10 Must Reads for the CRE Industry Today (July 30, 2019) – Wire Real Estate

10 Must Reads for the CRE Industry Today (July 30, 2019)

Jul 31, 2019

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A new breed of real estate investors is going after properties damaged by natural disasters, reports the Wall Street Journal. The New York Times looks at how “developer” became a dirty word. These are among today’s must reads from around the commercial real estate industry.

  1. The New Storm Chasers: Real Estate Disaster Investors “After Hurricane Michael swept over the Florida Panhandle last October, destroying thousands of homes and taking dozens of lives, David Dey started looking for property to buy. The Lakeland, Fla.-based real-estate investor had been part of a group that flipped hundreds of damaged homes in and around New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina deluged the city in 2005. He bought flood-damaged homes in Houston after Hurricane Harvey in 2017. The destruction he saw in Panama City, Fla., was worse.” (Wall Street Journal, subscription required)
  2. How ‘Developer’ Became Such a Dirty Word “The developers are coming. They’ve got the politicians in their pockets and the gaudy architectural plans in their hands. They will gorge on the entire city. And they won’t stop until peak profit has been wrung from every patch of land. In Seattle, Austin, New York, Denver, Minneapolis, Washington and the Bay Area, developers are the antiheroes of an urban drama over the high cost of housing and what must change to bring it down.” (The New York Times)
  3. Real Estate Advisory Firm, Execs Pay Over $60 Million to Settle SEC Charges “Real estate advisory firm AR Capital LLC, its founder, and its chief financial officer have agreed to pay more than $60 million to settle SEC charges that they wrongfully obtained millions of dollars in connection with two separate mergers between real estate investment trusts (REITs) that AR Capital sponsored and externally managed. According to the SEC’s complaint, between late 2012 and early 2014, AR Capital arranged for American Realty Capital Properties Inc. (ARCP), a publicly traded REIT, to merge with two publicly held, non-traded REITs: American Realty Capital Trust III, Inc. and American Realty Capital Trust IV, Inc.” (Chief Investment Officer)
  4. Retail Landlords Look to Esports to Lure Young Gamers “A growing number of real estate owners are turning to esports arcades, lounges and even stadiums, hoping to breathe fresh life into their malls, hotels and other properties. Esports arenas allow thousands of gaming fans to watch video content in-person, with even more watching online. Developers are remodeling convention centers by adding locker rooms, seating, broadcast studios, new fiber for high-speed connectivity and massive LED video walls similar to the ones at Times Square.” (Wall Street Journal, subscription required)
  5. Chicago Investor Buying GrubHub HQ “A prominent Chicago developer is set to pay more than $80 million for a landmark Loop office building, buying it from an investor that expected it to fetch a lot more. A joint venture of Golub and an unidentified family office have a deal to buy the leasehold interest in the Burnham Center at 111 W. Washington St., according to sources familiar with the agreement. If the sale of the 585,000-square-foot building is completed at roughly $140 per square foot, it would be only a modest increase from the property’s value when the owner, a venture of Alliance HSP, bought it in 2013.” (Crain’s Chicago Business)
  6. Legionnaire’s Disease Outbreak May Have Sickened Dozens in Atlanta“The first cases of Legionnaires’ disease tied to the hotel were confirmed about two weeks ago. County and state officials are surveying people who stayed there between June 12 and July 15, and they began collecting samples — water and swabs from hotel fixtures — on July 19. Legionnaires’ disease is a type of pneumonia, or lung infection, that is fatal for about one in 10 people who are infected. People can contract it by inhaling small droplets of water contaminated with the bacterium Legionella.” (The New York Times)
  7. Developer Harwood Adds to its Holdings North of Downtown Dallas “One of the biggest property owners in the Uptown area has added to its holdings in the neighborhood. Developer Harwood International bought the Citymark office building at 3100 McKinnon St. north of downtown Dallas. The 11-story office high-rise is located at the entrance to the Dallas North Tollway and was built in 1985. It has more than 229,000 square feet of space.” (Dallas Morning News)
  8. Food Hall’s Mess Leaves Prime Brooklyn Retail Space in Limbo “A complicated landlord-tenant dispute has put in limbo a prime, 8,000-square-foot vacant retail space in downtown Brooklyn. Muss Development, owner of two retail floors at 345 Adams St., expected to take the space back from the Hill Country Food Park a few months ago, after the restaurateurs couldn’t make the place work. The flop followed several attempts by Muss — a landlord known for amicable relationships with tenants — to help the Hill Country team by, among other measures, letting them give back 3,000 square feet of an original 11,000 square feet under a 20-year lease signed in 2013. The smaller space was later leased to Cava Grill.” (New York Post)
  9. How Tech Is Taking on its Biggest Challenge Yet: Real Estate “It’s 2019, and the pace of innovation across industries is accelerating at breakneck speed. Mobile experiences have unlocked new shortcuts for travelers. Busy 9-to-5 professionals are ordering pre-cooked dishes to their doorstep because meal kits weren’t convenient enough. Walk-out trackers are eliminating the need for long lines at the grocery store. (If you’ve ever tried to grab lunch at the supermarket in a big city, you know what a game-changer this is.)” (Forbes)
  10. Why Seniors Should Avoid the Temptation to Sell Their Investment Property—Even if it Soared in Value “Prices in many real estate markets have regained their pre-financial-crisis levels. Prices in some areas have surpassed those levels and are still going up. That means many real estate investors now own properties that are worth way more than their tax basis. That’s especially likely with a rental property for which you’ve claimed depreciation deductions over the years. Those depreciation write-offs reduced your tax basis in the property, resulting in a bigger taxable gain if you sell.” (MarketWatch)

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