Commercial Property Vacancy Rates Move Closer Together

Vacancy Rates are much closer nowTHE NEAR-ZERO Office vacancy rates enjoyed by the mining cities of Brisbane and Perth pre-GFC … now seem to have come back into line with the other capital Cities.

The latest survey released by the Property Council of Australia (PCA) displays a much more even spread for Offces vacancies around the country.

The cooling of the mining sector, coupled with the Queensland floods, has caused a number of key players to rethink their Office space requirements. [Read more…]

Your Timing Within The Commercial Property Cycle

The traditional Investment Clock for SharesIF YOU have invested in the share market, you would most likely be familiar with the so-called “Investment Clock” — which attempts to show how the economic cycle influences equities.

In essence, an over-heated economy is followed by rising interest rates and falling share prices. Then, as the economy declines interest rates start to fall and share prices rise again.

Some analysts have tried to devise a similar “clock” for Commercial property. But unfortunately, the results have generally not been useful. [Read more…]

Industrial Property Is Clearly Holding Its Own

Industrial Rentals set to rise, and Selling Yields will begin to firm.Vacancy rates for Industrial property have fallen dramatically over the past year — declining by 39% on average, across the country.

This is mainly the result of strong demand for warehousing, following the high Australian dollar.

Plus, there has only been a modest amount of new construction. And that means you should see rentals improve and selling yields start to firm. [Read more…]

Commercial Property: The Suburban Office Market

The Suburban Office market is currently your best choiceRIGHT NOW, the Sydney suburban market is trending sideways. And that’s rather good news, because the general consensus was it was about to slump.

While its vacancy rate sits at 9.6%, there is little new space coming onto the market over the next couple of years. [Read more…]

National Office Market Shows Steady Improvement

LAST WEEK, the Property Council of Australia released its Office Space survey, for the 6 months to January 2012. And this will have some interesting implications for the Commercial property market.

National Vacancy Rates have fallen over the past 6 monthsAcross the 26 markets depicted in this chart … demand was up 20% up and supply 30% down, on the 20-year average for the six-monthly period.

As you can see, total vacancies fell from 9.0% to 7.9% — the lowest since January 2009. And perhaps a quick summary of the CBD Office markets would be worthwhile. [Read more…]

Commercial Property: What Makes for a Balanced Office Market?

EVERY capital city has both a CBD and suburban Office market. And as you can appreciate, keeping tabs on all the various suburban markets is almost an impossible task for most investors.

But generally speaking, the health (or otherwise) of the CBD Office markets within each capital city will provide you with a fairly good gauge of the overall Office scene around Australia.

Accordingly, this graph will provide you with a clear picture of what has occurred over the past 4 years.

As a rule of thumb, Office markets are said to the “in balance”, when their Vacancy Rate lies between 5% and 7%. [Read more…]

Lack of Construction Underpins
Demand for Office Space

Available Full CBD Office Floors are quickly vanishingThe Commercial property market is driven mainly by supply and demand — especially Offices.

And therefore, with …

  • falling vacancies,
  • positive net absorption and
  • few new projects in the pipeline …

… this means a looming shortage of Office space around Australia — with rentals poised to rise sharply. [Read more…]

Commercial Property Looking Forward

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Is there a Future for Offices?

The last couple of articles have talked about all the misplaced doom and the gloom.

Plus, you also covered the various reasons why Australia overall is well placed to flourish (and not just survive) the current global distress.

A recent report on the Australian Office scene (by Morgan Stanley property research) would only tend to confirm that view. Their only concern would be the Sydney market, due to its heavy exposure to the financial sector. [Read more…]

Suburban Offices Set to Surge

Over the past few weeks, you have been reading articles about the various Office markets around Australia.

As such, you would now be aware of how each capital City compares, in relation to its … Vacancy rates … Rental levels … and expected Capital growth.

 You can expect definite Rental Growth in the city fringe.However, most of that commentary has been focused upon CBD Offices. And as a result, people have been enquiring about just how the Suburban Office markets are also likely to perform, over the next few years.

Clearly, a rent differential exists between the City and Suburban Office markets. And obviously, that rental gap will also vary, as you move around Australia. [Read more…]

Asian Thrust will Prove Good for
Australian Commercial Property


Following the global financial crisis, the extent of trade imbalances has eased somewhat between Advanced Western economies and the Emerging Asian economies.

The gap between China’s huge current-account surpluses and America is out-of-control deficits may have temporarily narrowed. But the IMF believes the massive disparity will return, as world economic activity improves.

The ups and downs of exchange rates and capital movements are seen by the US and the Western economies as a method of ensuring a proper allocation of resources.

Whereas, it seems Asian countries view exchange rate movements as an annoying distraction from controlled expansion of their “home” economies. And amassing foreign currencies is seen as the best protection against a re-occurrence of the 1997 Asian financial crisis.

How will this affect Commercial Property Investment?

China’s stated goal of 7% growth over the next five years (plus its dependence upon coal, iron ore, LNG and nickel) will provide enormous economic upside for Australia.

On this basis, China’s contribution to global economic output will rival that of the European Union within five years; and even the US, within the next 10 years.

While Australia’s mining boom may help to create a “two-speed economy” … the flow-through benefits will be felt by everyone — to a greater or lesser extent.

Clearly, the growing mining (and mining-related) sector will need to be physically accommodated.

Similarly, the support services and businesses like … accountants, lawyers and the merchant bankers … will all need to engage more staff. And that means we’ll need to construct more office buildings to house them.

Bottom Line: Until we do that (which can take between 3 to 5 years), rentals for both CBD and suburban Office space will continue to escalate those capital cities where the vacancy rates currently sit at around 7%, or below.

Therefore, right now, that means you should be looking to snap up something in Melbourne, Sydney or Perth. And then, ride the current growth cycle through to 2018.

 

Retail Reality

Wallet Workout
As this graph shows, there has been a strong long-term relationship between unemployment and retail vacancies.

And were you to base your Investment decisions on this measure alone, you could be forgiven for assuming there will be a healthy couple of years ahead of the retail sector as a whole.
[Read more…]