New Haven-Fairfield County Office Market Report
Southern Connecticut Draws New Companies; Rising Demand and Limited Construction Reduce Vacancy
A historically modest construction pipeline aids vacancy and rent growth. More companies are opening offices in southern Connecticut, taking advantage of nearby high-quality universities and major population centers. Henkel is one such example. It relocated its North American consumer goods division from Scottsdale, Arizona, to Stamford last year. Cable company Charter is also contributing to rising office demand in the city. The firm has been growing rapidly since its move from St. Louis in 2012 and is building a new headquarters here for 2020. There are several deliveries scheduled for 2019 as well, located near major transit routes outside Norwalk, Milford, and New Haven. Total completions outnumber those from last year but are subdued this cycle, directing much of the region’s leasing activity toward existing space. As a result, vacancy is falling for the second year in a row, with availability lower in the smaller office submarket of New Haven County. Fairfield County, meanwhile, has a vacancy rate just under 20 percent, but as that measure continues to drop this year it will incite growth in asking rents.