Property agent Christie & Co is struggling to keep up with the demand for forecourts.
Tesco, Sainsbury and AF Blakemore are leading the charge, according to Christie surveyor Tom Robinson. And now that certain banks are willing to loan money for the purchase of forecourts, individual operators and franchise holders are also looking to buy stores.
But there is a limited supply, as Christie & Co estimates there are only about 3,000 individually owned forecourts around the UK. And because owners are tied to longer contracts with petrol suppliers, there is less movement than in the convenience sector.
Robinson said: “There are never enough properties to go round.
“Everyone is willing to look at individual units as long as they have scope for convenience. If they are bigger than 1,000 sq ft, retailers realise there are profits to be made.”