What’s Happening in Philadelphia Commercial Real Estate

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Philadelphia, the City of Brotherly Love, stands proud as one of the nation’s most popular commercial real estate hubs for investment and leasing.

Pennsylvania’s largest metropolitan serves as one of the oldest cities in the United States. In recent years, the city has experienced a swell of development and repurposing projects, attracting investors and potential tenants alike. Crexi connects individuals seeking Philadelphia commercial real estate with thousands of properties and the tools they need to analyze and transact investments.

Philadelphia brokers and agents nationwide representing Philadelphia properties can harness Crexi’s platform and suite of sale and leasing tools to build their network and complete more deals. At the time of publishing, Crexi has helped brokers facilitate more than $300 billion in commercial property transactions and represented over $1.2 trillion in listings.

Brokers nationwide and those specializing in Philadelphia can utilize Crexi’s robust lead management and listing tools to expand their network, save time, and close more deals. As of this writing, Crexi’s CRE tools have navigated over $300 billion in commercial property transactions to close and listed more than $1.2 trillion in assets.

Crexi is proud to serve Philadelphia, Bensalem, Levittown, Langhorne, Fairless Hills, and the surrounding communities as the area’s fastest-growing online CRE platform.

The State of Philadelphia Commercial Real Estate 

Developers and investors are betting on the long-term recovery in the region, with several major commercial real estate projects in Philadelphia currently underway. 

The $2.5 billion Philadelphia Navy Yard project will include the construction of 3,000 residential units and 3 million square feet of office, retail, hotel, and maker-space in the city’s south side. The $22.5 million Capital Seniors Housing project was recently completed in Exton, while Frankel Enterprises is undertaking a $7 million affordable housing project to meet overwhelming demand.

Philadelphia is the largest city in Pennsylvania and the urban, cultural, and economic center of the Delaware Valley. Founded nearly 350 years ago by William Penn, Philly is also one of the oldest municipalities in the US.

Population and job growth in the metropolitan area are rising year after year, with a diverse economy driven by key business sectors, including biotechnology and health care, financial services, food processing, information technology, oil refining, and trade and transportation.

Philadelphia Regional Breakdown

The Philadelphia-Harrisburg corridor continues to drive population growth in Pennsylvania. Over the past ten years, Greater Philadelphia and the southeastern part of the state have grown by nearly 2.0% overall:

  • Philadelphia is home to almost 1.6 million residents, with more than 6.1 million people living in the Greater Philadelphia region.
  • Philadelphia is the eighth largest MSA in the US and one of the oldest municipalities in the country.
  • The population of Philadelphia grew slightly last year, with the city posting population growth for 12 years in a row.
  • Primary counties in the metropolitan area include Philadelphia, Montgomery, Bucks, Burlington, and Camden.
  • The median age in Philadelphia is 38.9 years, with 52% of the population between 20 and 59.

Despite the pandemic, employment growth in metropolitan Philadelphia was 1.64%, with the region home to over 3 million employees. In fact, over the past several years, the Philadelphia economy has been expanding, with the trade and transportation, financial activities, and education and health service sectors showing the most promising signs of growth:

  • GDP of the Philadelphia-Camden-Wilmington MSA is more than $454.6 billion and has grown by over 37% over the last decade.
  • Employment in the Philadelphia metropolitan area grew by 1.64%, while median household incomes rose by nearly 3.2% over the past 12 months.
  • The unemployment rate in Philadelphia is 11.2%, according to the most recent survey by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
  • Per capita income in Philadelphia is $40,930, while median household income in the metropolitan area is $74,533.
  • Notable businesses located in the Philadelphia region include Aramark, Cigna, Colonial Penn, Comcast, GlaxoSmithKline, Pep Boys, Philadelphia Stock Exchange, and The Vanguard Group.
  • Energy, financial and professional services, information technology, life sciences, and logistics are among the key industry sectors in Philadelphia.
  • Largest employers in metropolitan Philadelphia include ACCU Staffing, Comcast Corporation, Thomas Jefferson University and Jefferson Health, and the University of Pennsylvania and Health System.
  • University of Pennsylvania, Temple University, Drexel University, and Thomas Jefferson University are among the nearly 100 universities and colleges located in Greater Philadelphia.
  • Over 91% of Philadelphia residents are high school graduates or higher, while 39% hold a bachelor’s degree or an advanced degree.
  • Metropolitan Philadelphia is a key business hub located midway between Washington, DC, and New York City.
  • 40% of the US population lives within a one-day drive of Philadelphia, and 60% of the US and Canada’s population is within a two-hour flight.

The transportation infrastructure of the Philadelphia region includes three major Interstate Highways, the New Jersey and Pennsylvania Turnpikes, the Port of Philadelphia, and six international airports, including the second-largest shipping hub for UPS.

Philadelphia Industrial Market

Tenants are chasing industrial space for lease in Philadelphia wherever it can be found as the demand for industrial inventory in Greater Philadelphia continues to outpace supply. For nine quarters in a row, the industrial market has posted positive net absorption, with 500,000 SF of absorption gains, strong rent growth, and record development levels:

  • Total industrial inventory: 487,000,000 SF
  • Average asking rent: $8.02 per SF per year, net
  • Vacancy rate: 4.7%
  • Absorption: 1,500,000 SF Q1 2021
  • New construction: 16,300,000 SF under construction as of Q1 2021
  • Largest industrial submarkets: Philadelphia County, Montgomery County, Lancaster County, Bucks County

Discover Philadelphia industrial space for rent.

