By Maximilian Clarke
The cost of office space to let in Birmingham has fallen, with the average price of a single desk at one of the city’s serviced offices decreasing from £264 per month in 2010 to £190 per month in 2011.
Based on the average prices (January-September 2010 vs. 2011) recorded by officebroker.com, the UK’s leading independent online office search & consultancy service, it would appear that businesses entering serviced offices during this nine month period were paying on average £74 per month less that during the same period of 2010.
Despite knee-jerk assumptions that these lower prices are the result of price led competition amongst providers, additional data from the office search specialist could suggest otherwise.
According to the City Focus: Birmingham Q3 2011, a quarterly publication which tracks the trends and changes across the City’s serviced office market, the lower prices could have been the result of higher volume deals being completed by local office providers.
While in 2010 businesses entering flexible office space were presented as having a requirement of just over 3 workstations each, in 2011 the average amount of office space required had more than doubled to nearly 7 workstations.
“Larger occupiers will result in lower rates being negotiated with providers” explained a spokesperson for officebroker.com.
“The larger businesses with larger requirements, which were largely absent in 2010, would appear to have had an impact on the pricing levels being recorded across the city centre. And while the individual number of firms moving into serviced space has fallen, the amount of physical space taken has increased by 85%.”
Looking forward to the remainder of 2011, the period of September — December historically delivers an upturn in both enquiries and the number of businesses moving into Birmingham’s serviced offices after a summer slowdown.
Shown in the year-on-year data contained within the report, this potential increase could lead to higher prices as supply begins to come under greater pressure.
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