The Central Florida retail market remained adaptable to the rapid changes in consumer behavior, increased business closures
and overall uncertainty during the pandemic. Sectors vulnerable to market swings such as retail trade and tourism responded
negatively throughout 2020, adding more than 500,000 sq. ft. of space to the market and pushing the vacancy rate as high as 6.4%.
However, once market restrictions lifted, recovery started, and throughout 2021 over 950,000 sq. ft. of retail space was absorbed.
The vacancy rate for first-generation space fell to 2.6% throughout the market, a decline of 5.7 percentage points over three years.
Asking rental rates rose 17% during that period, ranging from $25.00 to $28.00 per sq. ft. Second-generation vacancy declined for
the fifth consecutive quarter, ending 2021 at 5.4%. Tenant activity amongst space between 1,000 – 3,000 sq. ft. remained robust,
and with continued population growth and strong market fundamentals, the retail market recovery will continue throughout 2022.