Philadelphia Office Market

Philadelphia office leasing activity in both the CBD and suburban office submarkets is down significantly from last year, posting double-digit declines. As landlords scramble to fill space tenants, Philadelphia could be the ideal market for tenants looking for office space to lease:

  • Total office inventory: 109,272,253 SF
  • Average asking rents: $30.36 per SF per year, full-service gross
  • Overall vacancy rate: 15.1%
  • Absorption: – 1,275,377 SF 2020
  • New construction: 2,190,000 SF of office space under construction
  • Largest office submarkets: West Market, King of Prussia, Blue Bell/Plymouth Meeting, Bucks County

Discover Philadelphia office space for lease. 

Philadelphia Retail Market

As with many cities across the US, COVID-19 hit the Philadelphia retail with a one-two punch. However, local commercial real estate experts predict the demand for retail space in Philly will bounce back due to the strong demographics and the resiliency of Philadelphia: 

  • Total retail inventory: 123,618,390 SF
  • Average asking rent: $19.83 per SF per year, NNN
  • Total vacancy rate: 8.3%
  • Net absorption: – 75,144 SF Q4 2020
  • New construction: 27,907 SF delivered YTD 2020 with 238,854 SF under construction
  • Largest retail submarkets: Suburban PA Counties, Central Pennsylvania, Southern New Jersey

Discover Philadelphia retail property for lease.

Philadelphia Multifamily Market

Multifamily property in Philadelphia should continue to see high occupancy through 2021 and beyond. Unlike many other markets in the US, the Philadelphia apartment market has seen a steady stream of demand and absorption, generating a steady stream of interest from multifamily investors in metropolitan Philadelphia:

  • Total housing units: 2,507,446
  • Renter occupied: 33%
  • Average effective rent: $1,452 per month
  • Average cap rate: 6.0%
  • Average price per unit: $162,000
  • Vacancy rate: 6.8%
  • New construction: 6,778 units delivered in 2020
  • Most active submarkets: Chester County, Norristown-Upper Merion-Lower Merion
  • Median household income: $74,533
  • Per capita income: $40,930

Discover Philadelphia multifamily property for sale.

How Crexi Connects Buyers and Tenants to Philadelphia Commercial Real Estate

Investors and tenants eyeing Philadelphia as the home of their next commercial property can find their perfect match using Crexi’s straightforward search functionality and numerous listings.

Interested tenants or buyers can browse through hundreds of Philadelphia commercial properties for lease or sale in a handful of clicks. Crexi’s robust search tools empower buyers or tenants to quickly narrow searches by square footage, price or rate per square foot, asset type and subtypes, cap rate, vacancy, and neighborhood. 

When they’re ready to take the next step, buyers and tenants can directly connect with the listing’s brokers to learn more. Browsing property seekers can also download PDFs and flyers and even submit a letter of intent (LOI) on the property page.

Intelligence Equips Investors with Data and Market Knowledge 

Data and research are essential tools for any commercial real estate investor’s arsenal. Crexi Intelligence equips Philadelphia property seekers with up-to-date, relevant in-market data to identify and analyze promising properties.

Intelligence features a library of millions of property records and sales comparables, as well as more than 50 MSA market reports. The Insights tab on every property page gives principals real-time data about any market — including Philadelphia — such as average asking price, square footage, demographic insights, and more. 

Intelligence is available to buyers, sellers, and tenants on a subscription basis.

How Philadelphia Brokers Thrive with Crexi

Philadelphia brokers market nearly 300 properties for sale and 900 listings for lease on Crexi within the city limits alone. Commercial agents in Philadelphia represent a hotspot of property opportunities, ready for investors to take advantage of the city’s growing population and expanding economy.

Philadelphia brokers harness Crexi’s broker tools to list the properties they represent to a national roster of active property seekers. A robust broker dashboard gives agents real-time insight into every lead that visits their pages, allowing them to engage and connect instantly.

Philadelphia commercial brokers can list properties across different asset classes, including: 

  • Multifamily developments
  • Retail properties
  • Industrial buildings
  • Land parcels
  • Offices
  • Hospitality
  • Mixed-Use buildings
  • Non-traditional properties such as self-storage, data centers, etc.

Philadelphia brokers use Crexi’s online tools to navigate their clients’ assets from the list to close, including file management and secure storage to process due diligence paperwork.

And while Crexi’s free broker tools are impressive, Crexi’s real advantages emerge with Sale PRO, Lease PRO, and All PRO

<pro dashboard screenshot>

Crexi PRO Dashboard 2020

Crexi’s All PRO Membership

Crexi PRO enhances Philadelphia brokers’ workflow with advanced tools designed to simplify pipelines and win more deals. PRO brokers enjoy access to highly detailed lead information, management, and reporting tools that allow them to prioritize connections and engage with the most valuable leads.

Brokers using PRO also receive preferential tile placement for their listings atop Crexi’s machine-learning-curated search pages. Weekly email blasts also connect PRO listings to relevant property seekers, winning a 10-15% higher engagement rate than industry benchmarks.

PRO users also enjoy Intelligence access as a part of the subscription, allowing them to enhance their in-market knowledge and provide further value for their clientele.

With Crexi PRO, brokers can easily connect with the over 146,000 leads who have sought Philadelphia properties in the last two years and the over 3 million leads across the nation who looked for property on Crexi in 2020.

On average, Crexi PRO brokers successfully acquire 125% more leads and close six to eight times more deals than non-PRO users. 
Contact support@crexi.com to learn more about All PRO.

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Shanti Ryle
Shanti Ryle

Content Marketing Manager

Shanti leads Crexi's content marketing strategies with 7+ years of content development experience, creating everything from blog posts to award-winning podcasts. Previously, she worked on content teams at Snapchat, Weedmaps, and HopSkipDrive as well as developed copy, articles, and media for freelance publications.

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