In terms of contracting, office rental in Spain was significantly impacted by the pandemic. Thus, contracting fell 42% in Madrid during 2020 (334.000 sqm), whereas in Barcelona the drop was steeper (-64%), with around 140.000 sqm, influenced by the low availability. Occupancy in both cities surpassed 470.000 sqm during 2020, representing a 51% yoy drop.
JLL’s forecast for this segment for 2021 is encouraging, since it predicts a significant upturn in contracting which will increase around 50% in Barcelona and near 20% in Madrid. Following the beginning of the lockdown in Spain, the prime rents’ increase stopped, so that the reference prices for the fourth quarter of 2020 dropped between 1% and 2% yoy in Madrid and Barcelona. JLL expects rents to rise once again in the coming years and to return to pre-Covid levels on the mid-term.
In terms of the future office offer nationwide, Madrid has a stock of around 15 million sqm, ranking sixth amongst the great European cities. Barcelona’s stock is somewhat smaller at 6 million sqm, but it is also ranked amongst the main European markets.
The future joint offer of Madrid and Barcelona will add 639.400 sqm to the office stock in the coming years.