London office blocks turned into housing
Record numbers of office buildings in London are being turned into housing, according to figures from a property agent.
DTZ has found the number of conversions granted planning permission in the capital reached 2,197 at the end of the third quarter of 2012 from the start of the year, more than in any previous year.
In 2011 the number of completed conversions was 835. For 2012 DTZ predicts the figure will be 1,212, as the planning increase feeds through into building work.
It estimates in 2013 scheme completions will rise by 11 per cent from the 2012 figure to 1,350 units and in 2014 by 18 per cent again to around 1,600 units.
DTZ also predicts there will be a change in the location of schemes. Many of the conversions have been in the Docklands area over the past eight years. But with few sites in the Docklands with permission, the City of London and fringe areas will deliver 40 per cent of the conversion units delivered in 2013/14, the report states.
DTZ says the increase is due to the continuing rise in residential values.
Ben Burston, head of UK research at DTZ, said: ‘Strong growth in central London residential values is making the conversion of office sites to residential use attractive to developers and landlords.’