Expert View: Commercial business is booming, says Matthew Bowen of Aitchison Raffety

Matthew Bowen

Matthew Bowen - Credit: Archant

Every year it feels like it has been an exceptionally quiet summer holiday period but there was certainly a significant reduction in enquiries and movement for commercial properties this time.

Typically the quiet period extends into mid-September and then reverts back to normal. This has been evident this year and currently enquiry levels are as high as they have ever been.

The issue currently though is there continues to be a real shortage of available premises for people to take. This is the case for offices, industrial and retail with even those that are vacant already being under offer.

The lack of stock is even more restricted for properties which are for sale. Owner occupiers are as keen as ever to buy but with the tax changes to residential buy-to-lets, investors are focussing more on commercial opportunities which give a greater level of return.

Conversely, less freeholds are available as owners are more able to let their properties if they hold them as an investment and know they can’t switch to other investments which give a greater return. Owner occupiers are also restricted in selling as they cant find alternative premises to buy.

All round it’s interesting times but it remains the case that people need to register their requirements as early as possible and instructing an agent like Aitchison Raffety to acquire properties on their behalf is becoming more and more vital. Obviously we are always happy to speak with people about the current situation and what can be done to navigate it.

Matthew Bowen, Aitchison Raffety, 01727 843232