SW Real Estate | Real Estate

Michelmores reports a strong third quarter for SW Real Estate

Lucy Smallwood, Head of Michelmores' Residential Development team has commented on increased levels of activity across all sectors of the Exeter-based Real Estate team, despite initial concerns after June 2016's referendum outcome.

During 2016, the team have acted for a number of significant clients across the country, both residential and commercial. This has included acting for Skypark Development Partnership, the joint venture vehicle for St. Modwen Properties and Devon County Council on the development and sale of a new large-scale office building at Skypark to Devon and Cornwall Housing, and acting for Yelverton Properties Development Limited on the contract arrangements for the development of student accommodation at St. James Park Exeter.

Lucy Smallwood said:

"There was a short period after Brexit when levels of confidence dipped. However, the few abortive deals quickly created opportunities for other developers."

"Overall we have seen increased levels of activity across all sectors, such that the last quarter of 2016 was one of our busiest for Real Estate."

"In the residential development sector, the drive for higher margins is driving greater levels of due diligence, and the need for more creative solutions to address risk.  Conditional deals are becoming more common, as developers seek to cover off every aspect of the planning process, including reserved matters approval, before purchase."

The team have acted for a number of residential developers, landowners and promoters of land across the SW region.

The Exeter-based team also lent their support to Michelmores' Corporate team, acting for St Austell Brewery Limited in the acquisition of Bath Ales Limited. The acquisition included the brewery, its portfolio of beer brands and its 11-strong pub estate.

"Looking ahead, I would say that the real estate market in Exeter and the South West is hugely exciting. We have many highlights including the Science Park in Exeter, Skypark Business Park as well as the Exeter Gateway Distribution Park and Matford Green Business Park", said Smallwood.

"We have a successful new and growing town at Cranbrook, as well as residential urban extensions including Taunton, Tiverton, Cullompton and South West Exeter. The growth agenda is huge – there are lots of opportunities for good quality work and members of the team are involved in many of these areas and projects."