The retail sector out-performed the office and industrial property segment in the first half of the year due to increased demand of retail space by companies, a report by Bard Real Estate has shown.
According to the Zimbabwe Property market report, the emergence of indigenous players in the retail sector had contributed significantly towards the strong performance.
“Food and associated sectors performed better in the first half compared to the office sector were a lot of vacancies were seen due to the low demand,” the report stated.
It pointed out the industrial sector recorded a low performance due to the closure of some companies in the country.
The report stated there had not been any major new property development and this had created supply constraints of both retail and industrial space.
Bard Real Estate said during the last six months the country experienced shortages of skills and capacity in the construction sector following years of inactivity, discouraging service rates increases from local authorities and resulting in high borrowing rates and low confidence in the sector.
In the half-year report vacancy rates in office buildings in Harare central business district were averaging between 10-15% while retail vacancy rates were nearly 0%.
The suburban areas vacancy rates were averaging 20% to 35%.
The report said the country was still trailing regional countries when it came to average rentals adding the country would likely see a surge in rentals in the next few years.