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Anyone looking to locate their office in Westminster at the moment must ensure that they have deep pockets – even deeper than would have been needed in 2008. In 2012 Westminster office space prices increased to an extent that the average price exceeded those when, in real estate terms, London was booming.
One way – aside from square footage – of measuring the cost of office space is “per workstation”. The increase seen in prices, even between 2011 and 2012, is estimated to be around £120 per workstation (bringing the cost in this particular area to around £670 per workstation).
The increase may have some people – businesses, landlords, investors, analysts – scratching their heads given that there is reported to have been a 7% decrease in the number of companies securing space in Westminster. Figures show, in addition, that these companies are requiring less space, perhaps due to the tightening of belts and consequently few staff. The average number of workstations per business in 2012 was six, one lower than in 2011.
Sally Brough, Associate Director at Morgan Pryce, suggests, “We have seen that requirements from some businesses are becoming stricter, with quality of office space top of their list. This could account for the increase in price: the quality in the area is high and the price reflects this.”
She notes in particular that, “Westminster will always be a prestigious place for a business to be based as it is one of the most recognisable areas of the capital. It is inevitable that the kind of office space found here will be some of the best in the city.”
Morgan Pryce is a specialist tenant acquisition agent with offices in Oxford Circus and the City. Morgan Pryce specialises in search, negotiation and project management and works exclusively for tenants.