In a defiant stance against the pandemic, Halifax’s office market enjoyed a drop in vacancy between December 2019 and December 2020. But vacancy in the city’s warehouse market crept up, as did vacancy in the office markets for each of Saint John, Fredericton, Moncton, and St. John’s. Average net rental rates for office space, which are driven by the vacancy rate, albeit sometimes with a delayed reaction, declined only in St. John’s, with the other four office markets, and the Halifax warehouse market, seeing slight increases.
These are the conclusions from the latest rental market surveys completed by Halifax real estate counsellors Turner Drake & Partners Ltd. The surveys are thought to be the most comprehensive ever conducted in Atlantic Canada: a team of trained researchers collected rental, operating expense and vacancy data for 590 office and industrial buildings, some as small as 5,000 ft.², with an aggregate rentable area of over 30 million ft.².