First quarter 2021 closed with a direct vacancy rate of 5.18%, an overall vacancy rate of 5.60%, and an average asking direct rental rate reported at $7.02 psf. In March, the Michigan unemployment rate was recorded at 5.1%, a decrease for the third straight month, yet still at an elevated rate compared to one year ago when recorded at 3.5%. While the U.S. unemployment rate was recorded at 6.0% in March, it continues to steadily decrease as the number of jobless claims dip as many job sectors continue to reopen. Optimism continues to grow as U.S. employers are expected to continue to add jobs as many states move towards easing business restrictions, creating confidence in paving a path toward strengthening the economic recovery in the coming months. Many other factors signal a strengthening economy including consumer spending, investing, and housing demand. Consumer spending increased at the fastest pace in nine months and was recorded at 4.2% in March, while U.S. home prices increased by 11.9% in February, the fastest pace in close to seven years as demand for housing continues to escalate. The Federal Reserve also announced they expect to keep the interest rate near zero with no rate hikes though 2023.