Missoula’s Strong Job Growth Sustains Demand for Commercial Space
Missoula experienced job growth of 2.8% year-over-year from 2018 with growth projected (according to Moody’s Analytics) to continue in a more subdued fashion in 2020. This has translated into a 4.3% gain in personal income growth in Missoula thus far. That personal income growth has helped fuel the local economy in areas such as leisure/hospitality and healthcare. Expanded air travel capability (up 10% over 2018 so far) has also contributed to an increase in tourism dollars coming into Missoula’s economy.
Highly educated residents and affordable air travel will make it easier to attract new and relocating tech firms and the employees those companies need to succeed. Submittable, a Missoula grown company operating in the software development space, recently announced having raised $10 million more in capital backing with the intent to hire 150 more workers in the coming year.
As of the second quarter ending 2019, the amount of lease space absorbed for the entire year totaled approximately 222,292 total square feet with over 133,000 square feet absorbed in the first quarter alone. Leading the way as of the second quarter was the retail sector with 97,653 square feet absorbed. Much of this can be attributed to the former Herberger’s space in the mall leasing to Dillards (over 27,000 SF). The office sector followed with 86,384 square feet absorbed thanks to larger leases completed at Palmer Professional Park and an entire floor of the Radio Central Building downtown snagging new tenants. Lastly, 38,255 square feet of industrial space was eaten up in the Missoula market in the first half of 2019. This healthy activity has resulted in an increase in office and retail lease rates when compared to 2018 ending figures.
Sterling CRE Advisors helps businesses, investors and developers buy, sell and lease commercial and investment real estate in Missoula, Kalispell and Western Montana.
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