Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Dallas-Fort Worth sees gain in office leasing in '09

The Dallas-Fort Worth area will wind up with a significant gain in office leasing this year, according to one of the area's largest commercial real estate brokers.
CB Richard Ellis said Tuesday that the D-FW area has had more than 1.3 million square feet of net leasing this year.

That estimate is in sharp contrast to statistics from other real estate firms and analysts who say North Texas has seen a net decline in office tenants in 2009.
CB Richard Ellis' report will come as a big surprise in a market where many major office tenants have consolidated this year because of the recession.
The net leasing gain reported by the real estate firm is "significantly down from last year's year-to-date absorption of 2.8 million square feet," said CB Richard Ellis research coordinator Sarah Rochester.
"And we looked into why our numbers were so much higher, and some firms had counted signed leases as absorption in 2008 while we waited to count the absorption until they actually moved in during the first quarter of 2009," she said.
Office market reports can differ dramatically because each company counts the leasing and the geographic areas differently.
According to CB Richard Ellis, the two business districts that saw the most net leasing this year were South Fort Worth and Stemmons Freeway in Dallas – areas that usually don't see large office demands. Business expansions by Bank of America, Parkland Memorial Hospital and Southwest Airlines drove the Stemmons area gains, according to CB Richard Ellis.
Dallas' Uptown district and Las Colinas were also among the top office market performers this year, the international real estate service firm said.
CB Richard Ellis estimates that about 22.9 percent of the D-FW area's office market is now empty.
So far this year, other office market surveys have shown significant declines for the area.
Real estate firm Cushman & Wakefield of Texas reported almost 1.8 million square feet of negative office leasing in the D-FW area through the third quarter. And the brokerage company is expecting to detail further office demand declines at the end of the year.
And Grubb & Ellis Co. reported almost 500,000 square feet of office leasing declines through the third quarter. Steve Brown/Dallas Morning News
Annual net office leasing, including subleases
2006 3.9 million square feet
2007 2.9 million square feet
2008 2.8 million square feet
2009 1.3 million square feet
SOURCE: CB Richard Ellis