Research from Remit Consulting indicates that the rent collection rates from business tenants are still lagging behind the figures reported a year ago, and suggests that this is a growing concern for property managers and landlords.
The firm's study, based on validated data from major property management agents across the country, reveals that 76.6% of all rents were collected within seven days after the March quarter day. This figure is similar to the collection rates reported after seven days of the December quarter, but there is a decline in collection rates in the retail and leisure sectors compared to the previous quarter, with the industrial and office sectors performing better and preventing a further decrease.
At the beginning of the current financial quarter, Remit Consulting revealed that the overall payment of rents due was only 63.0%, which is 3.5 percentage points lower than the figure recorded on the December Quarter Day in 2022 and 2.1% lower than the one reported in March 2022.
According to Remit Consulting's latest data, the rent collection rate for retail properties is almost 5% lower than the equivalent stage of the last quarter, while for leisure properties, the rate was down by almost 1.5%.
Conversely, collection rates for industrial properties were over 5% higher than three months ago.
Laura Andrews of Remit Consulting said "The sluggish start to the current quarter in terms of rent collection on commercial properties has continued on the high street, where collection rates for retail properties are 4.6% lower than the same stage of the previous quarter and 2.5% lower than twelve months ago.
"While the industrial and office sectors have boosted the overall figures seen on the due date, there are clear signs that businesses might be struggling to pay what they owe to landlords. While rent collection from office occupiers increased from 62.9% on the due date to 77.0% seven days later, which was 2.8% higher when compared to the same point in the previous quarter, rent collection was 5.2% down compared to the figure recorded twelve months ago. This suggests that the office market is also struggling in the current climate," she added.
Remit Consulting’s REMark research covers around 125,000 leases on 31,500 prime commercial property investment properties across the country and the firm has recently launched an online portal to make it possible for building managers, investors, and asset managers to benchmark individual properties and portfolios against the market in real-time.