In the Netherlands, more than 7 million m² of office space is unused, half of which is considered permanently vacant. There is no realistic expectation that a major part of this empty office space will ever be let for the purpose it was originally designed for. Part of these offices is sited in desirable locations, and in such a condition that conversion into homes offers excellent opportunities. Demand for rental homes is increasing because it is becoming increasingly difficult for a growing number of people to obtain mortgages. Converting empty offices has many advantages; vacant space is filled, while simultaneously creating much needed housing in desirable areas. By reusing existing structures, construction time is reduced and materials are used (recycled) in a sustainable manner.
The boom in conversion projects means competition for existing housing stock is becoming greater and stronger. To be able to compete with new homes coming onto the market is it is necessary to gear the offer of existing homes to current market demand. This means existing homes must be improved qualitatively so that these offer sufficient convenience with equal or even lower energy consumption. The renovation of existing residential buildings is one of AO Development’s focus areas.
COMMERCIAL REAL ESTATE
In addition to residential real estate, AO Development also seeks opportunities in commercial real estate. The market for hotels, offices and retail real estate, etc. offers plenty of opportunities for investors looking for an alternative risk/profit correlation to the housing market. Good results can be achieved with critical selection based on development potential, and active management of real estate.