Tag Archive for: industrial market

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Industrial real estate rents increased and vacancies continued declining through November of 2022 despite a record amount of new supply hitting the market, according to the latest U.S. industrial market report from CommercialEdge.

Released just before Christmas, the report found that rents on in-place leases rose 6.5% nationally year over year, while the national vacancy rate dipped to 3.8%.

The new development pipeline also continued to increase, overcoming inflation-driven backlogs and bottlenecks along the supply chain. There were 742.3 million square feet of industrial space under construction as November ended, CommercialEdge reported.

Port markets led in November in both new leases and in-place rent growth. In line with trends seen in the past two years, Southern California in-place rents have climbed at the fastest rate, driven by double-digit growth in the Inland Empire and Los Angeles. On the East Coast, Boston and New Jersey saw the strongest rent hikes.

 

Source: ConnectCRE

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As we round the halfway mark of 2022, dynamics are shifting in the commercial real estate investment environment.

Preliminary data from SitusAMC Insight’s second quarter 2022 institutional investor survey shows changing preferences among property segments.

Compared to the previous quarter, the percentage of investors selecting industrial as the best property type over the next year plummeted from 47 percent to 11 percent, citing major concerns that the sector is overpriced. Apartment was the most favored segment among investors; 56 percent of investors ranked apartment as the best sector, up from 21 percent last quarter.

Skyrocketing mortgage rates are putting a crimp in single-family affordability, resulting in strong demand conditions for apartments. Several investors also remarked that apartments were the best inflation hedge among the property types. Retail appears to be making a comeback, with investor preference for the sector climbing to 33 percent from just 11 percent last quarter, citing opportunity for yield plays. Investor sentiment on office, on the other hand, is extremely bearish; no investors selected it as the top property type, with the sector falling from 16 percent in first quarter.

SitusAMC is seeing these sentiment shifts play out in their client work. After so many quarters of seemingly unstoppable growth, the industrial sector is starting to show initial signs of a slowdown, even though fundamentals are still strong. While rents are still growing in most markets and investors are still anticipating widespread above-inflationary rent growth and are underwriting to these assumptions, it is unrealistic to expect another quarter of 8 percent to 12 percent rent growth. Meanwhile, the buyer pool for industrial has been shrinking since the beginning of the year, and some of the larger portfolios are not being financed or traded.

Some Value Deterioration

The value driver for apartments in the second quarter was market rents and rent growth. There is still very strong sales activity, but, as with industrial, there are fewer investors at the table when the bidding reaches the best and final round. Regardless, the fundamentals remain very strong. For the first time in several quarters, low-rise apartments are performing better than garden apartments. Suburban is still outperforming urban, but some urban locations are showing signs of growth.

Investment rates are not decreasing across the board— they are very specific to the assets and the submarket. Gateway markets are lagging but improving. New York is the leader of the gateway markets, and Chicago is seeing improvements in rent growth, which is translating into some value improvement. San Francisco is starting to produce positive indicators as well, and Boston and Seattle are experiencing growth momentum. SitusAMC Insight’s proprietary multifamily affordability indexes indicate improved affordability in gateway markets vs. affordability deterioration in non-gateway metros.

SitusAMC’s retail valuations were slightly up in second quarter. Leasing activity has picked up, with many reflecting short-term mid-pandemic leases that are expiring and being renewed. A couple of large deals involving grocery-anchored centers have signaled very strong cap rates, in the low-to-mid 4 percent range, in strong markets like San Diego and Miami. However, these rates were negotiated at the beginning of the year when the debt markets had not yet changed.

Some SitusAMC clients are repricing their assets down slightly because of the debt market environment. In addition, recent strong retail sales are unlikely to continue as inflation erodes consumers’ disposable income and redirects spending to everyday necessities like gasoline and food. Retail outlets that provide essential goods, such as neighborhood and community centers with grocery anchors, will likely maintain steady income streams. Malls could be hurt by the decline in nonessential spending.

