Industrial property leasing volumes fall for first time in 11 years

Industrial property leasing volumes fall for first time in 11 years

Leasing of single- and multiple-use factory spaces slowed in Q4 2022.

Leasing volumes for industrial properties slowed in Q4 2022, falling 3.5% compared to the same quarter a year ago, according to data by Savills Research. 

Single- and multiple-use factory spaces largely drove the decline, recording a 15.5% fall and 1.2% fall compared to a year ago. 

As a result, total leasing volume fell 4.4% for the whole year–the first decline recorded since 2011, when leasing transactions plummeted 20%.

Vacancy levels are also on the rise. Vacancy for single-user factories grew for the sixth consecutive quarter, recording a 10.9%rise in Q4. Savills said that this was likely to be due to the addition of 2.73 million sq ft of new supply and some relocation amongst industrialists. 

Significant increases in vacancy rates were particularly observed in the East and North East Planning Regions, particularly the West and North Planning Areas.

The business park segment recorded a significant rise in vacancy rates, with a 17.5% increase– the largest across all industrial property segments, said Savills.

Notably, vacancy rates in International Business Park (IBP) surged to 37.3% in Q4, from only 24.5% in Q3. Apart from the weaker connectivity to main transport nodes, the higher vacancy levels were also attributed to the partial completion of Perennial Business City in Q4 2022.

Rent prices also rise

Despite the slowdown in leasing, however, rent prices continued to rise for the ninth consecutive quarter in Q4.

JTC’s rental index  for multiple-user factory spaces rose by 2.6% quarter-on-quarter (QoQ), whilst the rental index for single-user factory spaces rose by 1.3% QoQ, a slightly moderated pace compared to the 2.0% in the previous quarter.

Savills’ average monthly rents for prime multiple-user factories remained unchanged in Q4 at S$2.01 per sqft.

Healthy leasing demand and a shortage of quality facilities led to the rise of Savills’ average monthly rents for warehouse and logistics properties by 1.3% QoQ to S$1.53 per s ft over the same quarter.

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