Nomura’s rent-free deal of almost six years on its new City of London headquarters this week highlighted how far the market has fallen as developers stretch their terms to secure high quality, long-term tenants for their properties.

It is the latest – but by far the largest – in a series of recent office lets featuring several years free of rent and low rents.

The economic downturn has sapped requirements for new offices, particularly in the banking sector, where paying to move depleted workforces into trophy buildings is far from a priority.

However, City agents hope that the Nomura deal will mark a turning point for the market, particularly as it comes at a time of greater optimism elsewhere in the financial sector. They predict that the generous terms are unlikely to be replicated.

Financial Times