Friday, January 08, 2010

Reis: U.S. Office Vacancy Rate Hits 15 Year High at 17 Percent

by Bill McBride on 1/08/2010 12:22:00 AM

Office Vacancy Rate Click on graph for larger image in new window.

This graph shows the office vacancy rate starting 1991.

Reis is reporting the vacancy rate rose to 17.0% in Q4, from 16.6% in Q3 and from 14.5% in Q4 2008. The peak following the previous recession was 16.9%.

From Reuters: At 17 pct, US office vacancy rate hits 15-year high

During the fourth quarter the national office vacancy rate climbed 0.40 percentage point from the third quarter to 17 percent, the highest level since 1994.
...
During the fourth quarter, asking rent fell 1.1 percent ... effective rent, dropped 1.9 percent ... For the year, effective rent fell 8.9 percent, the largest one-year decline since Reis began tracking it in 1980.

"Never before have landlords been under so much pressure to offer concessions to attract and retain tenants," Calanog said. "Asking rents have fallen at a lower rate, but this just implies further room to fall down the road if conditions do not improve soon."
The vacancy rate isn't a record, but there was a record decline in effective rents. Add that to the records announced earlier this week ...

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