The general vacancy rate for the A and B class in Bucharest reached 13.3 pct, registering a decrease of 340 pct. compared to the value registered in the beginning of 2014.
Currently in Bucharest there are 288,000 sq. m of vacant offices, more than 35 pct. of them being situated in Pipera area. However the difference between Pipera South and Pipera North remains significant.
The lowest vacancies are registered in the Central Business District (Victoriei – Aviatorilor) – 5 pct., followed by Pipera South and Western zone, both having 7 pct vacancy rate.
The area Barbu Vacarescu – Floreasca, with an approx. stock of 280,000 sq. m, registers in the end of the year a vacancy rate of 11 pct.
"The average absorption rate each trimester of last year was 50,000 sq. m, which confirms that in 2014 the office request has significantly increased. As a result, the vacancy rate reached the lowest level in the last six years. Even if the office market in Bucharest continues to be mainly a tenants ‘market, it is for the first time when the perspectives for a more balanced market are foreseen. For this to happen, it is important that the level of new spaces deliveries to be in concordance with the level of the request ", said Madalina Cojocaru, head of Office Department, DTZ Echinox.
12 office buildings delivered last year
The modern office stock in Bucharest reached in the end of 2014 the milestone of 2,160,000 sq. m. compared to 2013, the stock increased with 6 pct. Last year 12 office buildings were delivered, with the total rentable area of 117,000 sq. m.
The projects completed last year include Green Gate, AFI Business Park II & III, Green Court – A, Ethos House and Hermes Business Campus – first building.
For 2015 the level of deliveries is expected to be higher with 30 pct. Overall there are scheduled for completion 154,000 sq. m, approx. 28 pct. of this area being pre-rented. Similar to 2014, most of the building in construction will be delivered in the Central-Northern area (Barbu Vacarescu – Floreasca) and in the Western zone.
The request, almost 40 pct. higher than in 2013
Total transaction activity (request and renegotiations) was 298,000 sq. m. the request exceeded 221,000 sq. m, being 38 pct. higher than in 2013. The relocations inside modern stock totaled 108,000 sq. m, with 61 pct pre-renting transactions. The relocations from villas and C class offices totaled 40,000 sq. m.
The volume of the expansions and new operations opened both by existing tenants and new companies entered on the market, totaled 74,000 sq. m, 15 pct being pre-rental transactions. Most of the request was registered in the Central Northern zone 46 pct, followed by Pipera South – 24 pct, and the Western zone – 13 pct.
In 2014, the new request, represented by expansions, relocations from villas and C class offices to modern office spaces and the new operations, opened both by existing tenants and new companies entered on the market totaled over 50 pct. of the overall request registered in Bucharest, being 60 pct. higher than in 2013.
"Taking into consideration the fact that Bucharest is the most developed office market in Romania and that at the level of CEE the city continues to be attractive from the point of view the total occupancy costs and of the labour productivity, we estimate that the percent of the new request will continue to represent also this year a significant part of the transaction activity", Madalina Cojocaru added.
Tenants have chosen the expansion instead of relocation
Considering the activity of renegotiation and renewal of the contractual terms, this was 23 pct lower than in 2013. Overall, the option to remain in the current building was preferred by the tenants having the option to expand and being completely pleased with the current location. Most of the renegotiation contracts were registered in the Central Northern area, CBD and downtown Bucharest.
The pre-renting transactions were the largest from the point of view of the area. Considering that a consistent pre-rental transaction was registered each quarter of last year, 2014 becomes a reference year from the point of view of the pre-rental activity.
The prime rent was stable in the first three quarters of the year, registering a slight increase of EUR 0.5 in 4Q. In the end f 2014, the prime rent is EUR 18.5/sq. m/ month. In CDB the level of rent for A class offices situates between EUR 15 and EUR 17/sq. m/month. In semi-central locations, the rents situate between EUR 12 and EUR 15/ sq. m/month and in the peripheral areas the rent for A class offices vary between EUR 9 to EUR 12 /sq. m /month. (source: dailybusiness.ro)