Newmark Grubb ACRES Releases Market Report

Salt Lake City— Newmark Grubb ACRES (NGA) announces the release of its 2019 Utah Mid-Year Market Report. Through the first half of 2019, the Wasatch Front commercial real estate market continued its strong performance with high transaction dollar volume and construction activity, historically low vacancies, and strong positive net absorption. 

For the industrial market, the first half of 2019 recorded lower than normal net absorption along the Wasatch Front, a direct result of the scarcity of available inventory. For the second half of 2019, net absorption is projected to meet or exceed that of the second halves of both 2017 and 2018 as new deliveries and active negotiations complete before the end of the year. That equilibrium has facilitated rent growth across almost all Class A and Class B space in the market. Barring a radical oversupply or precipitous drop in demand from global economic issues, lease rates and sale prices will likely continue to trend upward.

Office construction is flourishing along the Wasatch Front, with 3.8 million square feet currently underway. Some developers are bullish enough to build on a speculative basis without any pre-leasing. The amount of space that is being pre-leased, both before and after the start of construction, indicates that the risky venture is paying off for some developers. The Tech Corridor experienced the biggest drop in direct vacancy – down 35 basis points year-over-year – and now stands at 3.56 percent. As a result of lease rate growth driven by strong economic fundamentals in Utah, many tenants are taking advantage of low interest rates and looking to buy their own buildings to occupy, pushing the number and prices of office owner-user sales higher.

Redevelopment projects incorporating new and varied uses have become an increasingly significant part of the retail landscape. Several established projects in the market have undergone, or are in the process of, redevelopment to both re-tenant and incorporate non-traditional uses. Restaurants are still a vibrant retail sector, with a healthy mix of national operators as well as home-grown concepts thriving in modestly priced locations. Many grocers have cautious expansion plans with a focus on moving toward smaller formats in densely populated areas — a move that has proved successful for non-food retailers.

The strength of Utah’s diverse economy has pushed institutional investor demand for assets far beyond the available supply of product. Overall, the number of sale transactions fell 25.6 percent from the last half of 2018. Office investment sales were the only property type to show a substantial increase in sales activity, up 111.7 percent year-over-year in transaction dollar volume. With cap rates compressing across the board, investors are chasing the cap yield present in office product, which is harder to find in other product types. The average price per square foot of all sold investment properties now averages $264.95 per square foot and has been climbing every year since 2012. 

The cost of raw land continues to increase across all property use types, and prices will continue to climb, as more regional and national developers move in and compete with local developers for available sites. Demand for multifamily land, both apartment and townhomes, as well as residential land is extremely high. With the nation-wide pressure for more housing, not enough homes or rental housing are being built to keep up with demand, resulting in the continued increasing land and home prices.

NGA Research, with contributions from Kyle Roberts, Jackie Kingston, Skyler Peterson, Collin Perkins, Nick Teseros, Chris Falk, Ben Richardson, John Owens, Rick Davidson generates the 2019 Mid-Year Market Report.

About Newmark Grubb Acres
Newmark Grubb ACRES was founded in Salt Lake City, Utah in 1998 as a full-service commercial real estate brokerage. It has since grown to include property management, property maintenance and global corporate services. For nearly two decades Newmark Grubb ACRES has been an industry leader and has consistently been recognized as one of Utah’s top commercial real estate brokerages.

About Newmark Knight Frank
Newmark Knight Frank (“NKF”), operated by Newmark Group, Inc. (“Newmark Group”) (NASDAQ: NMRK), is one of the world’s leading and most trusted commercial real estate advisory firms, offering a complete suite of services and products for both owners and occupiers. Together with London-based partner Knight Frank and independently-owned offices, NKF’s 16,000 professionals operate from approximately 430 offices on six continents. NKF’s investor/owner services and products include investment sales, agency leasing, property management, valuation and advisory, diligence, underwriting, government-sponsored enterprise lending, loan servicing, debt and structured finance and loan sales. Occupier services and products include tenant representation, real estate management technology systems, workplace and occupancy strategy, global corporate services consulting, project management, lease administration and facilities management. For further information, visit

Discussion of Forward-Looking Statements about Newmark Group
Statements in this document regarding Newmark Group that are not historical facts are “forward-looking statements” that involve risks and uncertainties, which could cause actual results to differ from those contained in the forward-looking statements. Except as required by law, Newmark Group undertakes no obligation to update any forward-looking statements. For a discussion of additional risks and uncertainties, which could cause actual results to differ from those contained in the forward-looking statements, see Newmark Group’s Securities and Exchange Commission filings, including, but not limited to, any updates to such risk factors contained in subsequent Forms 10-K, 10-Q, or Forms 8-K.

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