Charleston Commercial Real Estate

Charleston’s commercial real estate landscape has exhibited strong momentum, fueled by the region’s robust economic expansion, population growth, and increasing investor demand.

Industrial Market

Charleston’s industrial market remains a top performer, driven by the area’s strategic port location and thriving manufacturing and logistics sectors. The overall industrial vacancy rate was just 2.1%, with net absorption totaling over 2.3 million SF for the year. Rental rates have climbed steadily, with the average triple-net asking rent reaching $9.25 per SF, up 12.1% year-over-year. Major developments like the 1.1 million SF Palmetto Logistics Park are underway to meet high occupier demand.

Office Market

The office sector in Charleston has remained relatively healthy, with tightening vacancies in certain submarkets. Data shows the overall vacancy rate was 11.4% in Q4 2023, down from 12.2% a year earlier. However, the Peninsula submarket saw its vacancy drop to 7.8% as tenants targeted Charleston’s urban core. Average asking rents were $35.67 per SF gross for Class A space, with premium rates on the Peninsula exceeding $40 per SF.

Retail Market

Charleston’s retail market has exhibited resilience, with an overall vacancy rate of 4.3% as of Q4 2023 per CBRE’s report. Grocery-anchored and experiential retail destinations have been the strongest performers, while big box vacancies have risen. Average triple-net asking rents were $22.50 per SF for anchors and $28 per SF for small shop space. New mixed-use projects like the WestEdge development are adding retail inventory.

Multifamily Market

Apartment fundamentals in Charleston have remained robust. Data from RealPage shows the metro occupancy rate was 95.1% in Q4 2023, with annual effective rent growth of 5.8%. Over 3,500 new units were delivered in 2023, with another 6,000 units under construction. Urban core areas like Downtown Charleston have captured significant rental demand and new development.

Hotel & Hospitality Market

Charleston’s hotel and tourism sector has rebounded strongly post-pandemic. According to STR, revenue per available room (RevPAR) increased 17.2% year-over-year through Q3 2023, reaching $147.83 – one of the highest RevPAR figures nationally. The metro’s occupancy rate averaged 76.4% over the same period. Several new hotels opened in 2023, including the Grand Bohemian Charleston and the Curio Westbrook Resort, adding over 500 keys.

Self-Storage Market

The self-storage sector in Charleston has exhibited healthy fundamentals. Industry reports show the metro area contained over 7 million square feet of self-storage space across 220 facilities as of early 2024. Physical occupancy averaged 91.2%, with street rates for 10×10 climate-controlled units around $165 per month. Development has been active but measured, with around 400,000 SF of new supply delivered in 2023.


Why Charleston for Your Next CRE Move?

SVN Blackstream advisors can help you answer the question. Charleston’s commercial real estate market continues to benefit from the region’s diverse economic drivers, tourism appeal, and residential growth. While certain sectors face supply-side pressures, the overall market outlook remains positive, supported by Charleston’s business-friendly environment and quality of life amenities attracting new companies and residents.

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