Firms shun owner-occupation in City

Most of the Big Five’s offices in London may be outside of the City but business and professional services firms occupy 18.9% of core properties and 19.2% of fringe properties, the survey by Development Securities found.

However most of the property is rented – the firms own just 0.3% of the stock, a figure that is actually in decline.

Insurers on the other hand own 31.5% of the total space.

With owner-occupation now accounting for 12% of core stock and 14% of fringe space, Development Securities said some City-dwellers could benefit.

‘Dampened occupational demand could push down rents, depressing investment values and threatening loan portfolios – with the poor performance of real estate equity and debt further depressing financial markets,’ the report concluded.

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