How did 2018 stack up for commercial real estate buildings in Clark County? Combining three sectors – office, retail and industrial – there were 142 transactions on buildings sold for $1.0 million and above. This generated sales of $174 million. Although it did not measure up to 2017, which set a breathtaking pace with 187 transactions and $229 million and was the second highest year of the past decade.
Here are a few highlights and statistics to put it into perspective. Looking at larger transactions gives us a wider range of properties that are multi- tenant or generate significant revenue to attract larger investors.
In the office sector, the largest transaction was the Stone Mill Office Complex up on 124th and Mill Plain Boulevard. This is a property that has been on and off the market for several years, with several different brokerage firms, and had experienced significant vacancy rates. There were two buildings that make up the complex with a total 120,000 square feet. Price of the two buildings was $15.2 million, which reflects a dollar per square-foot ratio rising significantly in 2018 for this group of properties.
Several locally owned and developed office buildings changed hands this year. The Timbers near Vancouver Mall, Heron Gate out at the Ridgefield Junction and Ninth Street Medical Plaza along 112th near Evergreen Memorial Gardens.
In the industrial sector, the largest transaction was 5701 NE Fourth Plain Blvd. This property had been the location for Kyocera operations since the 1980s. They were one of the early CREDC recruitment wins in those years. It appears Kyocera has now purchased the property and is staying for the long haul.
In the retail sector, the largest transaction was a $7 million deal with the Self-Service Furniture Store that was part of Vancouver Plaza. The Hannah family of auto dealerships continues to expand their foot print in this core area, which has been experiencing some transition over the past several years. It and the Vancouver Mall remain commercial hubs within Vancouver, even with the continued expansion on the east side.
This was the seventh year in a row that sales had topped $100 million in this category of properties, and the fourth year in a row we had topped 100 transactions. Both are solid indicators that Clark County is well regarded as a desirable destination for commercial real estate investment dollars from both local sources, and out of state capital. We expect that trend to continue in 2019.
Jim West is with Jim West Commercial Real Estate and Zenith Properties NW, and is also the Board president of the Southwest Washington Contractors Association.