GeoView and DKM Economic have published a new report, on the commercial property sector, which claims that vacancies have risen marginally, between July and September of this year, as the retail sector continues to struggle.
The report advises that around 12.3% of business premises were vacant across the country, in September, compared to just 11.9%, at the end of June. Given the much-publicised shortage of suitable office space in Ireland, this increase will surprise many commentators, but it must be noted that this only tells half the story.
Nearly three-quarters of the vacant buildings were in services, retail and distribution. Therefore, according to the report, the aforementioned increase was driven overwhelmingly by this jump. However, the financial and public sectors have the lowest levels of vacancies, at a combined rate of just 4.1%.
In significant contrast to this, there are a disproportionate number of vacant commercial buildings in rural areas. For example, the town of Ballybofey, in Co Donegal, has a vacancy rate of 28.2%, compared to Greystones, Co. Wicklow, which is at just 3.5%.