Prime office rents in Singapore up 5.5% in Q1

Singapore's office market saw firm demand in the first quarter this year, as a dearth of fresh supply and healthy demand boosted landlords' asking rentals.

The average rent for Grade A office space in the first three months this year came in at $9.90 per square foot (psf) per month, up 5.5 per cent from the previous quarter, said property consultancy Cushman & Wakefield in a report released on Monday.

This was the fourth straight quarterly increase, as Singapore's growing economy leads firms to expand and seek more office space.

Offices in the Raffles Place area saw the highest increases in rents within the central business district in the first quarter this year.

Rents there shot up some 10 per cent compared with the previous quarter to $9.90 psf per month.

Marina Bay office rentals saw the next highest jump of 9.3 per cent, with an average rate of $12.90 psf per month.

Cushman & Wakefield also noted that there were no new major building completions. Without this competition in supply, rents of existing offices remained buoyant.

It pointed out that "the market saw less pressure on landlords to offer more attractive concession packages in order to draw new tenants to their buildings".

But the consultancy added that tenants will remain cost-conscious on the back of the tight labour situation and increasing business costs here. It expects the take-up rate for new space to be driven by a chance to save costs or other business requirements.

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