Agency update, project management, specialist property consultancy and property upgrades for EPC changes

Posted on 17 March 2016.

After a promising start to the year with plenty of activity, many of us working in commercial property are now experiencing a rather quieter period across the region as a whole. Although there is still take-up, I think the market overall will remain cautious while we await the outcome of the EU referendum.

However, Northampton as a town is starting to see the fruit of long overdue investment. With the council consulting over the possibly ‘contentious’ route for the Northern Relief Road, the development plans for the University and recent announcements regarding multinational chains taking space in the town centre show that the town is really on the up.  

Whilst this is great news for the town, on the agency side of the business, we are now facing a serious shortage of stock. We have a considerable list of clients actively seeking commercial property within the town, both leasehold and freehold. Whilst all types of commercial property are in demand, there is particular interest in all sizes of industrial units and we have retained searches in place for clients seeking commercial freeholds. If you need tenants or are considering selling a property, please don’t hesitate to get in touch. 

On the consultancy side, we have several very interesting projects currently on the go. We are currently working on a large project management job for a new build medical centre in Cambridgeshire, headed up by our Building Surveyor, Tony Young. Tony is also undertaking a series of Planned Maintenance Surveys for a large GP practice which is in the process of merging with several other practices to give visibility of the state of its properties and the financial impact over the next 5 years. 

As another example of the specialist advice we are able to offer, we’re advising a client on the creation of a large student accommodation development; a complex project which will involve a planning application for change of use. We’re working closely with specialist architects and planning advisors to develop the project and explore all angles.  

In terms of our property management team, we are currently working with an in-house client to assess compliance with the changes to EPCs which will come into force in April 2018. The changes will require properties which have an EPC grading of F or G to be upgraded to meet a minimum standard before they can be re-let, sub-let or assigned. The client, which holds a portfolio of properties across the Midlands, holds a development of small business units which will be affected by the change in legislation. The unit is currently being refurbished and by investigating the environmental changes needed now, we have been able to give the client a clear view of works needed and the associated costs over the coming months.