also like the fact that the number of over-50s is set to grow at twice the rate of the whole population.

This year, ICG-Longbow expanded its direct investment activities with the launch of our build-to-rent business, through the Wise Living joint venture with SDL Group, and a pan-European sale-and-leaseback strategy. Growing both will be a key focus for us in 2019. Increasing demand for private rented housing gives us confidence in the outlook for build-to-rent, particularly as our focus is on family housing, which is an undersupplied part of the market. The sale-and-leaseback business is also an exciting venture for us that brings together ICG-Longbow’s property expertise with ICG Group’s 29-year track record of investing in European corporate credit deals.

We also plan to expand our partnership capital lending and investing activity into continental Europe in due course. For us, it’s a natural progression for the business and doesn’t mean we’re any less interested in the UK. Although the UK market faces challenges, not least Brexit, we are still firm believers that there are plenty of good opportunities out there.

Healthy sign for the market

Looking at the supply of capital to the market, we see that banks remain cautious and have lowered their LTVs. However, we see this as a healthy sign for the market as a whole and they at least remain active. From our perspective, the fact they have pulled back somewhat is helpful for obvious reasons. When it comes to our senior lending, we used to compete with the banks mainly on our flexibility and speed, whereas now there is usually substantial clear water between our terms and the banks on leverage, while in the higher LTV whole loan market there are only a handful of lenders equipped to underwrite more complex property strategies, including value-add and development.

Finally, in the residential construction market, we have seen more activity from other non-bank lenders, but in our opinion this has been more than offset by a couple of UK banks pulling back from the market, while the volume of debt capital available still remains low relative to financing requirements.

With positive occupational fundamentals in all but retail, we look ahead to 2019 with confidence that there will be plenty of attractive lending opportunities, despite (or even potentially resulting from) the ongoing political uncertainty. Having raised nearly £900m across our senior debt, partnership capital and residential development strategies this year and with fundraising efforts still ongoing, we have plenty of firepower coming into the new year and we look forward to continuing to support our customers with our flexible capital and partnership approach going forward.

Source: Property Week

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Decline in new UK commercial property construction work within private sector

The results of the EU referendum have been detrimental to the commercial property sector with the number of constructions continually decreasing, according to an analysis of the figures by Savoy Stewart.

With figures from the Office of National Statistics (ONS) showing a monthly decline in the number of new UK commercial construction work undertaken by the private sector since December 2017, the property firm analysed the number of commercial properties available to let in 20 of the biggest cities in the UK.

As expected, the city with the highest number of commercial properties to let was England’s capital city London, which had 6,137 properties in November 2018 available for businesses to rent.  However, figures from estate advisory organisation Colliers claims that 90 percent of London office availability is constituted by second-hand product, while new/refurbished availability is down by over a third in the past year.

Scotland’s capital city Edinburgh had the second lowest number of commercial properties on the market to let (133). And although Edinburgh’s figures seem to be less intriguing than anticipated, it seems Scottish commercial real estate has experienced a bounce back, with a total return of 1.7 percent in the third quarter of 2018; a 1.4 percent rebound in the second quarter.

The figures, which were extracted from property website Zoopla for the month of November 2018 also showed that The cities with the highest number of commercial properties to let in November 2018 on Zoopla were: London (6,137), Derby (822), Birmingham (724), Manchester (501) and Leeds (481).

The cities with the lowest number of commercial properties to let in November 2018 were: Preston (153), Coventry (145), Belfast (145), Edinburgh (133) and Newport (128).

Source: Work & Place

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What does the future of property finance look like?

Looking to the next decade of real estate financing, a number of factors are on the minds of lenders and borrowers including the rise in the volume of debt finance and the impact that technology may play.

As the commercial real estate finance sector becomes more fragmented and complex in the UK and Europe, I believe debt advisers will play an even more significant role here, as they currently do in the US. In the future, advisers will be selected for their brainpower, commercial and technical ability, breadth of relationships, and ability to advise on complex situations and structures.

One of the main insights from our discussion was that the debt adviser is going to play an ever-important role in the sector as funding becomes more fragmented and new lending capital emerges. Attendees also debated the role that technology will play in the future of the property finance sector, and the importance of traditional relationship banking vs. the new-age software algorithm driven approach to bring deals together.

