Office Availability In London Soars To 15-year High
UNITED KINGDOM – The available office space in central London hit its highest rate in 15 years, indicating that the shift to remote work due to the COVID-19 pandemic has significantly impacted demand for commercial property, reported Bloomberg on Monday evening (22 August, SGT).
Based on the latest statistics from CoStar, office availability in London reached nearly 31 million sq ft in August 2022. That’s a 51 percent surge from the 20 million sq ft recorded at the end of 2019.
The latest figure is equivalent to around 60 Gherkin skyscrapers. The last time there was such a huge amount of vacant office space, the real estate values of office buildings fell sharply. In turn, this caused billions in commercial property loans to go underwater.
Aside from that, the amount of available office space in London has continued to increase in 2022, albeit at a slower pace than in the preceding two years, according to data from CoStar.
The high office availability in the capital is likely to worry executives who have been urging staff to return to their workplaces.
Based on a poll conducted by consultancy Advanced Workplace Associates, currently less than 50 percent of employees in the UK’s banking industry report to the office on an average day, while less than 20 percent of staff from the insurance sector do so.