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Q3 2023 UK RETAIL WAREHOUSE VACANCY RATES HAVE RISEN

“Although the vacancy rate has risen in the last quarter we are of the belief that this is a temporary blip and when we look at Q4 2023 and Q1 2024 figures we’ll see the trend of very low vacancy rates continue. The market is in short supply of quality retail warehousing in good locations and we expect the majority of the Wilko units will be snapped up by retailers with aggressive roll out plans looking to take advantage of these spaces made available”


Retail warehousing vacancy rates in the UK have risen for the first time in over 2 years, now at 5.7% at the end of Q3 2023 according to the latest research by Trevor Wood Associates (TWA), compared to 5.4% at Q2 and 5.8% at Q1 2023.


The major contributor to the rise is the administration and closure of Wilko in September 2023 which led to nearly 0.90 million square feet of retail warehouse space becoming vacant.


This figure should be treated with some caution as a number of these units are under offer and B & M have confirmed they shall be opening in the units they’ve purchased steadily over the next 12 months.


It’s interesting to note the figure has fallen within Bulky Goods units, they remained largely unaffected by the Wilko’s closures, now at 4.2% - the lowest we have ever recorded. The sharpest increase was felt within Open A1 including food schemes which rose to 5.8%, a one percent increase to the Q2 figure of 4.8% while Open A1 Non-Food fell slightly to 6.2% (6.3% at Q2).


Overall 2.77 million sq. ft. of space is under offer with a further 530,000 sq. ft. earmarked for non-retail purposes, if we were to remove both of those from our figures the vacancy rate would fall towards 4.0%.



UK Retail Warehousing Floor Space Q3 2023
UK Retail Warehousing Floor Space Q3 2023

Image credits: James - stock.adobe.com



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