Scant office space across south east London has prompted rental rates to hit record levels.

Estate agent Knight Frank claims a drop in vacancy rates - which fell from 5.9% to 4.2% in the M25 area - has gone hand in hand with a 13% decrease in availability.

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This means the market has shifted for the benefits of landlords it was revealed, at the firm’s annual M25 breakfast presentation.

The success of the Conservatives in this month’s general election could also see further demand in the office market.

Head of national offices leasing team at Knight Frank, Emma Goodford, said: “2015 has started positively supporting our view that take up in the M25 will be almost 30% ahead of 2014, and above the 10 year average.

“Vacancy levels are heading towards crunch point in combination the market seeing rental growth across a growing number of key centres.

“In some cases rents are now at an all-time high - motivation for occupiers to identify and secure the best space now.

“The election has removed uncertainty and will drive demand.”

A combination of strong investor demand and lack of product have been pinpointed as reasons why stock volumes have been held back.

Investors are also said to be more aware of the benefit of rental growth during hold periods.

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