Charlotte Retail Market Report
Rapid In-Migration Boosts Demand for Essential
Goods and Services in Suburbs
Robust demographics drive vacancy to multi-decade low. Charlotte is forecast to rank sixth among major U.S. metros by rate of population growth in 2023, boosting demand for goods and services as these new arrivals settle into the area. This year’s largest tenant move-ins reflect an expanding residential headcount; supermarkets and hardware chains are among the necessity retailers joining multiple fitness centers leasing big-box spaces. The solid absorption figures seen since late 2020 have also continued so far this year. More than half a million square feet was absorbed on a net basis in the first three months of 2023 alone, facilitating a 3.6 percent vacancy rate — the tightest level seen in the metro since before the financial crisis. Limited speculative development indicates these conditions will continue. Of the 577,000 square feet underway as of June, more than 60 percent was accounted for.