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Latest trends – commercial property

By: Kelly Bellerson
News
01/02/2023

Here are some of the latest figures going into 2023.

With inflation remaining above 10%, the commercial property sector is still facing its share of challenges; with the number of commercial builds underinsured at a record high and housing associations under pressure to change their service framework.


Underinsurance

Over the past year, 96% of claims managers have reported a rise in the number of underinsured properties.

Gallagher has found 40% of commercial properties do not have the appropriate insurance cover for their building(s) and its assets. That’s currently two in five commercial properties across the UK.

On average, underinsured properties were only covered by 43% against their rebuild value. Comparatively, over the last five years, 16% of commercial builds have not reviewed their insurance cover at all – putting them at greater financial risk.

Where inflation is staying above 10%, it is taking commercial buildings on average 33% longer to carry out repair works, compared to the same time a year ago in 2022.

This is where reinstatement cost assessments become crucial for property owners, avoiding legal hassle and disputes with claims managers.


Housing Associations

Expectations are constantly changing around Social Housing standards with new legislations, requirements, and improvement works being implemented.

The latest guidance from The Better Housing Social Review has been released, highlighting their recommendations for housing associations on ways to improve the quality of their properties and service.

Key points:

  • A thorough audit of stock should be conducted; Housing associations should work together to conduct and publish its findings.
  • Redefine good maintenance and repair works; Housing associations should work with tenants and contractors to apply new standards in this area.
  • Traditional Housing Officer Roles: The Chartered Institute of Housing should support this role and promote employment opportunities.
  • Tenant influence: Through both voluntary and paid roles, tenants should be able to voice their opinions and have influence over decisions made at every level by Housing Associations.
  • Community Presence: Housing Associations need to be more proactive within their communities.
  • Annual reviews: Progress should be recorded and submitted by tenants and frontline staff, showing improvement via this report’s recommendations.

Responses

The National Housing Federation and Chartered Institute of Housing explaining how they are taking every recommendation from the review on board and are actioning a nation-wide plan on how landlords can respond systematically to them.

Landlords will need to prioritise the needs of their tenants further, as reports of ‘very serious’ issues with social homes rose towards the end of 2022.

The NHF and CIH have said their plans, in response to these recommendations, include checking social housing for defects, such as mould and damp, and ensuring there is appropriate communication between tenants and landlords when it comes to the condition of the property.


Changing the narrative

Whether it’s underinsurance, non-compliant EPC ratings, or housing defects, these small issues can become bigger problems if left unattended.

From reinstatement cost assessments to help identify what insurance cover your building needs, to energy assessing to ensure your commercial property is up to date with the latest MEES, there are a number of services that can be tailored to your building’s needs.

Technical due diligence, schedule of condition, or a residential building survey can help landlords and tenants understand the needs and condition of their dwelling.

With inflation remaining stubbornly high, country-wide labour shortages, and increasing material costs, ensuring your build is appropriately protected is vital for 2023.

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