UK Commercial Property
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Can urban logistics fill the void in cities?

The acceleration of structural shifts is likely to result in some conversion of retail and to a lesser extent office space to urban logistics use. However, we think these conversions will be relatively limited given the significant shortfall in values between existing uses and industrial.
Prohad Khan Property Economist
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UK Commercial Property Chart Book

Annual property returns hit a seven-year high

Commercial property ended last year strongly. Annual rental growth climbed to a five-year high, while annual total returns crossed the 20% level. This was largely the result of dynamism in industrial, though all sectors saw positive annual returns, even retail. But we think it will be a struggle to repeat this stellar performance in 2022, as economic headwinds and structural changes weigh on rental growth and the scope for further yield reductions reduces. As a result, we expect returns to be significantly lower in 2022.

21 January 2022

UK Commercial Property Update

Industrial yield falls set to slow

The industrial sector had its best year in over three decades in 2021 as demand soared and supply struggled to keep up. Although we expect the sector to perform well again this year, we don’t think that yields can continue to fall at the rate seen in 2021.

20 January 2022

UK Commercial Property Update

Which assets can provide the best inflation protection?

Recent data have reinforced concerns about inflation risks in the UK. We remain of the view that property investments provide only limited long-term protection against higher prices, but of the individual asset types, we think industrial and residential are best placed to weather any surge. In view of the wider interest, we are also sending this UK Commercial Property Update to clients of our UK Housing Service.

14 January 2022

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UK Commercial Property Update

South East office rents still have further to fall

Although we expect the economic outlook will continue to improve, we think that South East office rents will still edge lower this year. What’s more, we don’t expect much of a rebound in 2022, as a shift to remote working will continue to weigh on demand.

7 July 2021

UK Commercial Property Data Response

Lending to commercial property (May.)

After falling sharply in April, net lending rose in May. We think this can be explained by the extension of payment holidays rather than an increase in new loans. Further ahead, we expect a weak recovery in investment activity and, as the economic recovery gathers pace, we think banks will be less willing to grant further forbearance, so net lending will turn negative again.

29 June 2021

UK Commercial Property Update

Weak starts to limit construction after 2021

We think that delayed Central London office projects and new industrial starts will drive commercial construction output this year. But once the backlog of delayed projects has been exhausted, we think structural factors and high costs will deter developers from building new projects further out.

24 June 2021
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