Our recent roundtable at Spire Ventures, which also brought in technology experts, highlighted the impact that technological advances could make in coming years.

While traditionalists defended the role of relationships in finding borrowers’ the finance they require, proptech challengers highlighted the role of technology to deliver a more efficient experience for borrowers and lenders alike. The consensus reached was that a hybrid approach that is both technology-enabled and relationship-driven would be the future of the CRE debt sector. Attendees agreed that there is a tremendous amount of change yet to come to the sector, and it’s definitely a sector to keep an eye on. Ultimately, however, even with the best technology in the world, you can’t AI away good old-fashioned commercial instinct.

Faisal Butt, founder of private equity boutique Spire Ventures and venture capital firm Pi Labs

Source: Property Week

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Commercial property market ‘showing plenty of resilience’ in Yorkshire

Despite the wider UK economic uncertainties and of course the unknowns of Brexit, the commercial property market in Yorkshire is holding up well and showing plenty of the resilience the region is famed for.

The industrial market in particular is very active, with increasing numbers of businesses looking to expand outside city areas into the many industrial parks that have sprung up in recent years. In the latest RICS commercial property market surveycovering Q3 of this year, surveyors were positive about Yorkshire with one observing that there are “no signs of pre-Brexit jitters”, adding however that “we need more stock to enable occupiers to fulfil their expansion plans”. The demand for good commercial space is high.

Turning to the focal point of the regional economy, Leeds, the city is home to many major development schemes. A report from Leeds city council published in 2017 highlighted that there had been £3.9bn of development schemes completed in the city over the previous ten years – with a further £7bn in the pipeline. You only need to look at the number of cranes against the skyline to see that this activity is still forging ahead.

The blot on the landscape, however, is retail. The national malaise affecting the High Street applies in Yorkshire as much as anywhere else. Many city centre shopping centres are struggling to attract business. Some areas with a relatively wealthy demographic, such as Harrogate, may be continuing to attract footfall, but other cities in the region are undoubtedly finding the going tougher. Retail property values are struggling to hold up and funds have begun to exit the sector in favour of office and industrial.

The Chancellor’s Budget recently included measures to help the High Street, with £900m in business rates relief for small businesses, a £675m ‘future high streets fund’ for the transformation of high streets and potential changes to planning rules to allow shops to be converted in homes and offices. How far these measures will go, in Yorkshire and nationally, to support the retail sector and stimulate demand for space only time will tell.

One of the great factors supporting the resilience of the Yorkshire market is the attractiveness of the region as a place to live and work. The population of Leeds, for example, is projected to grow from 779,000 in 2016 to 826,000 in 2026 – an increase of 6%. The popularity of the region as a place to live means that it will also remain a good place to do business, underpinning both the residential and commercial markets. This will be further bolstered when HS2 eventually comes on line, increasing and improving connectivity.

The recent decision of Channel 4 to make Leeds its new national headquarters was further proof of the attractiveness of our region and a great shot in the arm for the city. It will have a ripple effect across the local economy.

Lenders remain active in the market, willing to lend against good residential and commercial developments.

With a growing population, improving infrastructure and funding available, the region’s property market looks set to continue to offer attractive opportunities for both developers and occupiers.

Source: The Business Desk

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Commercial property deals soar as ‘strength in depth’ is celebrated

The East Midlands’ real estate transactions rocketed by 24% to £700m, compared with the same period in 2017, according to the latest research from JLL’s capital markets team.

JLL’s analysis shows that across the UK, transaction levels were the strongest seen in any Q1-Q3 period since 2014. The largest overseas buyer group came from the Asia-Pacific region, accounting for 17% of all deals, with European investors taking 14%.

Ben Kelly of JLL’s Midlands Capital Markets team says that whilst European appetite for real estate assets has been subdued by political uncertainty, would be investors from further afield appear less affected by such concerns, and are simply looking for long term value.

“When we talk to overseas buyers, they are keen to take advantage of opportunities here, because of the yields they can achieve against those they see in other markets, and also movements in the currency markets which favour them,” he says.

