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14 Must Reads for the CRE Industry Today (Oct. 15, 2020)

Rents are rising in suburban apartments across the U.S., reports the Wall Street Journal. Since government stimulus aid expired, many renters are struggling to continue to pay rent, according to the Associated Press. These are among today’s must reads from around the commercial real estate industry.

  1. Renters Flock to Suburbia, Upending Decadelong Urbanization Trend “Apartment rents are rising in suburban markets across the U.S. as city dwellers look for bigger spaces in smaller towns.” (Wall Street Journal)
  2. Landlords Are Getting Squeezed Between Tenants and Lenders “The stakes are particularly high for small landlords, whether they own commercial properties, such as storefronts, or residential properties such as apartments. Many are borrowing money from relatives or dipping into their personal savings to meet their mortgage payments.” (The Associated Press)
  3. MTA Proposes New Percentage-Based Rent Agreement for Grand Central Restaurants “The proposal needs the approval of the MTA board, which is set to meet later this month. Under this new proposal, the agency will take a percentage of rent from the restaurants and other small businesses in GCT that will be based on gross revenue, according to Janno Lieber, the MTA’s chief development officer and the man overseeing the plan.” (Eater New York)
  4. On the Hunt for Office Space, Companies Stay Low to the Ground “Groundscrapers have been considered less exalted than their soaring brethren, but their ability to house an entire company on a single floor has made them more desirable in the pandemic.” (The New York Times)
  5. Pret A Manger Will Try Anything to Survive “The pandemic made the lunch chain’s biggest strength — hundreds of stores in central London — its biggest weakness overnight.” (The New York Times)
  6. Macy's Turned 2 Locations into 'Dark Stores' that Fulfill Online Orders and Don't Have In-Store Shopping “The company has turned two of its department stores into Omni Service Centers focused on pickup services and fulfillment, not in-store shopping.” (Business Insider)
  7. COVID-19 Driving Wider Price Disconnect Between Commercial Property Buyers and Sellers in U.S. “A new U.S. commercial property survey by CBRE finds a wide disconnect on pricing expectations between buyers and sellers as a consequence of the COVID-19 pandemic that is weighing on commercial investment activity.” (World Property Journal)
  8. Starbucks Pledges to Have 30% of Corporate Workforce Identify as a Minority by 2025 “Starbucks said Wednesday it is starting a mentorship program, piloting outreach workers in its cafes and tying team diversity to executive compensation as part of its broader plan to step up its commitment to inclusion and become a more diverse company.” (CNBC)
  9. The We Company Is Changing Its Name Back to WeWork “The We Company announced Wednesday that it is changing its name to WeWork — again.” (Business Insider)
  10. Multifamily Stabilization Weighed Down By Rising Concessions “The multifamily market is beginning to show signs of improvement and stabilization—but still has challenges ahead in certain areas, such as a rising level of concessions.” (
  11. Walmart to Spread Out Deals to Avoid Black Friday Crowds “Walmart says it will spread out its traditional one-day Black Friday deals over three weekends in November in an effort to reduce crowds in its stores during a pandemic.” (The Associated Press)
  12. To Better Understand Prop 15, We Took A Trip To One Of California's Top Malls “Are commercial property owners in California paying their fair share in taxes? That's the basic question facing voters this November with Proposition 15.” (LAist)
  13. Federal Realty Defaults On $61M Loan Backed By Miami's Shops At Sunset Place “The REIT is working through the debt on the property, which matured in June, with its lender.” (Bisnow)
  14. Deutsche’s Exit From Wall Street Marks the End of an Era “It's the last major bank with its headquarters on Wall Street and it won't be returning.” (Commercial Observer)
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