Try our corporate solution for free!

Retail real estate market in the United States - statistics & facts

In 2020, the retail sector in the United States underwent a challenging year. As the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic unfolded, many retailers had to close temporarily to contain the spread of the virus. Businesses faced a dramatic fall in foot traffic and consumer spending. Furthermore, the pandemic accelerated the trend of increasing importance of e-commerce. During the peak of the first wave in the second quarter of 2020, the share of e-commerce sales reached over 16 percent of retail spending, a spike of four percent from the previous quarter.

Among the many impacts on the sector were delays in rent and mortgage payments, as well as store closures. In June 2020, the delinquency rate of retail real estate mortgages rose to 18 percent, the second highest after the hotel sector. In the first five months of the year, announced retail space closures in the United States measured 76.5 million square feet, two-thirds of all closures in the whole of 2019. Another impact was felt through rising vacancies. Between the first and the second quarter of 2020, retail vacancy rates doubled, reaching 20 percent. Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs) in the sector registered year-to-date return on equity (RoE) of -25.2 percent, the lowest among all types of commercial real estate. Nevertheless, these figures do not fully explain the different trends within individual retail sectors. For example, consumers redirected spending from food services to the grocery sector. Another winning sector was furniture and home improvement that benefitted from people undertaking various projects at home.

In 2020, the value of commercial real estate transactions decreased overall, but retail property transactions doubled, reaching over 29 billion U.S. dollars, or approximately seven percent of all commercial real estate transactions. The ten leading metropolitan areas attracted close to 13 billion U.S. dollars in retail real estate investments with the top three (Greater New York, Greater Los Angeles, and San Francisco Bay Area) drawing investments worth over 9.8 billion U.S. dollars. In terms of the number of deals that took place during the year, the leading markets were Los Angeles, Chicago, and Dallas.

Interesting statistics

In the following 4 chapters, you will quickly find the 26 most important statistics relating to "Retail real estate market in the U.S.".


Get in touch with us. We are happy to help.
Statista Locations
Contact Vayola Jocelyn
Vayola Jocelyn
Client Support Specialist– Contact (United States)

Mon - Fri, 9am - 6pm (EST)

Contact Ziyan Zhang
Ziyan Zhang
Customer Relations– Contact (Asia)

Mon - Fri, 11:30am - 10pm (IST)

Contact Kisara Mizuno
Kisara Mizuno
Customer Success Manager– Contact (Asia)

Mon - Fri, 9:30am - 5:30pm (JST)

Contact Lodovica Biagi
Lodovica Biagi
Director of Operations– Contact (Europe)

Mon - Fri, 9:30am - 5pm (GMT)

Contact Carolina Dulin
Carolina Dulin
Associate Director - LAC– Contact (Latin America)

Mon - Fri, 9am - 6pm (EST)