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The first quarter of this year has seen vacancy rates for Canadian office space drop from 10.1 percent to 9.3 percent, according to new research from real estate giant CB Richard Ellis (CBRE).
This year tenants have leased a total of 704,331 square feet of office space. This is in comparison to the 441,310 they leased last year.
John O’Bryan, vice-chairman of CBRE, said: “We’ve had a relatively uneventful quarter.
“Each market has its own nuances, but the national trend is positive absorption and lower vacancy rates with steady rental growth.”
According to the report, lower rents and better amenities are part of the reason why occupancy rates have risen. Additionally, the relative strength of the Canadian economy has also played a part.
“We’re seeing no letup in demand from investors in the Canadian commercial real estate market,” Mr. O’Bryan added.
“They’re feeling comfortable about acquiring additional assets because the economic fundamentals in Canada are strong and interest rates are compelling.”
In Vancouver vacancy rates dropped from 10 percent in the first quarter of last year to 9.1 percent in the first quarter of this year, while in Calgary it fell from 15 percent to 12 percent.
Toronto, the biggest city on Canada’s East coast, saw the vacancy rate fall from 8.7 percent in quarter one of 2010 to 9.6 percent last quarter.
Recently the Bank of Canada said that businesses should be boosted by the strong Canadian dollar and that businesses would be able to raise productivity.
However it also warned that exporters may not see a reduction in pressure as the Canadian economy grows.
Jean Boivin, deputy governor of the Canadian central bank, said recently: “The fact that we have recently seen a strong dollar has played an important role in the performance of exports.”