Prices hold firm despite empty shops

ONE in ten stores in Scotland is lying empty according to a new report conducted by Stirling University’s Institute of Retail Studies and the Local Data Company (LDC).

The report found that retail vacancy rates across cities and towns dipped from 12.6% to 12.3%, which its authors described as encouraging against a backdrop of increasing vacancies overall.

Scotland’s somewhat stationary retail vacancy rate chimes with property market activity, where average prices declined by 0.4% according to commercial property specialist Christie & Co.

The firm noted that despite the dip in average price, the number of transactions last year were up 29% on 2016.

Forecourt retail units had a particularly strong year according to Christie & Co, with the total value of forecourt convenience sales sitting at £4bn in 2017.

Steve Rodell, MD for retail at Christie & Co, said: “Properties with healthy fuel margins and growing convenience operations ensured strong market prices throughout 2017.”