Commercial real estate investment hits record highs

WATERLOO REGION — Commercial real estate investment is expected to hit a record $58.5 billion in 2022, up from $57.9 billion last year, according to CBRE’s annual market trends report.

As the pandemic slowly recedes, the downtown commercial real estate vacancy rate has fallen two percentage points, available industrial space remains nearly non-existent, and the area’s booming multi-residential sector will remain attractive for investors from outside the region.

The caution of the past two years will be replaced by increasingly large transactions for office space, “particularly from technology companies as the market stabilizes in the year ahead,” the CBRE report says. .

“The turnkey spaces and new offering delivered during the last development cycle will begin to gain momentum as businesses and employees emphasize the need for top-notch products and equipment for their eventual return to the office.”

The boom in the real estate market is reflected in the industrial sector, where the vacancy rate is below 1%. Industrial land now sells for almost a million dollars an acre.

“Waterloo Region effectively ran out of industrial inventory in 2021 as users from the GTA and Western Canada flocked to the region,” the report said.

“Demand for industrial assets has continued to push prices to new highs and is also not expected to slow.”

Lengthy delays for planning approvals and servicing could drive up industrial land prices in years to come, the report said.

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