Office news latest 29th April 2013

More than 1m sq ft of offices are under offer in the South East, the highest recorded total in more than a decade, while take-up is at its strongest for the first quarter for five years, reports CBRE.

In an upbeat Q1 report for the key office region, CBRE reports that total floorspace under offer is 1,002,958 sq ft, the highest recorded since the fourth quarter of 2000, suggesting a “very strong second and third quarter take-up”. Elsewhere all of the key indicators for the region are pointing upwards.

Q1 take-up, at 716,081 sq ft, is 20% above the five-year average for this time of year. The figure represents an increase of 9% over the previous quarter and is a substantial rise of 30% over the same period last year and is the strongest first quarter total take-up since 2008.

Total available supply of 15.8m sq ft is down 2% over the same period last year while ready-to-occupy vacancy rate across the South East is 7.9%, the first time it has fallen below 8% since 2008. CBRE said that once again the Thames Valley submarket outperformed the M25 areas with 378,142 sq ft of deals exchanged. However, the M25 South sub-market witnessed the strongest above-average quarter, with 196,895 sq ft of recorded take-up in Q1, 46% more than the five-year average for this time of year and 85% over the same period one year ago.

New, Grade A stock (together with developments within 12 months of completion), continues to be a popular destination for occupiers and available supply has subsequently fallen 16% in 12 months to 3.25m sq ft. Luke Hacking, director, national office agency, CBRE, said: "Could this be the time that the tables turn in favour of the landlord? Certainly it is geographically specific, but we are seeing examples of 50,000 sq ft-plus requirements having increasingly limited options because of supply constraints in some locations."