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Is warehouse space running out?

Although it might be thought that the country is occupying its time in a continual debate about the future, it is easy to forget that life and commerce carries on…

Although it might be thought that the country is occupying its time in a continual debate about the future, it is easy to forget that life and commerce carries on. Underneath the flurries of claim and counter claim in virtually every media we encounter there is news that is more reflective of the reality of the economy, rather than any theoretical possibilities.

The latest job statistics, for example, show that the UK unemployment rate is down to 5%, the lowest since October 2005. Indeed the employment rate stands at a record high of 74.2% and earnings rose by 2.3% compared to last year. (Source : Office of National Statistics) Particularly encouraging is the report that manufacturing output grew by 2.3% in April, which is the biggest monthly rise since July 2012. It does seem to be good news at the moment, but there are factors down the line (apart from the obvious) which may interfere with the upward trajectory.

Warehouse space shortage

It is unfortunate that often when there is good news there can be other news which can interfere with the optimistic outlook. A recent report compiled by the United Kingdom Warehousing Association (UKWA) and Savills, the real estate service company, shows that there is a growing shortage of warehouse space in the UK. The report shows that in 2009 there was 100 million sq ft of available warehouse space on the market, whereas today that figure stands at only 30 million sq ft. It doesn’t take a mathematical genius to work out that this means there is 70% less available space today compared to 2009. There is no immediate sign of improvement either as there has been just 10 million sq ft of speculative warehouse development since 2012. It is not only the warehouse structures that are in short supply, but also the land to build them on, as the pressure to build new housing competes for this limited resource.

As might be expected, the warehousing space used is not apportioned evenly throughout the country, but located either near the most populated areas or at the geographical centre in the East and West Midlands, the area known as the” Golden Triangle”. Available space for warehousing and storage will vary widely from area to area, so what can be done?

Can you build your own warehouse?

The result of a shortage means that prices rise, for example last year the rent for warehouse space in Liverpool rose by 16.7%, a significant increase. One solution might be to look closer to home for more space and consider using a temporary warehouse to increase operational capacity.

A temporary warehouse building is a flexible alternative to a traditional building and, as it only requires hard standing to be fixed to, it can be ready in days, and you may not need planning permission. With a robust aluminium frame and steel or polymer clad walls it offers a cost effective solution to an operational space problem. Available in widths up to 30 metres and unlimited lengths, with accessories including, lighting, windows, flooring, guttering, temperature control and power distribution as well as a wide range of access doors, a temporary warehouse can help a business to grow without seeking space off site.

Whatever the warehouse space situation in your area, if you need more room, then a temporary warehouse could be an alternative to a traditional building.