Canadian Manufacturing

Real estate in Buffalo-Niagara—three common questions from expanding businesses

by Carolyn Powell   

Canadian Manufacturing
Exporting & Importing Operations Sales & Marketing Aerospace Automotive Cleantech Food & Beverage expand to the US Exporting Invest Buffalo Niagara real estate

Market reports and guidance from economic development agency help Canadian manufacturers set up shop in the US

Sponsored article by Invest Buffalo Niagara

Real estate is a hot topic for international companies considering a Buffalo Niagara business expansion. Business owners might not be familiar with our region’s availability of commercial properties, averages sales rate or current real estate trends.

Most frequently asked questions:

  • How does Buffalo Niagara compare to the national U.S. real estate market?
  • How are real estate prices trending locally?
  • Is there a shortage of properties that tenants and buyers are competing for?

Our partner CBRE|Buffalo, and its annual MarketView report does a great job of addressing these questions. This publication summarizes the real estate market in Buffalo Niagara. Listed below are excerpts from the Annual End of Year 2015 report.

Industrial market

The 2015 Buffalo industrial market experienced a measurable decrease in the overall availability (vacancy) rate, dropping from 4.5 percent to 3.6 percent, with a substantial 2,707,651 sq. ft. of positive absorption.

This is the fourth consecutive year demand has remained strong and has outpaced supply, resulting in lower availability rates. This trend is expected to continue in 2016 due to the lack of new construction in the pipeline.

Nationwide, availability rates continued to decrease year-over-year with the national availability rate falling to 9.6 percent in Q3 2015. The national market has now experienced 24 consecutive quarters of availability rate decline and this rate is at its lowest since Q3 2001.

For Buffalo/Erie County, 2015 marks the 11th consecutive year the industrial market availability rate has remained below the national average.

Office market

The Buffalo office market vacancy rate decreased this year to 13.5 percent, a 0.5 percent decrease from last year’s 14 percent. This brings Buffalo back in line with the US office vacancy of 13.4 percent. Nationally, downtown markets are seeing significant peaks in performance and this has also been the case in downtown Buffalo.

Despite large blocks of office space in older inventory, construction and tenant active was significant with a large amount of pre-committed new space coming online. Just under 500,000 sq. ft. of new office inventory was added this year, almost all occurring in the downtown market.

The anticipation of city projects was visible through impressive demand, leaving limited amounts of vacancy as new projects were completed and space was absorbed. Some projects under construction were slowed by 2014’s harsh winter, but will come to fruition in 2016. New construction will be seen throughout 2016 as 350,000 sq. ft. of office inventory is currently under construction or planned.

Interested companies can search Invest Buffalo Niagara’s Commercial Listing System or view Featured Properties on our website,

Invest Buffalo Niagara serves as a single point of entry for economic development inquires and offers a comprehensive suite of services to companies and consultants evaluating the area:

  • Confidential and custom site location assistance
  • Labor market analysis and demographics
  • Tailored market research
  • Detailed, comprehensive site/building information
  • Facilitation of state and local incentive programming
  • Personal community and site tours
  • Introductions to professional services providers and partners
  • Meetings with community and business leaders
  • Assistance with workforce and recruitment training needs

For additional information about the Buffalo Niagara real estate market, contact Carolyn Powell, Business Development Manager with Invest Buffalo Niagara at (716) 842-1357 x104 or

Carolyn Powell is Business Development Manager with Invest Buffalo Niagara, a non-profit, privately-funded economic development organization focused on job creation in the eight counties of Western New York. Its mission is to attract new employers to the Buffalo Niagara region through outreach to growing companies around the world. Visit for more information.


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