Despite a mixed welcome for ‘Freedom Week’ and the lifting of pandemic regulations, Acuitus’s July auction once again illustrated that investor appetite for commercial property has been sustained throughout the first half of the year. The auctioneer’s latest sale saw 91% of the lots offered sell for a total of £12.76m. This brought the total realised at Acuitus auctions during the first half of the year to £93m – a 60% increase on the corresponding period in 2020.
Acuitus Chairman and Auctioneer, Richard Auterac, commented: “The first half of this year has seen the tech platform on which our auctions are now conducted come of age. The ease of access and convenience of our live-streamed auctions has been enthusiastically adopted by those who wish to invest in commercial property.
“As we head into the second half of the year, demand from private investors should remain on a continued upward curve as an increased universe of buyers target both secure income and asset management potential.”
The readjustment in the pricing of high street retail assets located outside London and the major cities continues with demand remaining firm for the best locations. At the July sale, a freehold retail investment in Farnham sold for £910,000 at a net initial yield of 6.76%. The 4,129-sq ft shop at 41-42 The Borough was let last September to accessories, homeware and gifts retailer, White Stuff on a new five-year lease at an annual rent of £65,000. A freehold retail investment in London’s Kingston-upon-Thames let to Pret A Manger until 2028 at a current rent of £181,500 sold prior for substantially more than the guide price of £1.9m.
There has been concerted buying of Greater London investments throughout 2021. A mixed-use investment/development opportunity in Stamford Hill offering current income £108,320 sold prior at comfortably over its guide price of £1.7m.
Richard Auterac added: “Whether it is properties which provide management potential through residential on the upper floors or those that offer the security of income, the auction room continues to be the most effective means of matching investors with the assets which suit their investment strategies”.
The next Acuitus auction will take place on Friday 24th September and will provide online, telephone and proxy bidding.