Office values remained relatively flat in the second quarter; most of the increases in values seen were owing to contractual rent increases. Overall office values are skewed, however, by strong growth in life science. SitusAMC is seeing many tenants downsizing. Daily office occupancy is mired around 40 percent, and it might not exceed 60 percent in the long term. There has been a flight to quality as employers try to attract top talent during a tight labor market.

On the bright side, near-term market rent growth has steadily increased over the past year, however, and is getting closer to the standard 3 percent. The strongest growth markets continue to be in the Sun Belt and the suburbs, which are doing better than CBD and gateway markets, but rents are increasing in those areas, as well. There have also been a lot of early renewals—near 10 percent, the highest level since 2015—though this is partly due to leases that expired during the pandemic and were renewed on a short-term basis.

 

Source: Commercial Property Executive

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Commercial property purchases have shown few signs of slowing down after a banner year, according to a recent report from JLL Capital Market’s Miami office.

South Florida commercial real estate transactions rose to $25 billion in 2021. That’s a 183% increase from the $8.8 billion in transactions across Miami-Dade, Broward, and Palm Beach counties recorded the year before.

The momentum has spilled over into this year. In the first three months of 2022, JLL recorded $6 billion in commercial real estate transactions completed across the tri-county area industry-wide, up 51% from the first quarter of 2021. (Data from the first quarter of 2022 is preliminary and subject to change, a JLL spokeswoman told the Business Journal.) This sharp rise in deal activity could be found across the industrial, multifamily, office and retail sectors.

Danny Finkle, senior managing director of JLL’s Miami office, credits the new wave of transactions to Florida’s “business-friendly environment and excellent quality of life.”

“Institutional investors have recognized this cultural shift and are tailoring their investment criteria to target markets like South Florida,” Finkle stated in a recent JLL release.

A significant portion of the property sales centered on multifamily housing. In 2021, there were $14.69 billion in real estate transactions involving residential rentals, an increase of 277% from the previous year. In the first quarter 2022, there have been $2.75 billion in trades involving South Florida apartment buildings, a 76% hike compared to the year-ago quarter.

In the office sector, there were $5.38 billion in trades in 2021, a 235% jump from the year prior. In the first quarter of this year, there have been $1.05 billion in office sales, a year-over-year increase of 10%.

Meanwhile, retail property transactions rose 136% in 2021 year over year to $3.88 billion in South Florida. Then another $1.28 billion of retail transactions took place in the first quarter of this year, a 186% hike compared to the year-ago quarter.

As for industrial, sales volume increased 63% from the previous year to $2.3 billion in 2021. In the first quarter of 2022, a total of $908.29 million in industrial transactions took place, a 76% leap from the year-ago quarter.

Companies and well-off individuals have been migrating to South Florida in greater numbers due to the region’s popularity, weather, and lack of income taxes, brokers and developers have told the Business Journal. It’sa trend that’s expected continue through the rest of 2022, making South Florida a prime spot for investment. Multifamily properties likely saw the biggest increases because rents are surging at a faster rate in the Miami area than almost any other metro in the U.S.

The migration has tipped e-commerce into overdrive, creating a shortage of warehouse and distribution space as companies seek to fulfill the orders of a humming economy amidst a continuing supply-chain crunch.

JLL stated that its Miami office handled 121% more investment sales, debt, and equity transactions in 2021 than the year before. To accommodate that growth, JLL promoted Cody Brais, Kenny Cutler and Max La Cava to director status.

Headquartered in Chicago, JLL has 3,000 capital market specialistsacross 50 nations. The data in JLL’s report was supplied from Real Capital Analytics, a New York-based real estate analysis company that has recorded $40 trillion in commercial real estate transactions since its founding in 2000.

 

Source: SFBJ

 

the road to 2020

So 2019 is drawing to a close, having given the world of commercial real estate things we expected — like a booming industrial market — and things we didn’t (WeWork and opportunity zones were among the greatest flops of the decade).

