Office Leasing Activity Hits A Road Bump In Omaha and Nationally

In the fourth quarter of 2017, the Omaha office market experienced negative absorption for the first time in all of 2017. This was only the third quarter of negative absorption in the last three years. The total negative absorption for the fourth quarter of 2017 was 71,338 square feet which results in annual positive absorption of 135,383 square feet for the year. The total absorption of office space in 2017 was also the lowest amount of square feet since 2011, and lower than the average annual absorption over the last ten years of approximately 250,000 square feet. The negative absorption in the quarter impacted the vacancy rate resulting in an increase of 40 basis points bringing the overall vacancy rate to 11.1 percent; which remains well below the historical Omaha office vacancy rate. It should be noted the national office market also experienced negative absorption and increased vacancy in the fourth quarter of 2017.