2019 Knoxville Commercial Real Estate Update

DPM Care was founded over 20 years ago in Knoxville. So, naturally, we’re partial to the city.

Knoxville has seen steady growth over the past few years, and it’s been fun to watch.

Keep reading to learn about the city’s growth and what you might be able to expect in the coming year.

Population Has Been Growing Steadily

According to data from World Population Review, Knoxville’s population grew .53% from 2015 to 2016 and 1.06% from 2016 to 2017.

While we didn’t locate any official data on the city’s 2018 population, that number is estimated at 187,347 — way up from 2010’s official Census population number of 178,874.

In October 2018, USA Today noted Knoxville as one of the Top 50 cities that has experienced “the largest net increase in population as a result of migration between 2010 and 2017.”

Unemployment Continues to Drop

Knoxville’s job market has been strong for years.

Unemployment has steadily dropped since 2013 (when it was at 7.2%). As of 2018, the city’s unemployment rate sits at 3.3%, which is 0.6 percentage points below the national average of 3.9%.

Commercial and Residential Real Estate Are Thriving

According to Zillow, Knoxville’s “Market Temperature” is rated “Very Hot.”

An area’s Market Temperature is based on:

  1. List-to-sale price ratio
  2. Prevalence of price cuts on home listings
  3. Time-on-market

Beyond that, Zillow reports:

“Knoxville home values have gone up 10.0% over the past year, and Zillow predicts they will rise 6.5% within the next year.”

In fact, in May 2018, WVLT reported:

“The demand for homes is so high, if no more homes were to hit the market in the next two months, there would essentially be no more homes to buy.”

But what about the commercial market?

It seems to be doing well.

According to Rofo, “there are currently 712 office spaces for lease, 131 warehouse spaces for rent, 413 retail spaces, and 112 shared office spaces (also known as co-working spaces and executive suites) with 162 real estate professionals to help you find the right space for you. Sizes range from 436 square feet up to 262,231 square feet. Commercial leasing rates range from $1 per square foot per year and up depending on location, type of space, and condition of the space.”

Beyond that, as of April 13, 2019, the Knoxville Area Association of REALTORS Commercial Investment MLS reports 2,059 property listings and 10,098 sale/lease transactions in the greater Knoxville area.

But it’s not just locals who recognize Knoxville’s potential. Out-of-towners are investing in commercial real estate here as well.

Knox News reported on this phenomena in November, 2018, stating:

“Stability has long been a key in commercial real estate investment and that trend is driving more investors to the market in some of Knoxville’s most prominent buildings: Viking Partners from Ohio bought Parkside Plaza I in Turkey Creek in April; Biltmore Development from Asheville, North Carolina purchased Western Plaza in 2013 and is completing the redevelopment of the center.”

Two current examples of Knoxville’s growth are the $15 million shopping and restaurant development in West Knoxville and the continued growth in the Kingston Pike area.

Knoxville’s Growth is Challenging, but Beneficial

And, although growth is exciting, it comes with challenges. One of those being managing traffic in the city.
But, despite challenges, this growth is important for the area.

In an April 2019 community meeting, Knox News reported that Jeff Welch, transportation planning organization director for Knox Planning noted:

“We’re a growing community and we have to accommodate that growth…we can’t stop it. The better question is how can we manage it better? If you stop growth, you become a stagnant area…”

In all, Knoxville’s growth is slow, but the city has been trending in a positive direction since 2010.

Both community organizers and out-of-towners have recognized this. And, as locals, despite its challenges, we’re happy to see it.