According to the latest Dublin Office Market View released by CBRE the Dublin office market saw relatively healthy letting activity in Q4 2009. A total of 19,812m2 of lettings were signed in the capital during the last three months of the year. This brought annual take-up in the Irish capital for 2009 to 78,230m2, which, given the severe contraction in the Irish economy, is not an unhealthy level. Although, many believe that there is virtually no transactional activity occurring in the office sector, letting activity continues in the Irish capital, albeit below trend, with large numbers of smaller deals characterising the market in 2009. There were 185 lettings concluded in the Dublin market last year. 53 lettings signed in Q4 2009 alone. 38 of these were lettings extending to less than 465m2 in size, which between them accounted for 34% of overall take-up in the city in the quarter.
Key points of the report include:
- While office take-up in Dublin during Q4 2009 was down on a quarterly basis at 19,812m2, letting activity for the year as a whole proved relatively healthy given the severity of the ongoing recession
- The office development pipeline will see further falls in completions in 2010 and no new office buildings are due to complete in 2011 or 2012
- Vacancy in the Dublin office market continued to rise, reaching 23% in Q4, but the pace of growth in availability and vacancy appears to have slowed from earlier in the year
- A significant proportion of vacant space in the city centre is not made up of “empty office blocks”, but rather is comprised of a large portion of floors and parts-of-floors of office buildings which are being offered to let
- There were no office investment transactions signed in Q4
- Prime headline office rents appear to be stabilising at current levels, having declined 45% from peak.