NE Tenn. commercial real estate transaction down 11.7%

Don Fenley 

Office, industrial, vacant land deals weathering the storm


October’s Commercial Real Estate Market posted a small transaction decline on the heels of its best two months this year. Compared to October last year, transactions were down 11.7%. But while Covid is still savaging some commercial sectors, others are seeing growth.

There were 30 transactions, according to the Northeast Tennessee Association of Realtors (NETAR) monthly Commercial Real Estate (CRE) Report. September’s total was 31. During August, the total was 35.

The 10-month total from NETAR’s Commercial Multiple Listing Service (CMLS) was 176 compared to 197 last year. The Flex Multiple Listing Service (MLS) total so far this year is 103, up from 100 last year.

The local commercial market continues to get a lot of attention, but total transactions are flat, Cassie Petzoldt, chair of the NETAR Commercial Committee, said. Contracts with contingencies based on the Bristol casino outcome should “begin showing up on reports for the last two months of the year, she added.

Last month, the most active CMLS transactions were sales and leases of office properties, followed by industrial sites then retail-commercial. The current year-to-date total for office deals is 63, six more during the first 10 months of 2019.

Interest in vacant land interest has been high all year. There have been 22 deals so far this year compared to 19 during the first 10 months of last year. And the 175 vacant land listings are the CMLS CRE sector leader.

The largest October increase in new listings across the region was in the shopping center – up 4 – and multi-family – up 2 – sectors.

The combined CMLS and MLS commercial listings October total was 928, up 8.4 percent from September.


NETAR is the voice for real estate in Northeast Tennessee. It is the largest trade association in the Northeast Tennessee, Southwest Virginia region, representing over 1,600+ members and 100+ business partners involved in all aspects of the residential and commercial real estate industries. Weekly market reports and information for both consumers and members are available on the NETAR website at