Realcast: Rush for UK resi, retail climbs back, CEE spotlight, offices flex, the disaster factor

In the spotlight this week:

Greystar buys four student accommodation buildings and a build-to-rent asset from developer Downing for £388 million – the first time Greystar has introduced housing specifically for young professionals in the UK.

Mark, formerly Meyer Bergman, establishes a JV to build a £500 million residential project in London’s Kensington.

Retailer Next has announced its first ever store that brings together fashion, beauty and its home offering under one roof following better than expected sales over Christmas.

UK retail in general sees improving figures and retail REIT Hammerson  announced that it expects full-year earnings for 2021 to be in the region of of £75 to £80 million, ahead of the previous estimate of only £60 million, with improved rent collection figures too.

Meanwhile, Amazon has opened its first clothing store in the US – notable because what the company does in the US it later does in the UK and Europe.

In Central and Eastern Europe, where retail’s decline has been slower than elsewhere on the continent, 2022 is a crucial year geopolitically, with relationships tested by Russia’s apparent threat to Ukraine. In the real estate sectors, offices are still 40% of volumes and set to grow further and demand for flexible offices is rising which means adaptation is required by landlords.

In London, US investment bank Citi is investing £100 million on completely refurbishing its Canary Wharf headquarters, which is a boost for the capital but the purpose is to make space post-pandemic friendly, more flexible and greener.

A report on flexible offices, meanwhile, found 62% of UK landlords are struggling to attract tenants to fill traditional office spaces and will increase the proportion of flexible space.

Lastly, research by the ULI and Heitmann indicates that investors should take into account climate migration and displacement of people by natural disasters which could trigger large shifts in property demand.

Click on the video above or the podcast below for the full Realcast discussion.