mproved investor confidence and lending conditions, as well as notably increased activity from opportunistic investors in recovering markets, led to a strong start for the European commercial real estate market in 2014, according to the latest research from global property advisor CBRE.
Total commercial real estate investment in Europe reached €37.9 billion in Q1 2014 - a 18% increase on Q1 2013. Following an exceptionally strong end to 2013, the Q1 2014 total was predictably below Q4 2013’s €62.4billion.
The fastest year-on-year growth in Q1 2014 was seen in Austria (+183%), Ireland (+179%), Spain (+132%) and Finland (+103%). The core markets of Sweden (+68%), Germany (+47%) and France (+37%) also showed significant growth compared to Q1 2013.
Investment activity in the UK held relatively steady compared with Q1 2013, slipping 3% to €11.4 billion.
Commercial real estate investment activity in Central & Eastern Europe (CEE) dropped 35% on the same quarter last year, driven by a significant decrease in Russia, which recorded its lowest quarter since Q1 2012. Poland (+41%) showed significant growth compared to Q1 2013. Some of the smaller markets also saw decreased levels of investment; however, Romania saw significant uplift (albeit from a low base).