Global real estate advisers CBRE’s latest commercial property report shows that Ireland and Spain are close to record-breaking investment levels.
The Irish market achieved its highest ever total this quarter with €1.6bn — surpassing the previous high in Q3 2006 of €1.5bn as investors continue to look for value in non-core markets.
A combination of features unique to the Irish market are driving the strong performance of the sector, according to CBRE Ireland head of capital markets, Johnny Horgan.
“Following the pattern of deleveraging that has occurred in Ireland over the last few years and which has gained pace over recent quarters, particularly since Nama began to offload several portfolios of assets, there has been a notable increase in transactional activity in the Irish market.
“The volume of spend in the first nine months of 2014 at almost €3bn is above even the volume of activity seen at the peak of the Irish market in 2006/2007.
“A combination of availability of product, the strength of the underlying occupier markets, Dublin’s higher rental growth projections and the superior economic growth projections for Ireland relative to the eurozone generally, are encouraging a range of new investors to look for opportunities in the Irish market,” said Mr Horgan.
The level of interest in the Irish market is matched only by the Spanish market where €3.5bn was invested in Q3 2014 — its second highest quarterly total ever.
European investment totalled €48.4bn in the third quarter of the year — a substantial increase on Q3 2013 and 4% higher than the previous quarter.
For the year-to-date, total investment has reached €133bn compared to €105bn for the three quarters of 2013.
The report echoes another produced by Davy Stockbrokers which indicated that Dublin office rents are likely to surpass pre-recession levels within two years.