Central and Greater London

After a slow but stable 2012, 2013 saw a great deal of growth in the office rental market in London: activity increased in the office rental market by 53%, and this trend of growth is only expected to increase further. The trend is thanks mostly to the change in the type of businesses which are investing in London City property: while the banking and financial sectors have decreased to below 1% of investments in 2013, technology, media and telecommunication (TMT) industries have increased their investments dramatically - from 8% in 2006 to 27% in 2013. As these are industries which require a great deal of office space and a huge number of employees, it is predicted that the growth of London's office rental market will only increase in the next five years. Indeed, Oxford Economics predict that the next five years will see over 82,000 new office-based employment opportunities within London: all of which will require office-space and lead to a further increase in the growth of the office rental market.

The offices of many of these high-earning TMT companies - such as Google, which is situated in London's West End - reflect their earnings with open-plan, bright and funky offices. Google's office is a massive 160,000 square feet.

Property development companies which are proving popular in 2014 for office development include Derwent London Plc and Great Portland Estates Plc. Both of these companies have seen increased numbers of investors as real estate fund managers predict that the lack of available office space in London will lead to an increase in their stock values. Both of these companies primarily concentrate of developments in London's West End, which has the highest office rents in the world.

London (both the Central and Greater sectors) is hugely popular with foreign investors, with 91% of investments in the office rental market in 2013 being from non-domestic investors. However, many home businesses are predicted to increase their investments in some of London's business centres, of which there are many. The most popular business centres found in London currently include Enfield Business Centre and De Vere West One, which is located in Marylebone.

Rental rates in London City vary hugely, with some of the more popular addresses - such as those found in West End London - charging over £100 per square foot of office space. Rents in London City are little more than half this, at £57.50 a square meter, according to Colliers. Dockland rents are between £25 and £35 per square meter, while cheaper rents are found further afield: such as those in Croydon, which are £20 per square meter. In accordance with the influx in popularity of small and medium enterprises (SME), between 2002 and 2012 the number of employees - and therefore office sizes - almost quadrupled from 27,000 to 100,000 in Canary Wharf.

2013 saw historically low vacancy levels in London - by the end of 2013 there was 94% occupation of office space and only 6% vacancy. As such, there is a definite lack in grade A office space, which may lead in time to investors turning their sights to locations outside of the capital. Similarly, as online sales become more popular in retail, many businesses will look for specific structural facilities, such as proximity to distribution routes to decrease delivery times, when finding new office properties.