Knight Frank have recorded over 40m sq ft of requirements in 2020, experiencing spikes for units over 250,000 sq ft at the start of Lockdown 1.0 and then all size levels coming out of Lockdown 2.0.

Requirements received per month by size:

Requirements started relatively steady before the unprecedented events of the year took hold.

At the start of Lockdown 1.0, we recorded a sharp increase in requirements for buildings over 250,000 sq ft. A majority of these requirements were reactionary in response to the global pandemic, and on a short term basis. We can attribute 18% of take up this year to the pandemic.

The summer months were quieter than in normal years as businesses focussed on finding their feet during the lockdown, working out how to best work remotely or with reduced staffing numbers. Online orders also boomed during this period leaving many managing higher workloads with less employees.

All requirements picked up as UK restrictions were lifted before dropping off in August, and then peaked again immediately before Lockdown 2.0.

The tail end of the 2020 fell back to a level of normality with a general decline in requirements heading into the December Christmas period.