Richmond’s commercial real estate market on the mend?

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Print this page Paula C. Squires

Sales were up in every category in 2010 for the Richmond commercial real estate market.  “… A big rebound in sales of improved commercial real estate in Greater Richmond is a clear sign that occupiers and some investors are taking advantage of what many see as the bottom of real estate prices that fell during the “great recession,” Grubb & Ellis/Harrison & Bates said in a statement Wednesday.

In some cases, prices had declined by more than 30 percent.

The firm, along with data from public municipalities and CoStar Group, reported overall market sales of 52 office properties, at an average price of $74 per square foot, and a total volume of $76.2 million in 2010. That compared to 32 sales in 2009, with an average sales price of $117 per square foot, and a total volume of $24.1 million.

On the retail side, the market saw 69 sales, compared to 41 in 2009, for a total volume of $141.3 million. Also, there were closings on 52 industrial properties at an average rate of $24 per square foot and a total sales volume of $105 million. The total was double $55.9 million in 2009, which resulted from the sale of 39 properties at an average price of $40 per square foot.

Foreclosed property sales also were higher last year, with 10 sales compared to four in 2009. The report looked at property sales of more than $250,000.

More favorable underwriting for financing and rising demand sparked by general business growth is helping to drive sales, according to Grubb & Ellis/Harrison & Bates. 

State economic development officials reported earlier this week that the number of new, active prospects looking to open or expand operations in Virginia was up 24 percent over the last two months. 

Editor’s Note: An earlier version of this story incorrectly attributed all the sales to Grubb & Ellis/Harrison & Bates. 


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