Recently, Grand Rapids ranked 6th most competitive rental market in the country. This can be attributed to lower than U.S. average cost of living, rising population and income trends, employment growth, a starving supply pipeline, and many other factors. Year-over-year rent growth in the market has exhibited 10.9% and shows no signs of slowing down. The market demonstrates a very strong occupancy and is projected to continue this path in the coming years. According to a housing assessment study by Housing Next, the city of Grand Rapids will need approximately 9,000 new units by 2025 to support population growth.
It is no surprise that Grand Rapids has become a location of choice for businesses from around the world. The access to affordable commercial space, a highly skilled workforce, and proximity to major economic markets have all contributed to this desirability. Grand Rapids has a highly diverse economic base, with major industries being manufacturing and life sciences. The area has more manufacturing jobs per capita than any large metro area in the U.S. and is home to some of the nation’s largest industry concentrations, including metals, plastics, medical devices, and much more. Major employers have planted their flags in Grand Rapids, including Accrisure and Perrigo Pharmaceuticals. Spectrum Health, the state’s largest employer, is well underway with multiple developments in the downtown area.
One of Spectrum’s notable developments is The Center for Innovation & Transformation. This development will house over 1,200 employees and will provide a training/learning center in the new first-floor meeting space that holds up to 500 people. The development will also feature a 240,000 SF addition to the hospital. This is just one of many developments underway in Grand Rapids.
The future is bright for Grand Rapids as it could be the next big tech hub in the U.S. The economic developer, The Right Place, evaluated many big tech markets and has a plan to grow the city into a major Midwestern tech hub. The economic development group will make efforts to strengthen the region’s tech sector by adding 20,000 jobs over the next decade. This would be great for the market as tech hubs are known to spur economic growth and prosperity within their communities. Grand Rapids continues to be a leader in the Ed’s & Med’s charge throughout the Midwest, which we believe shows a strong runway for continued growth.