Retail property is under stress, with empty stores, little growth and customers who prefer to shop online. Find out current trends, forecasts, and what is happening in retail leasing and investing.


NAR Library & Archives has already done the research for you. References (formerly Field Guides) offer links to articles, eBooks, websites, statistics, and more to provide a comprehensive overview of perspectives. EBSCO articles (E) are available only to NAR members and require a password.

Retail Pr​operty Trends

Retail: Positioned for Recovery (Commercial Connections, Sep. 20, 2021)

Foot Traffic at Malls Climbs Above Pre-Pandemic Levels (REALTOR® Magazine, Sep. 20, 2021)

Instant Reaction: Retail Trade Sales September 16, 2021 (Economists’ Outlook, Sep. 16, 2021)

Commercial Weekly: Increase in Demand for Retail Space (Economists’ Outlook, Sep. 14, 2021)

More US Retail Stores Opening Than Closing This Year: Survey (Commercial Observer, Sep. 3, 2021)

The Radical Retail Recovery: 8 Takeaways from the Pandemic and How Retail Has Forever Changed (REjournals, Aug. 27, 2021)

The Mall of The Future: Less Retail, More Content (Building Design & Construction, Aug. 25, 2021)

Understanding Retail’s Resilience and Lopsided Recovery (Propmodo, Aug. 16, 2021)

The State of the American Mall (The New York Times, Aug. 10, 2021)

Trend Talk Video: Retail Real Estate Trends (Retail Leader, Aug. 6, 2021)

Malls May Not Even Need Anchors. Here's Why. (Retail Dive, Jul 12, 2021)

The Property Line - Future of Franchising in the Retail/Restaurant Space (Seyfarth, Jun. 21, 2021)

Leasing Tips & Trends

Occupancy Cost Reduction in a Post-COVID Economy (National Retail Tenants Association, Sep. 16, 2021)

Commercial Lease Disputes During the Ongoing Pandemic: The Second Wave (Retail & Consumer Products Law Observer, Sep. 15, 2021)

Survey: Retail Leasing Will Expand, Rents Will Stay Flat (Chain Store Age, Aug. 16, 2021)

The Property Line - The Continuing Evolution of COVID-19 Retail Rent Decisions and the Impact on Leasing (Seyfarth, Jul. 26, 2021)

It’s Time for Retailers to Prepare for the New Lease Accounting Standard (Shopping Center Business, Jul. 1, 2021)

How the Pandemic Has Changed Real Estate Contracts (Commercial Observer, Jun. 28, 2021)

Few Long-Term Lease Changes Emerge From COVID-19 Pandemic (Franchise Times, Jun. 18, 2021)

Coronavirus Guidance: Commercial Real Estate (National Association of REALTORS®, Apr. 22, 2021)

Commercial Investment ​Tips & Trends

Has the Commercial Real Estate Market Fully Recovered from Pandemic? (Mortgage Professional America, Aug. 13, 2021)

Retail REITs Are Up 32% This Year -- Could They Climb Even Further? (The Motley Fool, Jun. 20, 2021)

When Will Private Equity Money Impact Commercial Real Estate? (Commercial Observor, Jun. 8, 2021)

The Re-Emerging Multi-Tenant Market (Shopping Center Business, Jun. 2, 2021)

Expectations of Strong Post-COVID Recovery Bolster Competition for Commercial Real Estate Assets (Think Realty, Jun. 1, 2021)

Businesses Are Back, But Hiring Isn't. How Low Employment Is Impacting Real Estate (Millionacres, May 14, 2021)

Retail Is Coming Back: An Opportunity for Private Lenders (Shopping Center Business, Apr. 12, 2021)

Malls Tout Proposed Changes to REIT Rules as Good for Retailers (Retail Dive, Apr. 1, 2021)


Retail Industry Leaders Association—The Retail Industry Leaders Association is the US trade association for leading retailers. We convene decision-makers, advocate for the industry, and promote operational excellence and innovation.

CCIM Institute—A Certified Commercial Investment Member (CCIM) is a recognized expert in the disciplines of commercial and investment real estate.

International Council of Shopping Centers—Global trade association representing the shopping center industry. The groups' membership is over 65,000 in about 80 countries.

IREM—The Institute of Real Estate Management (IREM), an affiliate of the National Association of REALTORS®, is an association of property and asset managers who have met the strict criteria in the areas of education, experience, and ethics.

National Grocers Association — For nearly 40 years, the National Grocers Association (NGA) has represented independent supermarket operators in every congressional district across the country, and the wholesalers that service them.

National Retail Federation—The National Retail Federation is the world's largest retail trade association, with membership compromising all retail formats and channels of distribution.

eBooks &​ Other Resources


The following eBooks and digital audiobooks are available to NAR members:

Big Box Reuse (eBook)

Commercial Real Estate Investment (eBook)

The Complete Guide to Financing Real Estate Developments (eBook)

The Dynamics of Property Location (eBook)

Gen BuY: How Tweens, Teens and Twenty-Somethings are Revolutionizing Retail! (eBook)

Real Estate Development and Investment (eBook)

Sustainable Property Development (eBook)

Books, Videos, Research Reports & More

The resources below are available for loan through the NAR Library & Archives. Up to three books, tapes, CDs and/or DVDs can be borrowed for 30 days from the Library for a nominal fee of $10. Call Member Support at 800-874-6500 for assistance.

Retail Development (Urban Land Institute, 2008) HF 5430 Ur1

Green Retail: Selected Readings (Urban Land Institute, 2007) NA 6230 Ur1g

Retail 1-2-3: A Workbook for Local Officials (Metropolitan Planning Council, 2007) HF 5429 El7

The Lease Manual: A Practical Guide to Negotiating Office, Retail, and Industrial Leases (American Bar Association, 2006) KF593.C6 D55

Developing Retail Entertainment Destinations (Urban Land Institute, 2001) NAC 1800 Ur1dr

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