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Planning Policy and Retail Property Investment in the UK



Empirical evidence suggests that planning policies significantly impact on investment property market performance in the UK. It is less clear, however, how information about the planning policy environment feeds into investment decision-making. This paper seeks to explore this issue. It reports on interviews with the property investment community and focuses on the decision to invest in the retail sector. The paper uses a six-stage model of the investment decision-making process as a framework for analysing the way in which concerns about policy impact on behaviour. The results suggest that an understanding of the policy environment and the development of a relationship with local planning authorities are most important in the post-acquisition asset management stage of the investment process. The research also reveals variations in access to policy intelligence and that approaches to analysis of the likely effects of planning regimes vary with fund type and strategy.

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