An uptick in leasing activity combined with diminished sublease space resulted in an improvement in New Jersey's office market in the first quarter—at least in terms of the direction it appears to be going in.

While the hole that needs to be filled remains large—an overall vacancy rate that ticked up slightly to 26.9% in Q1 2024—a Q4 2023 total of 579,000 square feet of negative net absorption retreated to minus 67,000 square feet in Q1, according to JLL's latest market report, which covers Northern and Central New Jersey.

If you look at the numbers for the two regions separately, the office picture looks much brighter in Northern NJ: the northern third of the Garden State notched more than 366K SF of positive net absorption, compared to a tally of negative 433,000 square feet in Central NJ.

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