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Survey: Retail vacancy dropped in 2012

Data reflect stronger regional market, report’s author says

The amount of vacant retail estate space in the Dayton area dropped for the second consecutive year in 2012, according to a survey released Wednesday.

The 2012 Greater Dayton Retail Market Study prepared by Miller Valentine GEM Real Estate Group showed that 14.6 percent of retail space in the Dayton region was vacant in 2012, down from 15.6 percent in 2011 and 16.6 percent in 2010. The regional numbers include Springfield, Lebanon, Middletown, Troy, Piqua and Sidney.

Figures for the immediate Dayton area were even more encouraging, with the retail vacancy rate dropping to 13 percent in 2012 from 15 percent in 2011 and 16.3 percent in 2010.

The survey results “demonstrate a strengthening of both the area and regional retail market,” Miller Valentine GEM officials said in the report. GEM President Dave Dickerson said in an interview that the study mirrors the recovery of the national economy, and he expects a slow, cautious continuation of that trend in early 2013.

The real estate resources company sampled 267 retail facilities totaling more than 25 million square feet across the region during the third quarter of 2012 and concluded that more than 272,000 square feet of retail space were absorbed and therefore removed from the “vacant” category during 2012.

Of the nine sub-markets sampled by Miller Valentine GEM, only two — the Upper Valley segment that includes Troy, Piqua, Tipp City and Sidney — and the Lebanon-Middletown markets showed an increase in vacancy rates. The Dayton East market had the lowest vacancy rate at 9 percent, while the Lebanon-Middletown market recorded the highest vacancy rate at 32.2 percent.

The survey was compiled from property owners, property managers, leasing agents, inspections and public records, the real estate services company said.

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