Discussing Manchester's commercial property market | Davis Blank Furniss

Manchester and its surrounding areas continue to be viewed as the second city after London and the commercial property market reflects this. Construction does appear to be slowing – with fewer developments due to complete than occurred in 2011/2012 – and most major projects seem to be driven by the public sector and the various university expansion programmes.

However, on a positive note, commercial office leases and – in particular – Grade A office space continues to be attractive with rents reaching around £30 per square foot. With no new Grade A space expected in 2013, rents should – in theory – again remain high and may even rise slightly. Although headline rents at the top end remain buoyant, there are still some extremely attractive incentives available to potential tenants such as long rent free periods, contributions to fit out costs and attractive break options.

Unfortunately, the “second tier” office rental market it not so buoyant with the take up of new leases being much slower and many refurbished properties are remaining on the market for some considerable time. As with Grade A spaces, there are some great incentives available and these are mainly due to landlords finding it difficult to complete deals as tenants have a wide choice and so are considering their options right up to the last moment of signing.

In terms of new tenants, the main growth sectors are coming from several key business sectors including; professional services, banking and finance. Several high profile London firms have opened offices in Manchester over the last 24 months and this trend will hopefully continue. The creative and digital industries should also help achieve some growth in the commercial property sector particularly in areas such as the Northern Quarter, Ancoats and of course Media City.

Finance still appears to be the main barrier to new construction projects as well as to further investment in both the city and wider region’s commercial property stock. Funding needs to be made available at competitive rates with funders having more realistic expectations around the additional security being offered by developers. I also believe that overseas investment will be more important than ever in 2013 and beyond with key markets such as China, Brazil and India needing to be further explored; this is particularly in relation to the creative and digital sectors. Hotel construction seems to be one area where there is further potential growth for 2013 too.


Read what our clients have to say...

View All

Excellent experience start to finish – always very responsive to any queries and the turnaround on the property I was buying was very quick, even in the busy time leading up to stamp duty deadline. Jenny was always very helpful and went above and beyond to close on a short timescale.

Ben Armitage

“Very approachable, practical solutions to problems, but most of all very responsive which I personally think is very important because if you need help, you need it quickly, or at least to know someone is looking at it for you”.

Joanne Rowe, Finance Director, Greater Manchester Chamber

“Always able to contact, very approachable, friendly and professional”

Nives Feely, JAM Recruitment

“I believe I have been able to establish a professional working relationship with everyone I have come into contact. Importantly, I sense the relationships which have been established give me the confidence that I can make contact with Davis Blank Furniss at any time and on any matter. I would also like to express my thanks to the very impressive “gatekeepers” who work in reception, not only for making me very welcome, but also for their professionalism”

Bill Pryke, CEO, Chartered Institution of Civil Engineering Surveyors

“Thank you for your efficient and friendly help throughout this process. We have had it easy but your approach has been part of that”.

Robert Amsbury (Conveyancing Client)

“I would like to take this opportunity to thank you personally for the ongoing support and assistance the firm has offered to our parents over the years. I hope also that we may be able to call on you if necessary in the future.”

Valerie Fisher (Probate Client)

“Jo always provides great service, understands our needs and delivers on her promises. Our needs are relatively simple but the complexity arises out of the volume of work and short time frames, Jo always delivers.”

Peter Fernandez, Corporate Director at Royal Bank of Scotland

“A big thank you to all who dealt with my wife’s claim… We would not hesitate to recommend Davis Blank Furniss to anyone that may be in a situation like we have been…”

Anon (Personal Injury client)

“Before putting my case in Kirsty (Morbey)’s capable hands I’ve met a couple of other solicitors. None of them listen to me as intently as Kirsty and showed me as much empathy and understanding as she did. Simultaneously she was able to look at my case from legal perspective, explain all the options and follow each of our meetings with written summary of the discussed matters (in timely manner). Her advice was invaluable and led me to successfully ending the case matter (hopeful for good). I’m forever grateful for he work and would definitely recommend her to anyone looking for reliable, knowledgeable and committed solicitor”.

Anon (Family client)
5 star service

Our Manchester office is rated 5 stars on Google