Office vacancy up in all capitals except Canberra: PCA

Office vacancy in the Sydney CBD has increased to 8.6 per cent.

The Property Council of Australia’s twice-annual Office Market Report shows vacancy rose in every capital except Canberra – where it was steady.

Twenty per cent of Perth CBD workplaces are now empty – an increase from 18.4pc in July, 2020, and 17.5pc a year ago.

At the other extreme, Hobart has the highest occupancy rate – 94.9pc.

The report measures stock, vacancy and upcoming supply for the country’s major commercial markets.

It is prepared in collaboration with leasing agents and published for January and July.

CBD vacancy highest since 2015

The 1H2021 Office Market Report shows the overall vacancy rate for CBD markets is 11.1pc – the highest since 2015.

For non-CBD sectors – including city fringe and key suburban precincts – it averages 13.4pc.

Capital city breakdown

Sydney – Australia’s biggest market – now has a vacancy rate of 8.6pc – up from 5.6pc six months ago and 3.5pc in January, 2020.

More than half (55.2pc) of upcoming product is pre-committed.

In Melbourne 8.2pc of offices are now empty.

That city too has recorded a sharp rise over the past 12 months; vacancy was 5.8pc last July and a historically low 3.2pc a year ago (story continues below).

According to the PCA, 35.3pc of upcoming stock there is pre-committed – less than most other cities.

Canberra is unchanged from six months ago – 10.1pc of its offices are unoccupied.

As opposed to Sydney and Melbourne, vacancy in that city was higher 12 months ago (10.3pc).

Some 53.4pc of that capital’s upcoming supply has already found occupiers.

According to the PCA, Brisbane’s office occupancy is below the national average – 13.6pc of its stock is empty.

Six months ago the Queensland capital had a vacancy rate of 12.9pc – similar to the start of last year (12.7pc).

About 53.4pc of its upcoming supply has been rented.

In Adelaide, 16pc of workplaces are unoccupied. This rate compares to 14.2pc six months ago and 14pc in January, 2020.

Of its upcoming office product, only 22.9pc is pre-committed.

The vacancy rate in Darwin is now 19.7pc.

Perth CBD has the country’s highest percentage of unoccupied building.

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Marc Pallisco

A former property analyst and journalist, Marc is the publisher of realestatesource.com.au.

Marc Pallisco