Confidence in commercial property development at three year low

New Savills survey shows confidence at lowest since April 2013

Confidence in the UK’s commercial property development market is at its lowest since April 2013, stoking fears that the European referendum is causing uncertainty among developers.

Despite a bounce-back from a 35-month low of 4.5pc growth in December to 8.4pc in January, pointing to a faster rate of expansion in activity, confidence among commercial developers waned.

Figures released by Savills showed a lack of new planning consents were being granted, pointing to developer hesitance amid wider geopolitical turmoil.

Savills researcher Kevin Mofid said: “This could be that investors and developers are delaying capital expenditure decisions until after the European referendum and London mayoral elections.”

However, where commercial activity is anticipated to increase in the coming three months, developers reported higher enquiries from potential clients.

Private new build housing was the sector with the quickest rise in activity last month, although its rate of expansion slowed to a 32-month low.

January data also pointed to a renewed slowdown in output growth across the UK construction sector, signalling the weakest rate of expansion since April 2015.


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