Bisnow asked some South Florida real estate pros what 2020 may bring. Here are their thoughts:

Jeff Gordon, Vice President, JLL

“We have a number of interesting new office developments delivering or in the pipeline across Miami’s office market over the next few years. This will create variety and optionality not previously seen in Miami as it pertains to emerging submarkets, deepening options in changing submarkets and the way in which the office use is amenitized with other product types across the market as a whole. This variability will provide opportunities for tenants that approach their future leasing with a proactive strategy. In line with this, it will also be interesting to see the impact that the continued expansion of the Virgin Trains stations will have on the connectivity of Aventura and Boca with our Central Business Districts and the continued goal of connecting Florida’s growing talent and workforce.”

Tere Blanca, Founder and CEO, Blanca Commercial Real Estate

“Miami’s vibrant and diverse economy, its business-friendly environment (and tax advantages) and its convenient lifestyle and connectivity to the world via Miami International Airport will continue to spur the relocation to Miami of talented professionals and companies across various industries both domestically and internationally. Key factors driving this movement include this increase in people relocating here due to tax incentives including the lack of a state income tax. The strong population growth in the past five years, with continued projected growth, will continue to motivate companies to establish a presence in Miami. Also, the uncertain political climate in key Latin American countries may attract investment into Miami from these markets that include Mexico and other nations. With limited new office supply delivering in 2020 and robust demand from companies touring the market, we expect the market to remain stable and steady with positive absorption and modest increase in rents. Also, new office deliveries in 2020 will be well-received given Miami’s persistent flight-to-quality trend and this in turn will drive owners of older, existing buildings to undertake strategic renovations to remain competitive. With flight-to-quality prominent among tenants today, we expect new supply to attract tenants across various submarkets, while also attracting new-to-market entrants.”

Cory Yeffet, Director of Acquisitions, Integra Investments

“We expect multifamily development and sales to remain active in 2020. Although rent growth has slowed due in part to significant new supply, demand remaining strong and multifamily cap rates remaining at record lows will continue to support a healthy development and sales environment. This is why Integra continues to be active in the sector, with four multifamily projects under development in South Florida, including the 315-unit Bella Vista project in Lauderdale Lakes, which we intend to deliver and stabilize in 2020. The biggest commercial real estate concern we see for 2020 is the uncertain impacts of the election year, and how global economic and sociopolitical dynamics may slow down private sector expansions.”

Doug Jones, Co-founder and Managing Partner, JAG Insurance Group

“For about the last 10 years, rates have consistently gone down. But with the influx of natural disasters, reinsurance went up in 2019 and that will continue in 2020. That trickles down to the consumer. Also, while risk of sea level rise continues to be a concern, thanks to the recent expansion of the private flood market, consumers will actually have more options in 2020 than ever before to make sure their assets have the proper coverage.”

David Druey, Florida Regional President, Centennial Bank

“I predict minimal, if any, slowing down in deal flow of construction financing in any of the major sectors. Smart developers are seizing the opportunities of low interest rates through use of bank financing for construction financing and securing forward commitments with institution investors for stabilized projects. The ongoing major risk is if the developer can actually complete the project on time and budget. Most of the more substantial projects, outside of apartments, typically have the stabilization piece solved prior to construction commencement.”

Ronald Fieldstone, Partner, Saul Ewing Arnstein & Lehr

“The new EB-5 regulations went into effect at the end of 2019 and we are still seeing increasing interest from investors, especially from Latin America, in the EB-5 program despite the higher threshold. Over the past 10 years, developers have grown dependent on raising EB-5 capital to finance their projects due to the low cost of EB-5 borrowing. We expect it to continue to remain a viable source of financing for development projects in downtown Miami west of Biscayne Boulevard, Little River, areas around Miami International Airport and certain sections of Coconut Grove.”

Stephen Rutchik, Executive Managing Director, Colliers International

“Although one of the original iterations of coworking, WeWork has collapsed on a corporate level, I expect that the concept and most of the existing locations will continue to perform well over the next year. On a larger scale, office landlords in South Florida are increasingly incorporating the coworking concept into existing office buildings. This is attracting new tenants who previously would have either been priced out of traditional office space or who require flexibility that a traditional lease cannot provide. The coworking concept is much larger than WeWork. It has quickly become a part of the American office culture and I expect this trend to grow in the coming years.”

