May 4, 2023
The vast majority of UK office landlords do not have a sustainability strategy in place despite evidence showing that it would increase the attractiveness of their properties to tenants, according to a new poll commissioned by infinitSpace in partnership with The Instant Group. The survey defined a strategy as several policies with an overall aim to reduce greenhouse emissions and/or promote environmentally friendly practices.
The survey of 250 landlords suggests that just 30 percent of UK office owners have developed a clear strategy to reduce overall greenhouse emissions or promote environmentally friendly practices. Two in five (42 percent) have one or more policies in place but no overall strategy, while a quarter (23 percent) are unaware of what policies are in place across their portfolio and 5 percent have no sustainability policies.
Despite low uptake, almost half (48 percent) of landlords recognise that having strong policies is essential to keeping occupancy rates high. This was demonstrated by the correlation between landlords’ occupancy levels and sustainability strategies. Of those with an occupancy level greater than 70 percent, over half (56 percent) have sustainability strategies in place – almost double the average (30 percent). Comparatively, of those with an occupancy rate of less than 40 percent, almost half (46 percent) have no policies or are not aware of what they are.
Summary of key findings:
- Only 30 percent have a sustainability strategy in place, meanwhile:
- 42 percent have individual sustainability policies in place, but no overall strategy
- 23 percent are unaware if any sustainability policies are in place across their portfolio
- 5 percent have no sustainability policies in place
- However, 48 percent recognise that having strong environmental policies is essential to attract tenants to a commercial property today
- Of those with an occupancy level greater than 70 percent, over half (56 percent) have sustainability strategies in place – almost double the average (30 percent).
Wybo Wijnbergen, CEO of infinitSpace, said: “Sustainability is a key factor for businesses when selecting a workspace, and our research has clearly demonstrated that landlords which prioritise this will be rewarded with uptake in demand. But that is not the only reason landlords must have robust sustainability strategies in place. In the UK, the built environment is responsible for a quarter of all greenhouse gas emissions; so the real estate sector clearly has a key role to play in reducing emissions. infinitSpace and The Instant Group’s research highlights that this cannot be achieved without helping office landlords to make their portfolios more sustainable.”