The first quarter of 2014 saw nearly 170,000 sq ft of office deals in the North East with the bulk of the transactions completed being out-of-town.
Compared to the same period a year ago the figures are down but, as Tony Wordsworth, director, National Markets, Offices, GVA explained, the figures then were exceptional representing nearly a 50% increase at the time.
“The very nature of statistics is that they act as a general steer to what is going on in the market. With 50,074 sq ft taken up in NewcastleGateshead city centre, an increase on the same period in 2013 (44,124 sq ft), there is certainly activity and even though out-of-town take-up at 117,710 sq ft is down on a year ago (263,318 sq ft), the 28 deals illustrates activity,” said Wordsworth.
The statistics, a detailed analysis of sector activity, are collated by the Offices Group represented by the region’s main office agents - BNP Paribas Real Estate, Bradley Hall, DTZ, Gavin Black & Partners, GVA, Knight Frank, Lambert Smith Hampton, Naylors Chartered Surveyors, Sanderson Weatherall and Storeys Edward Symmons.
Aidan Baker, director, office agency, BNP Paribas Real Estate, said the first quarter shows a variety of activity across most locations: “There is a wide spread of out-of-town deals from Cramlington to Stockton. The market continues to be dominated with smaller transactions beneath 3,500 sq ft while the major transactions in the first quarter were owner occupiers acquiring space.”
In the city centre, the largest letting was 28,300 sq ft at Baltic Place on confidential terms. “This large letting continues to cause a reduction in city centre availability and little pipeline of new space,” added Wordsworth.