Sydney CBD office vacancies still lowest in Australia

Sydney CBD office vacancies still lowest in Australia
Sydney CBD office vacancies still lowest in Australia

The Sydney city centre continues to boast the lowest office vacancy rate of any CBD in Australia with strong demand coupled with limited net supply lowering vacancies to just 6.3%, says Ray White Commercial.

Ray White commercial office leasing director, Anthony Harris, said the total Sydney CBD office market has delivered tremendous results with low vacancies and high tenant demand translating into improved rental growth.

“Currently the total vacancy rate is 6.3% including a small sublease factor of 0.4%,” Mr Harris said.

“The Sydney CBD office market currently has 311,678 sqm vacant, which has shown a strong absorption rate of 60,405 sqm for the six months to July, 2015. This is the third consecutive six month period of net absorption of more than 50,000 sqm.

“Coupled with net supply over the last 18 months of just 5,485 sqm, this highlights the rebound in white collar employment and business confidence. Technology continues to be a driving force for new tenancies within the CBD, while finance and professional services have also increased their footprint on the city.

“The greatest demand has come from the Core and Midtown precincts which yielded a 36,926 sqm and 18,061 sqm respectively increase in occupied stock over the last six months.”

But Mr Harris said high supply projections over the next few years could dampen the current positive results.

“While the net supply position has aided in the reduction of the overall vacancy rate, this trend is about to change with the anticipated completion of 670,000 sqm of new office stock over the next three years,” he said.

“Although withdrawal of stock will continue for refurbishment, this supply will subsequently come back on line with only limited stock being removed completely from the office count.

“The most anticipated completions are International Towers with the first completion (Tower 2) due in early 2016 (87,500 sqm) with the remainder of the office properties on this site expected to be completed by mid-2017, adding 179,000 sqm.”

Ray White commercial office leasing director, Jeremy Piggin, said the Sydney CBD has been in a period of stability in rents since 2010.

“Over the last two years there was a slight pick-up in the face rents,” he said.

“The prime market has shown a greater increase given the tight vacancy environment and for the first time since the GFC period incentives have started to show greater downward momentum, now averaging in the 25-30 per cent range.

“This has had a positive effect on the effective rental position which has recorded growth over the past year of 9.4 per cent in the prime market.

“However, for this end of the market there is a greater emphasis by businesses to provide greater wellbeing features for their staff. Those properties which offer access to better quality services will continue to be highly sought after.”

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