Is it the end of the PDR gold rush?

Office-to-resi PDR gold rush

Property Week asks what has caused the rapid decline in prior approval applications for office-to-residential conversions – and whether there are still opportunities for investors.

That is what some property pundits believe, and the data appears to back up their assumption. Figures from the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) show a rapid decline in prior approval applications for permitted development from 2014 to September 2018.

So what has happened to cause the numbers to plunge so sharply? Is there any appetite left for office-to-resi conversions – or does the balance need to be redressed towards offices?

The PDR regime was introduced by the government in May 2013 in a bid to address the escalating housing crisis and cut through planning red tape. Historically, submitting a planning application for the conversion of commercial property to residential had been time consuming and costly.

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