“Having said that, relative pricing in the East Midlands still makes it a very attractive market for domestic capital and this is creating a competitive marketplace.”

Further encouragement for the East Midlands came just after Q3 ended, as CEG acquired Nottingham’s City Gate scheme, whose 175,000 sq ft of space makes it one of the city centre’s largest office schemes. CEG acquired City Gate in a joint venture with a Swedish Pension Fund, demonstrating the international profile of the current purchaser audience.

Having worked on the sale alongside JLL capital markets team, James Keeton, director within the agency team of JLL’s Nottingham office believes the strength of the region’s real estate economy lies in its depth.

“As the City Gate deal showed, it’s not only the industrial and logistics sectors that are seeing strong activity in the East Midlands; well-let prime office schemes continue to attract investors, particularly those where buyers are confident, they can add value, often through strong asset management and refurbishments.

“Equally, it’s the buoyancy of our industrial, distribution and logistics markets which underpins deal activity year on year. Our strategic location as a region continues to deliver robust demand, especially for prime M1 locations and with continued letting activity and speculative development across the region, investor demand is anticipated to deliver a very strong 2018 in terms of transactional activity.”

Source: The Business Desk

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Six facts you need to know about commercial mortgages in the UK

Commercial mortgages are the mortgages that are acquired on different commercial properties. These properties can include shops, office buildings, industrial buildings, factories, apartment complexes, and other such buildings. Simply put it is the loan that you secure on a property that you own but it is not your residence and is being used for some commercial activity. The loan is usually used to acquire, redevelop or refinance the commercial property against which it is being taken. As every commercial property holds a different value it one of the challenges of commercial mortgage is that it has to be assessed differently for each property. To find out more about commercial mortgages you need to go through the following 6 facts about commercial mortgage in the UK.

Difference between commercial mortgage and business loans is that business loans that are usually up to £25,000 don’t need to be secured and can be acquired easily from most of the lenders across the UK. However, if you want to get a loan that is higher than £25,000 then the lenders require you to give them some sort of security in return. This is to make sure that the risks to the lender are reduced. Furthermore, there are many legal and administrative costs that are involved in the when you take a loan on a commercial property which is one of the reasons that most of the lenders don’t advise you to take this loan if the amount is less than £50,000. Some lenders have a minimum limit of £75,000 when the commercial mortgage is involved.

Most of the people are confused about how much they can borrow while when they are thinking about taking a commercial mortgage. Well if you are the owner of the property you will easily find the loan between 70% to 75% of the value of the property against which you are taking a loan. If you want to acquire a loan against an investment it will be determined by the money it is generating through rental income but it will not exceed 65% of the value of the property. If it is a business which includes stocks and goodwill etc. then the amount will be further reduced accordingly.

People often get confused about the arrangement fee and why it is being added to the loan. Most of the lenders ask their clients to deposit a non-refundable arrangement fee that is usually 1% to 2% of the actual loan. This fee is sometimes added to the total loan that you are asking for and sometimes the lenders ask the clients to deposit it along with the application form. This fee is considered as a fee of the lender for processing your loan application. Even if your loan application is rejected this fee will not be returned to you. With loans up to £ 1 million the fee is usually 1-2% but as the mortgage amount decreases this percentage increases.

A valuation fee is also a topic of concern for many people who are seeking commercial mortgage in the UK. As mentioned earlier commercial properties are far too variable in their value as compared to residential properties. If you want a loan against any residential property you will not be required to pay a valuation fee but for commercial value an expert has to visit your property and prepare a document of 20 to 30 pages indicating the current value of your property and for that you have to pay the lender or the third party used for evaluation.

Legal fees are also to be paid by the person who is seeking a commercial mortgage and they have to pay for themselves and the lender. The legal fee depends upon the complexity of the contract but they usually start for £500 for each party. If you choose different lawyers in the same firm to represent you and the lender this amount can be reduced.

Commercial mortgages are usually long-term loans and their time can range from 3 years to 25 years. If you are looking for something that is a little short-term there are loans available for that too. These are called bridging loans or property development loans and their time period is usually from a few weeks up to 2 years.

