2021 Business Predictions: Bruce Collinson, director at Adair Paxton

It’s that time of year, when Business Link Magazine invites the region’s business leaders to offer up their predictions for the year ahead. 

It has become something of a tradition, given that we’ve been doing this now for over 30 years.

Here we speak to Bruce Collinson, a director at Leeds-based Adair Paxton, which provides both residential and commercial sales and lettings services, as well as having established survey and block management divisions.

The property market is often seen as a barometer for the wider economy, but it’s currently divided, and I foresee further polarisation, as the currently buoyant property sectors prosper further, and weaker areas of the sector continue to struggle.

Roundly, that means the onward march of big sheds and industrial space, driven by online retail and companies increasing stock levels and strengthening supply chains.

In the residential sector, larger suburban houses, rural retreats with land and anything with a home office which is more than a back bedroom, are all going to prosper and see demand.

The corollary will be poor demand for smaller homes, especially one bedroom properties, less owner-occupier demand in city centres and continued over-supply of secondary and tertiary retail, tired offices and obsolete buildings with no clear development margin.

Land values ought to increase with pent-up demand and slow supply in Q2 2020. However, abnormal costs associated with development sites just seem to escalate year on year, so it’s likely that in reality, land values will remain flat.

It will be a Happy New Year for some, but not all.