Being up-to-date with the local issues is important, this is especially true if you are considering investing in a retail space. With take up of local retail units showing a conflicting story in different areas, how can local issues have an effect on the retail aspect? Local patterns of business are important to us here at Curchod and Co. We refine our local knowledge to enable us to offer the most accurate advice to our clients. Never is this expertise so key as in retail, where local fluctuations are most heightened.
Both Surrey and Hampshire (with the exception of Southampton, Portsmouth and the Isle of Wight) operate as County Councils made up of districts or boroughs. Where the county will cover many core services, planning, environmental issues and revenue collection is devolved to districts. A thriving retail sector is a benefit for all aspects of a district or borough, and at Curchod and Co, we are very aware of what makes a retail property attractive to both buyers and tenants.
Empty units are the scourge of any high street or town centre. At Curchod and Co we work tirelessly to market quality retail units for our clients. Disputes can arise regarding the approach that a district may take to ensure the health of their high street. We pride ourselves on working with both landlords and tenants to ensure that high-quality retail units are filled with high-quality retail providers.
Business Improvement Districts (BIDs)
Business Improvement Districts or BIDs were introduced across England and Wales through the Local Government Act 2003 and subsequent regulations in 2004. By February 2017, there were 270 BIDs across the United Kingdom. Fleet in Hart District and Camberley in Surrey Heath Borough are great examples of positive BID organisations. Towns which boast initiatives like Business Improvement Districts enjoy an added appeal for retail tenants searching for a new location.
Business and Domestic
There are competing pressures of domestic and commercial properties on local government resources. Many district councils manage this conflict by forming a local town plan. Of course, this is not a solution to ongoing pressures; however, it can be helpful for prospective retailers. For example, when a town plan shows ambition to increase domestic property provision, retail demand will likely increase. This can make a retail investment a wise decision for a landlord or a key move for a long-term tenant. The commercial managers at Curchod and Co understand the importance of holding this local knowledge when we market and negotiate leases for our retail properties.
Council Owned Property
Increasingly, local councils are purchasing commercial property as a revenue generator. As centralised funding becomes increasingly squeezed, it is understandable that this investment model is taken up by local councils since it is a proven method of investment in the commercial sector.
We can’t highlight enough the importance of local knowledge for successful sales and lettings of retail property. At Curchod and Co we use our knowledge, in all the areas listed above, to identify where marginal changes can affect the investments of our clients with a view to optimising the success of the property.