Source: London Loves Business

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Commercial property investment ‘subdued’ in third quarter says report

COMMERCIAL property investment in the third quarter of 2018 remained ‘subdued’ in Northern Ireland, with volume recorded at £53.2m, according to Lambert Smith Hampton’s latest regional investment transactions report.

The ITNI Bulletin reports that year-to-date total investment volume stands at £121m, a decrease of 52 percent on the same period in 2017.

And while investor appetite has improved, Q3 activity overall remained low at 38 percent below the five-year quarterly average.

On the upside, the latest quarter did see the first office investments of 2018.

With a combined value of £39.4m, three assets changed hands in Belfast city centre, accounting for 74 percent of the quarterly volume.

These included the Metro Building for £21.8m (a yield of 5.75 per cent), Obel 68 for £15.2m (yield 6.73 per cent) and 20 Adelaide Street for £2.4m (yield 7.2 per cent).

The two largest deals of the quarter were by a local property company and Belfast Harbour Commissioners.

Private Northern Irish investors were very active, and this group is responsible for the largest proportion of investment volume in the year-to-date.

Martin McCloy, director of capital markets at Lambert Smith Hampton, said: “Although subdued in comparison to recent years, investment has remained resilient in the face of the political and economic headwinds of the last two years.

“We anticipate that quarter four will follow the same trend as the two previous quarters, with £20m of deals currently agreed or in legals.

“Investor appetite remains and investors are taking advantage where clear value can be found with quality assets quickly being agreed.”

He added: “The uncertainty continues regarding the exact detail of the withdrawal and future relationship agreements between the UK and EU.

“A blueprint for the future trade and security partnership should further increase confidence amongst investors and the commercial property market.”

Source: Irish News

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Commercial real estate might be reliably disinteresting now, but don’t get too cosy

At a time of political and market turbulence in the UK, there is one area where we’ve seen relative stability. Commercial real estate data in recent months has been fairly constant, with no significant changes to the outlook.

The returns for commercial real estate have remained disappointing relative to recent years, yet there has been some comfort in the lack of surprises from the sector. It’s been reliably disinteresting.

UK commercial real estate has delivered capital value appreciation of 1.9 per cent this year, for a six-month total return of 4.5 per cent. For the rest of 2018, we see potential for capital values to modestly increase, though rental income will most likely make up the largest share of return delivered to investors.

Looking ahead, we expect slightly weaker performance next year. The Investment Property Forum consensus suggests that capital values will decline 1.4 per cent next year, with London offices down 1.2 per cent.

We consider these forecasts reasonable given the slowing economic backdrop in the UK, wavering demand for UK commercial real estate, and a supply increase. The data, then, looks fairly benign.

Yet there are a number of downside risks which have been bubbling under the surface – and investors would be wise to keep an eye on these.

Factors we’d put on risk watch include the UK interest rate environment, sterling strength, and Brexit negotiations. These macro factors could skew the outlook.

Investors should ask themselves the following questions.

Are UK interest rates back?

Interest rates have always been a key consideration for real estate investors, yet the lack of movement during the past decade has put them at the bottom of the priority list.

Real estate is heavily debt-financed, so the cost of debt is an important factor when considering profitability from the sector.

In August, we saw interest rates rise above 0.75 per cent for the first time in 10 years. While our base case is that we will see no Bank of England rate hikes in the near future, a change in economic fundamentals could cause the Bank of England to hike.

Further interest rate hikes cannot be ruled out altogether, and if sustained, could jeopardise capital values – particularly if rates rise against a weakening rental outlook.

Could sterling’s strength return?

Sterling strength is another key consideration. Brexit negotiations in particular can cause spikes and dips in the currency.

Michel Barnier’s comments that the European Union wants to keep close ties with the UK proved just this. His words triggered market optimism about the potential for a positive Brexit deal and caused the pound to move higher.

The referendum result weakened the pound, which has actually boosted international demand for UK commercial real estate. If the pound strengthens over the longer term, this could curb this demand and pose a risk to the outlook.

International investors accounted for over 70 per cent of purchases in the second quarter of 2018, according to Cushman & Wakefield – so this would be a significant loss.

Will uncertainty persist?

