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Warehouses are now worth more than office buildings.
Giant, high-tech warehouses, to be precise. These “big box” affairs are defined as having at least 200,000 square feet (18,600 square meters) and 28-foot (8.5-meter) ceilings, in a report by Colliers International Group Inc. that calls out the surge in their value.
Colliers looked at 14 North American markets (all but one, Toronto, in the U.S.) and found that such warehouses sold last year at an average capitalization rate of 5.8 percent. That’s comfortably lower than the 6.7 percent cap rate for U.S. office space, including suburban and rural properties, and neck and neck with offices in central business districts, at 5.7 percent. Cap rates, which measure yield, fall as asset values rise.
These are not the sleepy warehouses of old. Distribution centers today are hives of activity. As e-commerce companies race to get that Original EggMazing Easter Egg Decorator Kit to your doorstep ever faster, they need sophisticated equipment to assemble orders and a swelling workforce to manage it all.
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