Positive signs after ‘subdued summer’ for city office market

One of the office suites within Norfolk House
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Office agents are expecting a “positive end to the year” after a “subdued summer”.

Data collated by the Birmingham Office Market Forum (BOMF) showed there were 28 deals for office space totalling 158,935 sq ft in the city during the three months to September.

The quarter was never going to compare with the same period a year ago, which saw the 240,000 sq ft deal by HMRC for 3 Arena Central boost the total above 400,000 sq ft. However the performance was slightly ahead of the average over the previous five years.

In Q3 the largest individual deal was again from Government, for 36,484 sq ft at Norfolk House, while there were five other deals above 10,000 sq ft.

The absence of big deals is suppressing the take-up figures for 2018 – the largest deal so far in 2018 was WSP taking 46,100 sq ft in The Mailbox.

The year-to-date total of 477,365 sq ft is the third-lowest of the last decade, although there are reasons to be optimistic.

A statement from Birmingham Office Market Forum said: “Following a subdued summer holiday period, enquiry levels have since picked up significantly across all sectors with strong viewing activity to match.

“That all bodes well for a positive end to the year in the Birmingham office leasing market.”

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