Sperry Van Ness International Corporation’s (SVNIC) 2015 Market Update Reports assess the current state of the national commercial real estate market, and identify micro-trends within specific geographic regions and industries for 2015. Today we are delving into the 2015 Top Industrial Markets to Watch. Not the largest or the most actively contested markets, the 2015 Industrial Markets to Watch are each at an important juncture that presents unique opportunities for investment. Together, they reflect the diversity of trends that is driving the economy and commercial real estate performance in markets across the country.
Top Industrial Market to Watch: Chicago, IL
The nation’s largest industrial market in terms of inventory, Chicago is also one its strongest. Vacancy rates have been declining consistently for over three years, reaching 6.5% in the first quarter of 2015 according to Chandan Economics’ tracking of mortgage-financed properties. Lower vacancy rates and one of the strongest rates of asking rent growth in the country have prompted an increase in development activity. Investors should not be too concerned about the nearly 10 million square feet of space under construction as of early 2015, almost half of which is spec. While that level of activity could overwhelm a smaller market, it represents less than 1% of Chicago’s massive inventory of industrial space.
The drivers of demand for space in the Windy City and its surroundings are as varied as the region’s economy. Warehouses, logistics, distribution, and fulfillment centers, as well as flex space and data centers are all benefiting from growth in demand. Investors may be frustrated by the degree of competition for high quality assets. Prices reflect the market’s prospects, with cap rates falling to below 6% in 2014 and early 2015.
To read more on Chicago and other top industrial markets, download the full version of the 2015 Industrial Market Update report here.
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