Big growth in demand for offices

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THE number of Sheffield firms taking office space in the city more than doubled during the last quarter, according to a new report.

A study by officebroker.com found that the take-up of serviced office space in the city rose by 167% when compared to the same period last year.

There was also an 11% increase in the number of new inquiries received by the firm between April and June in comparison to the same quarter in 2010.

On average, each Sheffield firm is taking on one additional workstation than during the same period last year, indicating that many are keen to expand their operations.

Businesses were also reported to be taking out agreements on a slightly shorter basis with the average firm signing up to an 11-month agreement. This is one month shorter than during the same period last year but still remains two months longer than the average duration across the UK.

There has been a 27% fall in the average Sheffield workstation price, which is shown to have stood at £144, more than £85 cheaper than the £229 average for the rest of the UK.

Officebroker.com head of sales Chris Meredith said the results showed a real demand for growth. “The most noticeable statistic in the report is that the number of new tenants has more than doubled when compared to the second quarter of 2010. This is a really encouraging sign and, coupled with the increase in new inquiries, paints a healthy picture as to the state of the market in the city.

“Sheffield firms entering the market at this time are taking on more space than before which could indicate many have been able to expand their operations over the past year.

“Whilst average contract length has fallen slightly it’s still above the UK average, which indicates businesses in the city are planning for the mid to long term.

“Workstation price does remain below the UK average at present, which may continue to incentivise yet more businesses to enter the serviced office market in the coming months.”