Hot demand for commercial property in Grangemouth is driving up values, according to a director of DM Hall chartered surveyors in Falkirk.
Mike McIntyre flags up the port as the kingpin in a Central Belt market which he says is seeing signs of improvement, despite uncertainty over Brexit.
“Although this trend is to be warmly welcomed the retail sector undoubtedly faces further significant challenges, particularly in relation to the high street/town centre, a position which is by no means unique to the Falkirk/Stirling areas”.
He said; “In an area dominated by Scotland’s largest container port and the country’s only petrochemical complex at Grangemouth, the industrial sector continues to be a strong performer, a position which is unlikely to change in the foreseeable future.
“Indeed, availability is now becoming a challenge for occupiers, particularly those seeking to purchase workshop/warehouse premises, a position which is now having a positive effect on underlying rental and capital values”.
He added: “This trend is now, for the first time in almost a decade, stimulating development including Northern Trusts construction of Barons Court at Earlsgate, Grangemouth.
“This scheme will see the construction of 18,200 ft² of modern business units ranging between 1,095 ft² and 2,210 ft² which will be available from summer this year at rentals of £8 – 8.50 ft².
“While the retail sector in the Central Belt continues to face a number of significant challenges it has undoubtedly benefited from the introduction of the Small Business Rates Relief Scheme, which has stimulated demand for smaller premises”.
However he says the retail sector in town centres - not just in Falkirk or Stirling - “undoubtedly faces further significant challenges”.