Adam Lustig, Partner and Incoming Real Estate Practice Group Leader, Bilzin Sumberg

“With continued low interest rates, increased employment and significant population growth, I expect the South Florida real estate market to remain strong in 2020. In particular, I see health-related real estate and senior housing as areas of opportunity with the aging of the population and the need for urgent care centers, hospitals, medical office space and senior housing facilities. As shopping center owners try to adapt to dramatic changes in the retail market, medical, health and wellness uses will continue to expand. The major threats to continued growth in South Florida remain traffic, lack of public transportation and affordable housing. One other threat that is not being talked about enough, but that we are very focused on, is the phase-out of Libor at the end of 2021 which affects trillions of dollars of commercial real estate loans.”

Chris Chakford, Managing Director of Origination, Kawa

“Kawa sees ground leases as an ongoing trend in 2020 as banks pull back on commercial fee simple financing in non-core markets, most notably in hospitality and office sectors. With sponsors needing creative solutions to fill out capital stacks and lessen their equity requirement, Kawa has created a ground lease program that offers a complete financing solution to meet these needs. This type of financing vehicle offers a highly adaptable bifurcation structure that accommodates owners’ needs while typically enhancing returns, providing tax benefits, being nonrecourse, and mitigating interest rate risk by offering perpetual financing. In the last three years, Kawa has executed 12 ground lease transactions with a total value in excess of $652M and anticipates ground leases to be a prominent alternative for providing creative financing solutions with flexible capital that can be deployed quickly as we look ahead into 2020.”

Peter Mekras, President of Aztec Group

“2020 is likely to be a year filled with volatility. Interest rates and the political environment both locally and nationally will be the main drivers of market volatility in 2020. Irrespective of the trend of volatility in 2020, we expect capital markets to remain liquid. Equity capital will continue to flow into Florida real estate in 2020. Florida will maintain its label as one of the few states positioned for strong long-term fundamentals and a uniquely favorable business environment for real estate investors. Florida is projected to experience better than national trend employment growth and will continue to benefit from strong population growth. Rental apartments, senior housing and well-located office and shopping centers will be the beneficiaries.”

Lissette Calderon, President and CEO of Neology Life Development Group

“Allapattah is seeing significant residential and commercial real estate investment underway that will enhance the neighborhood’s appeal and quality-of-life offerings. With Miami’s growing population seeking lifestyle living alternatives within the urban core at attainable price points, our mission is to provide a solution to this need by developing attainable luxury rental units that are modern, functional and offer upscale amenities.”

Michael C. Brown, Executive Vice President and General Manager, Skanska USA Florida

“Come the new year, I anticipate the two sectors poised to fuel Miami’s economic growth will be healthcare and higher education, which continue to be the largest sectors for us across the state and in South Florida. I believe we will also continue to see a more pronounced shift into environmentally friendly building, specifically with companies looking to minimize their carbon footprints.”

Martin Melo, Principal, The Melo Group

“2020 will prove to be a year full of challenges, mostly driven by the political landscape throughout Latin America, the upcoming elections and the increasingly low interest rates and low income tax in Florida. We can expect to see an influx of new residents who come to South Florida searching for a more attractive and stable socioeconomic climate as opposed to the current situation in their own countries. The demand for multifamily and market-rate apartments will continue to rise and interest rates will remain low, which will ultimately spark a bigger interest from developers and investors in the area.”

Shawn Gracey, Executive Vice President of Hospitality, Key International

“As the hospitality industry becomes increasingly diverse, there will be even more emphasis on presenting a unique value proposition to today’s travelers. We’ve found that our customer profile is seeking experience-based and design-driven accommodations in key coastline cities, which led us to develop the AC Hotel by Marriott in Fort Lauderdale Beach, which will be one of the newest, upscale select-service properties in the area when it’s delivered next year.”

