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Rising rents a sign office market recovering

Southern Nevada’s industrial segment has hogged the spotlight in recent months for its essentially full recovery.

The office market has a long way to go before it’s performing on a par with industrial real estate, but a new report gives the sector a nod for steady, if slow, progress.

Brokerage Avison Young’s Mid-Year 2015 Office Market Report shows a city chipping away at a major mountain of vacancies, thanks to little new construction, plus a bounceback among businesses that scaled back in the recession.

Local office vacancy dipped 0.8 percent to 18.6 percent year over year in the second quarter, Avison Young reported. Medical-office vacancy declined even more, falling to 16.1 percent. That was down from 17.8 percent in the second quarter of 2014.

About 100,000 square feet of office space was under construction in the second quarter, down from nearly 500,000 square feet in the market’s softest period of 2011.

Meanwhile, businesses that downsized during the downturn are beginning to recover and are reclaiming subleased space and cutting square footage on the market. Foreclosures and short sales are tapering as well.

With slumping construction and less space available for purchase, lease or sublease, demand is pushing up rents, Avison Young said. Asking net rent averaged about $19 per square foot in the second quarter, up from roughly $17 a year earlier. Class A rents in particular are gaining noticeably. That’s forcing some companies to relocate to more affordable Class B space — a reversal of the trading-up trend during the recession, when Class A spaces became more affordable to more businesses.

Avison Young’s brokers counted about 165 office leases and 120 sales in the first half of 2015. Most new-tenant activity happened in the south and southwest submarkets. Of those sales, 27 of them were medical-office buildings.

Another fun fact: Deals on office leases closed in the first half of the year averaged 5,000 square feet.

The biggest lease by size was UnitedHealth’s 98,000-square-foot lease at 4750 W. Oakey Blvd.

The next-largest deal was roughly a third that size: The University of Nevada School of Medicine took down 34,900 square feet at 1701 W. Charleston Blvd.

Solar City, the solar panel-leasing company that says it’s in a fight for its local survival as an NV Energy rebate program that supports it winds down, leased 22,000 square feet at 6611 S. Las Vegas Blvd., inside Town Square.

Educational symposium

The commercial real estate arm of the Greater Las Vegas Association of Realtors has scheduled a September educational event.

The Commercial Alliance Las Vegas will hold its 10th annual Commercial Alliance Educational Symposium on Sept. 11 from 7:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Gold Coast.

The symposium will offer classes for continuing-education credits on topics including commercial real estate skills and how global trends relate to real estate businesses. But its keynote event will be a lunchtime industry panel.

The panel will focus on a discussion billed as “Las Vegas Real Estate Legends — When Cocktail Napkins Were Contracts.” Panelists are scheduled to include longtime local real estate professional Kevin Buckley and prominent developer Mark Fine, who helped oversee the Green Valley and Summerlin master plans in their early days.

All-day admission for the event costs $99 for members of the commercial alliance and the Realtors’ association. For nonmembers, it’s $149.

For more information, call 702-784-5050.

Water donation

Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Nevada Properties donated 49,000 bottles of water to the Las Vegas Rescue Mission on Aug. 13. The water goes to help Southern Nevada’s homeless population during the hot summer months.

“We volunteer at the mission several times a year, so we know that the number of people who are coming in the summer months to get cool and stay hydrated is higher,” said organizer Diane Ray. “It is so important in the summer time to make sure our homeless individuals and families have enough water to stay healthy. Our extreme heat during the summer months makes this water so important for them.”

It’s the third year the 1,200-agent residential brokerage has given water to the homeless shelter.

The company also donates toiletries and blankets to the mission in the winter.

Deal at Cadence

Richmond American Homes has expanded its footprint at Henderson’s Cadence master plan.

The company took down a 23-acre parcel with 131 lots, bringing its total in the 13,250-home community to 57 acres with 352 homes.

The company’s 13 Cadence floor plans will start in the mid-$200,000s.

“It is an exciting time for Richmond American Homes, especially during our growth at Cadence,” said Nicole Bloom, the company’s senior vice president.

Richmond American hosted its official grand opening at Cadence on Aug. 22.

Other builders with open model homes at Cadence include Woodside Homes and Ryland Homes. Lennar is building Heritage, an active-adult community, inside the master plan, with models set to open in late 2015.

— The Sauter Multifamily Group of NAI Vegas marketed and sold Casino Center Apartments, a 75-unit apartment building at 1511-1521 Casino Center Blvd. The team guided the seller, TOD Las Vegas LLC, in the $1.85 million deal. The property’s buyer was J. Katz.

— Ron Aldinger of Vegas International Properties represented WMK Properties LLC in its $499,000 purchase of a 3,595-square-foot medical-office condominium at 7435 W. Azure Drive.

— Cathy Jones, Paul Miachika, Jessica Cegavske, Roy Fritz and Riley Foley of Sun Commercial Real Estate helped negotiate the $360,000 sale of a 4,477-square-foot industrial property at 1995 Whitney Mesa Drive. The team represented the seller, TCWM LLC, while Elite Realty’s Robert Schlegel guided buyers Claude Raffin and Jon Gathercole.

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