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10 Must Reads for the CRE Industry Today (Nov. 30, 2022)

More concern is being voiced by the commercial real estate industry over new challenges facing the office sector. Brookfield might be on the verge of becoming an even more influential dealmaker, according to Propmodo. These are among today’s must reads from around the commercial real estate industry.

  1. Office Giants Call for D.C. Government to Take Risk of Distress More Seriously “D.C.’s most prominent office owners say the city isn’t properly accounting for plummeting property values in the office market and could face major budget issues if it doesn’t take action. Those property owners — including the heads of JBG Smith, Carr Properties, Akridge, Hoffman & Associates and more — signed a letter to D.C.’s top officials raising concerns over the ‘very troubling’ state of the city’s office market and the risks it could pose to its fiscal health.” (Bisnow)
  2. Office Sector Braces Ahead for New Challenges “Economic headwinds, coupled with consecutive interest rate increases, the further adoption of work-from-home and remote office arrangements, and growing office footprint reductions contributed to an increase in vacancy rates throughout the year while maintaining uneven—yet historic in some places—rent growth, according to the latest CommercialEdge office report.” (Commercial Property Executive)
  3. Activist House Flippers Take On Wall Street to Keep Homes from Investors “Acts Housing, a Milwaukee nonprofit, has helped local low-income families buy their first home for more than two decades. More recently, these families have been losing out to investors whose all-cash bids are more attractive to sellers. ‘If a family is willing to pay the same amount for a property as an investor, how do we make sure that family actually gets that opportunity?’ asked the group’s president and chief executive, Michael Gosman. The answer, he decided, was to act more like an investor. Mr. Gosman said he is raising money for a fund that would purchase homes in cash, then flip them back to families for close to cost.” (The Wall Street Journal)
  4. ‘The Industrial Market Is Not Recession-Proof’: What One Industry Expert Predicts for CRE’s Favorite Sector in 2023 “James Breeze, Senior Director, Global Head of Industrial & Logistics Research at CBRE, sat down with GlobeSt in advance of his upcoming keynote address at our industrial conference on December 8 in Scottsdale, Ariz., to talk about the trends he’s seeing within the in sector.  He noted that leasing activity for industrial looks to finish the year  at approximately 850 million sq. ft., the sector’s second-highest year on record. And despite a pullback in transaction volume, rent growth accelerated to a year-over-year growth rate of 18.9%, an all-time record, while vacancy rates hit a record low 2.9% at the end of the third quarter.” (
  5. Why Brookfield’s Spinoff Could Transform It into an Even Bigger Deal-Making Powerhouse “While the name ‘Brookfield’ may not ring a bell to most folks on the outskirts of the real estate and finance worlds like Goldman Sachs or even Blackstone, that could change very soon because of Brookfield’s plans to spin off its asset-management business. Brookfield Asset Management, based in Toronto, has more than $725 billion of assets under management, focusing on a wide variety of areas like real estate, renewable energy, credit, and private equity. Now they plan on splitting up the company to simplify Brookfield’s complex organizational structure in a way that could jump-start growth and transform the giant multinational firm into an even bigger financial powerhouse.” (Propmodo)
  6. In Public Spat, Aimco and Activist Investor Dispute Future of its Board “A publicly traded REIT headquartered in Denver and an activist investor renewed their public tussle about the future of the company's leadership ahead of its stockholder meeting next month. When the Apartment Investment and Management Co., or Aimco — which operates over $3B in assets across eight markets, including in Colorado — hosts its annual stockholder meeting on Dec. 16, investors will vote on nominations to its 10-person board of directors.” (Bisnow)
  7. How Strip Centers Are Staying Relevant “After two terrible years—when stores closed due to lockdown mandates and foot traffic plummeted—the retail industry has had to reinvent itself to gain its customers back. Shopping malls expanded their offerings to include more gyms, entertainment spaces and theme parks, but other types of retail spaces are also undergoing significant changes. Commercial Property Executive reached out to DP Management‘s Director of Retail Leasing Brett Heimes and asked him to share his thoughts on how strip centers can stay relevant in today’s business climate.” (Commercial Property Executive)
  8. CBRE’s Vikram Kohli on Big Real Estate’s Big Proptech Moves “Vikram Kohli, global group president of business intelligence, oversees technology integration at CBRE, where he climbed the ranks in the Southeast Asia market over the last 20 years, assuming his current position a little more than a year ago. In that role, Kohli brings his extensive global real estate business knowledge to the day-to-day shepherding of CBRE’s approximately 3,000-member global technology team, which reports to him, and in such big tech deals as the investment in VTS.” (Commercial Observer)
  9. Florida Developers Hold Off on Big Projects as Insurance Costs Surge “David Lynd, a San Antonio-based developer of large-scale apartment buildings, had been expanding his business in South Florida. But recently, he decided to put one of his new projects on hold. There’s no problem with demand. People in tech, finance and other businesses are pouring into the area, looking for a home to rent. It is the cost of insurance for commercial property in the state, which overall has doubled in the past year, that is causing him to pull back. ‘The insurance spike alone can kill a deal,’ said Mr. Lynd, chief executive of Lynd Group.” (The Wall Street Journal)
  10. Bill Aims to Expose City Council Members’ Rent-Stabilized Units “A new City Council bill would offer a window into the living arrangements of the chamber’s members, revealing which of them benefit from regulated rents. The legislation, proposed by Council member Robert Holden and referred to the Committee on Standards and Ethics last Tuesday, would require all members to disclose whether their primary residence is a rent-stabilized apartment.” (The Real Deal)
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