Via GlobeSt, broker CBRE’s research arm has put together a chart of how quickly Washington-area commercial real estate gets absorbed under Republican and Democratic rule. The results are pretty clear: The market does awesomely when the GOP’s in charge.
Pinning down the reason for that is more difficult, though. The report’s authors suggest, logically enough, that commercial real estate may do better when government services are contracted out, which tends to happen under Republicans (they’re “cutting the size of government”). Given that the federal government accounts for 40 percent of the region’s workforce, it should at least have a biig effect. But procurement spending has increased fairly steadily throughout the years, with no noticeable variation when Congress flips:
Also, it’s not as if government workers only work in federal buildings. At the moment, out of the 100 million square feet of office space in the General Services Administration’s portfolio, 58 percent is leased. So fluctuations in federal employment would also affect the commercial real estate market, and there, we’ve got some different trends:
I’d like to say that one-party rule gives rise to more lobbyists, but I’m not sure they’d move the dial on real estate that much. So there are likely other factors at play here.