Due to hybrid working, the charity is now at The Avenues. Credit: via Be Seen Be Heard

Knight Frank brokers Gateshead office swap

Charity Changing Places and tech services supplier Smart IT have exchanged properties in the Team Valley, with the latter acquiring 10,000 sq ft at Marquis Court.

Knight Frank surveyor Nathan Douglas, who negotiated the concurrent sale and lease deals, said: “The stars were aligned for this one. Both parties got exactly what they were looking for.”

The consultancy sold the Team Valley property on behalf of Changing Lives to Smart IT for £880,000 and negotiated a lease at IT Smart’s former office – H26 The Avenues – for Changing Lives to move into.

As a result of the pandemic, Changing Lives adopted a hybrid working model. With its HQ building proving too large, it appointed Knight Frank to market the site, close to Retail World.

Meanwhile, just around the corner on the trading estate, Smart IT had tripled headcount in just 12 months, leading it to seek a move from its 4,154 sq ft office space and buy a new base outright.

Both the offices have been recently refurbished.

Douglas added: “The Marquis Court property had plenty of interest given its prominent location on the main road running through the estate and proximity to the shopping amenities. We had other offers but we needed to hold out for a deal that reflected market value in order to adhere to the rules of selling property under the Charities Act.”

National charity Changing Lives, which supports thousands of people in the most challenging of circumstances each year to make positive change in their lives, has signed a five-year lease at H26 The Avenues on Eleventh Avenue North.

Chief executive Stephen Bell said: “We’re delighted with the way the sale has been handled and it’s great that we’re able to keep a prime location on the Team Valley for our central office location.”

Tony Wilson at Smart IT said: “Over the past few years, we have enjoyed fantastic growth both in terms of clients and staff. We are anticipating exponential growth in the coming years so this is the right time to create the space to realise our ambitious plans.”

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