Thursday, October 16, 2008

Award winners identify emerging trends

The University of Michigan Land Use Institute Real Estate Forum Excellent Award winners were asked to identify what they thought would be emerging trends in their field. Here are highlights of those responses.

Robert Pliska of Sperry Van Ness: Having good relationships with mortgage bankers. “It’s always been that way, but more so now with the way the economy is,” he said.

Aaron Young of The Wisinski Group: Property owners have to be very sensitive to their tenants, as they will be asking for more concessions. Right now, owners aren’t looking three steps ahead and they should be because their loan-to-value ration could drop. “Equity leases were big a few years ago, and these might come back,” he said. Young also said there is additional pressure on brokerage companies because leases are stronger than sales.

Marcel Burgler of Prime Development: Urban universities will be a catalyst for development. “If you look at the sectors that are growing it’s health care, education and, unfortunately, government,” he said.

Colin Kraay of Grubb & Ellis/Paramount Commerce: Doing a thorough due diligence. “We had to use incredibly in-depth market knowledge to get (the deal done. Due Diligence is going to become more important for brokers as we move forward. From a broker’s standpoint, it’s a return to due diligence and market research,” he said.

Jon Rooks of Parkland Properties: Cooperation with state and local governments will become more important. “There are a lot of tools in the tool box. The state of Michigan is excellent with incentives. Our city government is also excellent,” he said. He also said there would be less new construction, but more renovations of existing buildings. He felt the conversion of apartments into condos was over, but downtowns will thrive because people want to live in those districts and they are willing to downsize their lifestyles to do that.

Randall Allman of CB Richard Ellis: More seller financing and more leasing activities. “We have to be creative and put the two opportunities together to get to the end,” he said.

Duke Suwyn of Grubb & Ellis/Paramount Commerce: Low-skilled, high-paying jobs are gone and so are the large manufacturing plants. Public-private partnerships are vital. Brokers have to be cooperative and do what is best for a community. “We have to get things down to size to meet the market,” he said of large industrial plants.

—David Czurak

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