Rishi Kapoor, CEO, Location Ventures

“Pointing to various indicators, the fortress submarkets of Miami’s luxury condo inventory are the prominent choice in 2020, compared to areas of oversupply. Foreign buyers will remain a challenge, despite promising pockets from target countries in Latin America; the true stability is in the end user, who traditionally purchases a primary residence rather than investment product, and is more likely to focus on lifestyle moves in the market. This is why more protected submarkets, such as Coral Gables, will be a strategic play, as we’re seeing a wave of retirees or empty nesters, coupled with growing families, seeking to place roots in a neighborhood with a thriving business environment, limited top-tier condo product and a historic record for stability.”

Miguel Díaz de la Portilla, Attorney, Saul Ewing Arnstein & Lehr

“2020 will be an exciting year of American Dream Miami. We have our land use and zoning approvals in place and will be finalizing the design of the project, applying for administrative site plan approval, and moving forward with continuing to work on infrastructure. This will all be happening at a time when people from all over the world are beginning to experience the magnificence of American Dream Meadowlands in New Jersey. Triple Five just opened the entertainment center that serves as a sneak peek to how American Dream Miami will look and the tremendous benefit that it will have on our local economy.”

 

Source: Bisnow

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With the Thanksgiving holiday weekend behind, it is not too soon to look at what will be the top investment strategies for next year.

Seven top CRE investment strategies for 2020 include:

1. Sell Overpriced Industrial Assets

The industrial market has been booming for the last few years and is the favored asset class among institutional investors. The market is “hot” because of the strong economy, increased demand for warehouse and distribution space due to rising Internet sales and last-mile same- day delivery of online goods. Cap rates for industrial properties have compressed 1.5% to 2.0% during the last 18 months and we would be net sellers of industrial assets in this market.

2. Acquire Beaten Up Retail Assets

Many shopping center and mall real estate assets are selling at 7.0% to 10.0%+ cap rates and some of these assets should be bought. Retail assets have been out of favor for the last few years and although there are tenant risks, with bankruptcies and store closures, they can still provide a higher risk-adjusted return than other CRE assets. A number of the public retail malls are also selling at deep 50%+ discounts to net asset value and are also ripe for a buyout or being taken private. These distressed retail deals are opportunistic investments and need significant renovation and releasing.

3. Invest In Data Analytics Companies

One of the key growth areas of CRE is in data analytics. Data analytics encompasses all aspects of big data for CRE including; demographics, ownership data, property data, historical value information, sales/lease data and financial analysis. The data analytics space is very fragmented with a few large companies like CoStar, RealPage, REIS (a unit of Moody’s) and many local and start-up companies. These larger firms have been acquiring smaller competitors to expand their service offerings and customer base. Recently, CoStar acquired Smith Travel Research, the leading hotel/lodging consulting firm, for $450 million and RealPage acquired Buildium, a property management software firm, for $580 million. As the industry grows, there will be more consolidation and an opportunity to acquire these smaller private firms and even establish a platform to consolidate these entities.

4. Sell Overpriced Core Assets and Reinvest In Opportunistic Assets

The risk and return for various CRE investment strategies range from the lowest risk, core investments, which are typically fully leased, institutional quality, Class A properties with little or no leverage, to value-added strategies which are higher risk strategies that involve some property redevelopment, tenant adjustment or leasing or with operational problems to opportunistic strategies, which are the highest risk category that involve a high degree of redevelopment, leasing, tenant relocation or change or may be in financial distress. Many core properties are still trading at 3.0% to 4.5% cap rates and should be sold. The proceeds should be reinvested in higher return opportunistic strategies, as discussed in #2 above, buying beaten up retail assets.

