Commercial real estate recovering, NAR says

The commercial real estate market is recovering slowly, with occupancy rates rising in office and industrial properties in most major cities across the United States, the National Association of Realtors reports.

At the Economics Issues and Commercial Business Trends forum last week. NAR chief economist Lawrence Yun said rising employment has helped perk up the market.

In the second half of 2010, Realtors reported seeing more movement in the commercial market as prices have fallen, providing attractive investment returns.

However, national banks are still hesitant to lend for commercial projects.

"Lending from regional banks has become an important source of funds," Yun said. "The lending from big banks remained sluggish. Investment funds through private equity and real estate investment trusts will play a bigger role as the commercial mortgage-backed securities market struggles to recover."