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Five Must Reads for the CRE Industry Today (June 18, 2021)

The Deputy Secretary of the U.S. Treasury sent a memo to Congress asking for greater focus on the creation of new housing, reports Vox. Airbnb and Vrbo are battling out for more vacation cabin rentals, according to The Wall Street Journal. These are among today’s must reads from around the commercial real estate industry.

  1. Biden Administration to Congress: Build More Apartments and Houses! “Traditionally, the federal government’s housing policies have been demand-side interventions. Things like the mortgage interest deduction, which reduces homeowner’s taxes (stimulating demand) or the Fed buying up over a trillion dollars in mortgage bonds to help bring down mortgage rates (also stimulating demand). These types of policies are broadly popular since they help people afford something expensive. But they don’t do anything to reduce the cost of housing.” (Vox)
  2. Airbnb, Vrbo Battle for More Vacation Cabins as Travel Rebounds “Vacation-rental brands are jostling to persuade owners to list homes on their sites as properties are in short supply in certain outdoor destinations. Sites such as Airbnb Inc. and Expedia Group Inc.’s Vrbo have rolled out features designed to make it easier to become a host. Demand for homes near beaches, national parks and other nonurban areas has been high during the pandemic, but it is accelerating as the economy reopens, vaccinations rise and some companies have announced plans to keep flexible work arrangements in place.” (The Wall Street Journal)
  3. Exclusive Q&A: Applying the ‘Pop-Up’ Concept to Distribution Centers “Chain Store Age recently sat down with Nishith Rastogi, CEO of global supply chain platform Locus, to discuss the emerging concept of pop-up DCs. Having been used by major retailers such as Walmart and Amazon, pop-up DCs operate similarly to pop-up shops, enabling retailers to quickly and cost-effectively respond to localized demand surges in their supply chains.” (Chain Store Age)
  4. CRE Capital May Not Be as Available as You Think “Many property types have held up despite apocalyptic forecasts, while the balance sheets for top lenders have swollen, as deposits have grown and stimulus money has filtered through the economy. For debt capital, the cratering of interest rates should also drive capital into investments like CRE. Yet, according to the latest data from RERC, a SitusAMC company, the availability of capital is still below pre-pandemic levels, while discipline has stagnated.” (Commercial Property Executive)
  5. Meet the Man Who Went from Studio 54, to Hiding Money Under His Bed in Post-Soviet Russia, to Running a U.K. Property Lender “A journey a bit more interesting than most.” (Bisnow)
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