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Businesses in search of office space are being told to consider searching outside of London as rents spiral thanks to a combination of growing demand and a shortage of commercial property. Searching out a building with an adequate amount of office space outside of London may now be far more cost effective for the great majority of businesses, at least according to the British Council for Offices (BCO) Urban Group.
Philip Papenfus, a member of the Council, believes that as well as the high cost of rent for office space in Central London, seeking commercial property elsewhere can also be more cost effective for other reasons, such as rating liabilities and service charges, which are likewise far more likely to be cheaper in price than in London itself. Papenfus acknowledges that some businesses may not be able to make such a move, being tied to London by their very nature, but says that those that can function with office space being outside of the city should seriously consider implementing such a shift. “I have met with at least two to three occupiers in the last few weeks who have been saying that they are very likely to be moving non-essential staff out to cheaper locations like the Heathrow’s (or) Gatwick’s of this world,” he notes.
The rising cost of office space has led the Council to offer other cost saving advice of late, including how to reduce the use of energy in office buildings by switching off computers and lights during the evening.
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