5. Provide Participating Mezzanine Loans

Even though there is a lot of capital sloshing around chasing deals, there is a dearth of debt/equity capital for the portion of the capital stack above the first mortgage at about 65%-70% and below the minimum owners’ equity investment of 10.0%. This slice of 20% of the capital stack is ideal for a participating mezzanine loan. The participating mezzanine loan may have terms as follow; interest rate at LIBOR plus 4.0%+, loan fees of 1.0%-3.0%+ and 20.0% to 30.0%+ ownership of the deal. The mezzanine lender will typically not be secured by a second lien on the property but by an ownership guarantee and assignment of the owner’s interest in the property. The lender is entitled to the equity kicker because it is taking some of the equity risk of the project. Internal rates of return of 12.0%-15.0%+ can be delivered with this strategy, which is very attractive for a fixed income investment.

6. Perform A Systematic Review and Analysis Of The 15 CRE Risks

As we have discussed before, there are 15 risks inherent in CRE investment as follows:

  • Cash Flow Risk-volatility in the property’s net operating income or cash flow.
  • Property Value Risk-a reduction in a property’s value.
  • Tenant Risk-loss or bankruptcy of a major tenant.
  • Market Risk-negative changes in the local real estate market or metropolitan statistical area.
  • Economic Risk-negative changes in the macroeconomy.
  • Interest Rate Risk-an increase in interest rates.
  • Inflation Risk-an increase in inflation.
  • Leasing Risk-inability to lease vacant space or a drop in lease rates.
  • Management Risk-poor management policy and operations.
  • Ownership Risk-loss of critical personnel of owner or sponsor.
  • Legal, Title, Tax and Political Risk-averse legal, tax and political issues and claims on title.
  • Construction Risk-development delays, cessation of construction, financial distress of general contractor or sub-contractors and payment defaults.
  • Entitlement Risk-inability or delay in obtaining project entitlements.
  • Liquidity Risk-inability to sell the property or convert equity value into cash.
  • Refinancing Risk-inability to refinance the property.

All investors that own CRE should perform a detailed and systematic review of the above risks and their potential effect on an asset or portfolio.

7. Acquire Small Capitalization Public And Private REITs

There are more than 30 public REITs with market capitalizations less than $1 billion that are trading at or less than their net asset value. These REITs are ripe to be acquired or taken private by other REITs, real estate private equity firms or other institutional investors. It also may be possible to get control of the board of directors of some of these REITs via a proxy contest.

Any acquisition or merger opportunity will have to comply with the REIT tax rules including, the 5 or 50 rule which states that 5 or fewer individuals cannot own more than 50% of the value of a REIT during the last half of the year. Also, more than two-thirds of REITs are incorporated in the state of Maryland which has broader liability protection, more flexible voting provisions for stockholders, easier Bylaw amendment provisions, better protection against hostile takeovers and easier stock issuance procedures. Notwithstanding a Maryland incorporation, there are still opportunities via a friendly acquisition or proxy contest.

 

Source: GlobeSt.

Michael Rauch and Tom Robertson, principals of  CRE Rauch, Lupo, Robertson & Co. have facilitated the sale of 1280-1288 SW 29th Avenue in Pompano Beach, Florida.

The ±42,897 square foot USDA facility was sold to Murvest Fine Foods, a purveyor of meat and specially food products in Ft. Lauderdale, for $3,075,000.

Murvest acquired the facility to continue its next phase of expansion. The facility contains over ±32,000 SF of food processing space including freezers, coolers, cooking and dry storage areas plus approximately ±10,000 SF of air conditioned warehouse. The building was built in1984 and was Boston Market’s main south Florida commissary during the 1990’s. The acquisition by Murvest took over a year to complete.

The acquisition by Murvest took over a year to complete. “We are very pleased to have finally acquired the property, originally one of the most well designed USDA plants in south Florida,” said John Murphy, Murvest’s owner. “While there is much work yet to be done we are confident the facility will serve our needs well”, he said.

“The industrial market is certainly improving even for specialized buildings such as this one and both buyer and seller representation assignments are increasing for CRE”, stated Rauch. Robertson added, “We worked long and hard to complete this transaction and a lot of credit should be given to the buyer and seller for completing a difficult sale.”