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London Midtown Office & Retail Markets

Our extensive research provides a detailed and often unique insight into office and retail markets in London Midtown. In conjunction with Union Street Partners, we also focus on the London South Bank commercial property market.

In Midtown, we track quarterly take-up, availability, future supply and investment activity in WC1, WC2, part EC1 and part EC4 for two property cycles. Our research is backed by the insights of our highly experienced property professionals and is considered among the most reliable and focused for this market.

Our quarterly reports are published alongside our annual 'Centre of London' research, which monitors the area running from the top of Midtown’s northern border at King’s Cross through to the South Bank, and our bi-annual Midtown Retail Bulletin, which provides a detailed insight into the exciting retail and leisure changes in this continually evolving market.

Latest Research

The London Midtown Office & Retail Markets Q1 2018

A decline in availability in London’s Midtown in the first quarter of 2018 sent the vacancy rate down to 3.8%.  After last year’s strong level of office take-up, sustained occupier demand faces the lowest level of speculative space under construction in the past five years.

The total supply of available space shrank by 15% between Q4 last year and the end of March this year.  Although leasing activity was down by around a third quarter-on-quarter, the volume of second-hand space that was absorbed during the first three months of the year demonstrates the breadth and depth of demand across the Midtown office market.

The professional services sector was the most active, accounting for 30% of named take-up.  Q1 was dominated by second-hand take-up, approximately 65% of the total space let during the quarter.  The “normal” market conclusion to draw would be that this sector is set for rental growth but Farebrother is not seeing this; pricing remains keen with the anticipation of increasing amounts of tenant stock influencing negotiations.

It is anticipated that the continued high demand for new and refurbished space and lack of any meaningful pipeline will sustain future strong rental performance at the top end of the market. Occupier demand will be further underpinned by the opening of the Elizabeth Line and the connectivity transformation that it will bring, particularly around Farringdon.

The London Midtown Office & Retail Markets Q1 research explores our key findings for the Midtown market in more detail, examining leasing, investment turnover and future supply for the rest of 2018

The Centre of London Report 2017-18

Performance across all indices exceeded expectations, despite the shadow of Brexit and general market uncertainty looming.

OCCUPIER MARKET recorded the second highest level of take-up over the past 10 years

INVESTMENT MARKET was buoyant, with the Centre of London turnover significantly surpassing the long-term trend

RETAIL & LEISURE fared its challenges well, with operators increasingly focusing on delivering high-quality space throughout the Centre of London

This report incorporates detailed transactional data and comprehensive commentary on the performance of the Centre of London Leasing, Development, Investment and Retail markets during 2017, together with our views on the outlook for 2018 and beyond. 

Previous Research

Research Seminars

Farebrother regularly contribute to and host events, receptions, presentations and round table discussions focused on the Centre of London for investors, developers, occupiers and managers. Please contact Adrienne Kearney for further details.