Economic Snapshot

Every quarter San Diego Regional EDC analyzes key economic indicators that are important to understanding the regional economy and the region’s standing relative to the 25 most populous metropolitan areas in the U.S.

Data are now updated through Q1 2021, reflecting the impacts of COVID-19 on our regional economy. Scroll through the interactive maps and graphs below to see trends in employment, housing, and investment.

Office space here to stay


14.2% office vacancy rate

Influx of VC


$2B total VC investment

Home prices rise


$763.5K median home price

EDC explains the data:

Key findings from q1 2021:

  1. COMMERCIAL REAL ESTATE: Offices aren’t going anywhere. Regional shutdowns and new remote-work policies due to the COVID-19 pandemic have changed the nature of office space. While increased office vacancy (14.2 percent during Q1) suggests companies were abandoning their current offices, a recent survey of San Diego employers found that 39 percent plan to rent, lease, or purchase additional space in the next 12 months. Companies in the region’s innovation industries have more than recovered job losses from the early months of the pandemic and are looking to return to the office in some capacity over the coming months as health guidelines permit.
  1. VENTURE CAPITAL: Biotech leads venture capital investment. In Q1, San Diego saw $2 billion in venture capital (VC) investment come into the region by way of 59 deals—the highest number in a quarter since 2000. The top three deals were worth nearly $1.2 billion, all to local biotechs Mesa Biotech, Fate Therapeutics, and Blacksmith Medicines, and account for more than half of all VC investment in the region. These continued VC inflows are a testament to San Diego’s position as a global life sciences leader.
  1. HOUSING: Rising home prices further hinder affordability. The median home price in Q1 was $763,500—a historic high that has continuously climbed during the pandemic, despite job losses and economic uncertainty. Increasing home prices make it difficult for new homebuyers to enter the market. We can hope that increased vaccinations will encourage sellers off the sidelines and free up more inventory for buyers.

scroll over the interactive graphicS below to learn more.