London office landlords update on rent collection

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Central London office landlords Great Portland Estates and Helical have reported rent collection figures for the first quarter of 2021.

Great Portland Estates

The company has received 69% of rent due, which it said increases to 77% when the £2.1m of rent deposits it anticipates to utilise are included.

As expected, its main issue has been with the retail, hospitality and leisure assets, where just 35% of rent has been collected. It has received 84% of rent due on its office portfolio.

During the quarter, three of its retail occupiers went into administration, representing 1.4% of rent roll. The majority of space affected was in relation to the collapse of the Arcadia Group, which occupied two units at Mount Royal, W1.

The group has implemented measures to help support struggling tenants by offering monthly payment terms, deferral of rental payments or rental holidays.

Levels of occupation in its office buildings are at around 10% of full occupancy, while around 16% of its retail units are open.

Great Portland Estates has now collected 75% of rent for the final three quarters of 2020, or 85% after the utilisation of rent deposits.

At 31 December 2020, the group held rent deposits and bank guarantees totalling £16.5m (September 2020: £18.5m).


Helical’s rent collection figures were more positive. It said it had received 81.8% of all rent contracted and payable for the current quarter, with a further 10.6% to be collected under payment plans by the end of March.

Of the balance, rent holidays have been granted on 3.5%, mainly to food and beverage occupiers, leaving 4.1% subject to ongoing discussions with tenants.

The group also updated on the third and fourth quarter 2020 rent collection figures. It said 91.8% of the third quarter rents have been collected to date. Of the remaining 8.2%, Helical has granted rent concessions on 4.4% and discussions continue on the remaining 3.8%.

For the final quarter of 2020, it has collected 90.5% to date. Of the remaining 9.5%, Helical has granted rent concessions on 3.1% and discussions continue on the remaining 6.4%.

GPOR : HLCL : London office landlords update on rent collection

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