Brexit uncertainty has dragged on longer than most hoped and expected. If this continues, we could see increased relocations for some financial services.

Initial scaremongering of a mass exodus from the UK is likely unfounded, but continued uncertainty or a hard Brexit could change the picture.

Brexit uncertainty is also dragging on UK GDP. If it markedly lowers the outlook, total returns from UK commercial real estate are likely to suffer.

While we’re not as doom and gloom in our outlook on Brexit as many, it should be factored into investment considerations at the current juncture.

These risks are present but should not deter investment altogether.

Looking ahead, it is likely that rental income will offer the most potential in returns for investors in commercial real estate.

Since the previous capital peak for the sector, prior to the 2007 financial crash, commercial has delivered an average annual total return of nine per cent for investors. This can be crudely broken down into the return derived from the rental income and the growth in capital value of the property itself.

In our view, capital growth is unlikely to contribute markedly to the total return for investors in commercial real estate in the foreseeable future. It is the rental income which investors should focus on.

For investors in the current environment, then, it would be prudent to focus on quality assets and sound leases when investing in the sector.

Commercial real estate continues to offer some opportunity for long-term investors, yet downside risks must be noted.

Data may have led to many yawns in recent months, but we should not take the constants for granted. Keeping an eye on risks will help avoid any nasty surprises.

Source: City A.M.

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Boom time for commercial property sectors in Glasgow and Edinburgh

Glasgow has just witnessed a record quarter for office deals, with city centre occupier take-up exceeding one million sq ft for the year to date, according to data from JLL.

Thanks in large part to Barclays, which re-defines the ‘city centre’ parameters to cross the river Clyde, total take-up across Glasgow’s city centre reached 614,466 sq ft between July and September, spread across 31 deals.

Glasgow’s record quarter for office transactions brings the city centre’s total take-up for the year to date to 1,192,689 sq ft, with three months of the year still remaining. By marked contrast, office occupier take-up for 2017 totalled 627,313 sq ft.

In the largest deal of the quarter, and the year so far, Barclays took a 470,000 sq ft pre-let at Buchanan Wharf. Other notable deals in the city include 60,000 sq ft take-up at 123 St Vincent Street, and Glasgow School of Art and CXP Limited both signing new deals for more than 10,000 sq ft of city centre space.

In the first six months of 2018, take-up of city centre office space amounted to 578,223 sq ft, which was already boosted by notable major pre-let activity to the HMRC at Atlantic Square, and Clydesdale Bank’s 110,955 sq ft pre-let at 177 Bothwell Street. JLL have been involved in four of the top five largest deals in 2018 to date, and almost a third of all transactions this quarter.

According to JLL, Glasgow’s office market is continuing to attract activity and proving itself to be a desirable location for business to operate.

Alistair Reid, director at JLL, said: “With total take-up already exceeding 1 million sq ft, we anticipate that 2018 will be the best year for office take-up in Glasgow in recorded history.

“From larger corporates and government departments to SMEs and fintech firms, requirements and new enquiries for city centre space remain strong. It’s inevitable that this demand will continue to impact supply, but with three new speculative developments in the offing, there is at least a pipeline of new build supply further down the line.”

Along the M8, JLL is reporting that Edinburgh’s commercial property market is maintaining its strong performance for office occupier take-up, transacting over 300,000 sq ft of office space during the last three months.

According to JLL, a strong third quarter ensured that Edinburgh has already broken the annual 10-year average, following a record-breaking 2017 in which 1,100,000 sq ft was transacted.

Total take-up in Edinburgh reached 301,713 sq ft between July and October, an increase of approximately 30% year-on-year, spread across 49 deals.

The largest occupier deals saw Royal London secure 47,000 sq ft at 22 Haymarket Yards, while Brodies pre-let 43,000 sq ft and Pinsent Masons pre-let 27,000 sq ft at Capital Square.

Despite the prospect of another bumper year for the capital’s office market, grade A availability and the pipeline of new office space remain a major problem.

Craig Watson, director at JLL said: “The rapid pre-letting of new stock coming onto the market, such as the Capital Square development, underlines the limited availability of prime Grade A stock in the city centre. There simply isn’t enough in the short-term.”

Source: The National