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Five Must Reads for the CRE Industry Today (Apr. 16, 2021)

The U.S. housing market is 3.8 million homes short of meeting demand, reports the Wall Street Journal. CoStar is buying listing platform Homes.com, according to The Real Deal. These are among today’s must reads from around the commercial real estate industry.

  1. U.S. Housing Market is Nearly 4 Million Homes Short of Buyer Demand “The U.S. housing market is 3.8 million single-family homes short of what is needed to meet the country’s demand, according to a new analysis by mortgage-finance company Freddie Mac. The estimate represents a 52% rise in the nation’s home shortage compared with 2018, the first time Freddie Mac quantified the shortfall. The figures underscore the severity of the housing deficit, which is a major factor fueling the current red-hot housing market.” (Wall Street Journal)
  2. Los Angeles Apartment Rents Dropped 5.5 Percent Since Pandemic Hit “Southern California’s Inland Empire was home to the second-largest median rent growth of 13.2 percent since the start of the COVID pandemic.” (Commercial Observer)
  3. CoStar to Buy Residential Listing Platform Homes.com “CoStar Group is edging further into the world of residential real estate with its latest acquisition. The data giant announced Wednesday it had reached an agreement to buy residential listing platform Homes.com for $156 million in cash. Homes.com platform claims to have more than 1.8 million listings with feeds from 90 percent of the Multiple Listing Services across the country.” (The Real Deal)
  4. Will Emptied Offices in Major Metros Devalue Retail Space? “Last week, New York City released a report saying that the value of its forest of office towers had fallen by 25% in the past year. Cushman & Wakefield estimated that major metro office vacancy rate nationwide increased by 16% during the pandemic. Can we expect, then, a similar decrease in the value of retail property in center city districts? Not necessarily, according to Kenton McKeehan, senior managing director and head of retail for Hines, which owns $144 billion of real estate assets across all sectors in 25 countries.” (Chain Store Age)
  5. Wells Fargo’s Branch Footprint Moves Under 5,000 “Wells Fargo reported that its branch count in Q1 dropped 3% from the previous quarter. This complements Wells Fargo's broader streamlining efforts and matches an industry trend.” (Business Insider)
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