Regional office markets in Poland – Q2 2023
Approaching new supply gap will not become a game changer for regional cities
The incoming new supply gap on the Polish office market has been anticipated for over a year. Initially, it was applicable to the Warsaw office market, but weakening construction activity is also currently visible across regional cities.
A decreasing number of new construction starts is directly related to higher costs of financing, material prices and labour costs. In addition, for a significant proportion of the projects planned, the start of construction is dependent on securing a key tenant. At the end of Q2 2023, about 700,000 m² was under construction across key office markets in Poland, with approx. 0.5 million m² located outside Warsaw.
It is worth highlighting that the new supply gap will not translate into a deficit of prime quality space for lease. Supply of immediately available space is at an elevated level with the last few months seeing an increase across nearly all regional markets. Nearly 40% of vacancy space is located in buildings delivered to the market post-2019. Vacancy rates in these buildings will gradually decrease in the coming quarters, due to occupier relocations from offices of lower quality standards.
In H1 2023, demand for office space in regional markets stood at 334,100 m², which is a relatively strong result and on a par with pre-pandemic volumes. However, the take-up structure with a significant percentage of lease renegotiations (33%) and marginal pre-lets, confirms that the market is still dogged by uncertainty.
Q2 2023 saw an increase in prime rental rates in Wroclaw (€14.5-16.0 €/m²/month) and Tri-City (€13.9-15.9 €/m²/month). In the case of other markets, rents remained unchanged q/q.
The prime cap rates in Kraków and Wrocław, which remain the core regional markets, are currently estimated at approx. 6.25%.