Browse Author: Jean Maday

Director of Commercial Development, Outreach & Services National Association of REALTORS(R)

New REALTOR Benefits® Partner, Xceligent, Creates Competitive Advantage

WASHINGTON (May 14, 2012) – The National Association of Realtors® announced today a strategic alliance with Xceligent, Inc., a leading commercial real estate information services provider.  Xceligent recently acquired ePropertyData from NAR’s strategic investment fund, Second Century Ventures, to create a competitive national alternative in commercial real estate information.

As part of the REALTOR Benefits® Program, Xceligent will be the exclusive provider of commercial real estate information services, including Xceligent’s flagship Premium Research Platform, which will cover the major U.S. markets; a National Public Search Service for marketing properties; and the two commercial information exchange products gained through the ePropertyData acquisition, which are the Basic Broker Loaded Platform and Basic Research Platform. This strategic alliance ensures preferred pricing for Realtors®.

“As a Realtor® who conducts commercial real estate transactions, I am proud NAR has entered into a game-changing partnership for the commercial real estate industry,” said NAR President Moe Veissi, broker-owner of Veissi & Associates Inc., in Miami. “Competition in this marketplace will greatly influence the way commercial real estate professionals conduct business long into the future and grow the industry as a result.”

“Xceligent is excited to partner with NAR at this ground-breaking moment in our industry’s history,” said Doug Curry, Founder and CEO of Xceligent. “Providing Realtors® specially priced access to Xceligent’s proactively researched market information and our new National Public Search platform will energize their businesses and increase their efficiency, allowing them more time to be in front of their clients instead of their computers.”

“This strategic alliance with Xceligent represents the power of partnership within the real estate industry, and more importantly, reinforces how Realtors® benefit from NAR’s REALTOR Benefits® Program,” said Bob Goldberg, NAR senior vice president of Marketing, Business Development and Strategic Investments, and Commercial Services. “With the acquisition of ePropertyData, Xceligent is poised as a truly competitive alternative in the commercial real estate information services market.”

Details of the program will be released in coming weeks.

Xceligent, Inc., a leading provider of commercial real estate information services, is based in Independence, Mo., and has 210 employees. Leveraging an efficient, research-focused model, Xceligent provides commercial real estate professionals with accurate and timely information on commercial real estate availabilities. Xceligent currently provides information services in 30 major U.S. metropolitan markets and has begun the national roll-out to cover the top 65 U.S. markets in 36 months with premium research services per the recently issued Federal Trade Commission consent decree allowing the CoStar/LoopNet merger to proceed.

NAR’s REALTOR Benefits® Program offers practical solutions for Realtors® on the products and services they use every day. The program includes offerings in a variety of categories from nearly 30 companies recognized as leaders in their respective industries.

The National Association of Realtors®, “The Voice for Real Estate,” is America’s largest trade association, representing 1 million members involved in all aspects of the residential and commercial real estate industries.

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10 Predictions for the New Age of Real Estate*

Today’s guest post comes to us from the Institute of Real Estate Management, one of the commercial affiliate organizations of the National Association of REALTORS(R).

*Out of 100 contained in
Transformational Leadership in the New Age of Real Estate, by Christopher Lee, IREM 2012.  Mr. Lee will also be speaking on the topic at the IREM Leadership and Legislative Summit on April 16, 2012.

  1. The best long-term, value-appreciating opportunities in real estate will be found at or adjacent to: (1) major colleges and universities; (2) hospitals; (3) coastal and capital cities; (4) corridor or string cities; (5) 24/7 knowledge cities and financial centers; (6) edge cities; (7) areas surrounding ports and transportation hubs; (8) locations proximate to the growing populations of Hispanics, retirees and Generation Y adults; and (9) niche markets serving growing industries.
  2. Successful real estate companies will generate as much or more revenues from selling knowledge, access to customer bases and non-asset services as they now receive from management fees. A “tenant multiple” metric will emerge in valuation methodologies.
  3. Watch for a rating system to emerge for buildings based on the level of safety and security provided, on the energy efficiency and greening attributes of the building, and on the level of tenant satisfaction.
  4. The talent shortage will continue for years to come as the real estate industry transforms itself from a supplier of services to a provider of knowledge and asset solutions for multiple stakeholders. Watch for a greater reliance on technology, temporary employees, contingent workers, leased employees, specialists, job-share employees, near-shoring and the off-shoring of select functions.
  5. Telecommuting (now an option in 44% of U.S. businesses) will create a generation of “nomadic offices.” Fixed office space is no longer a necessity.
  6. External factors will shift the role of the property manager to the more expansive role of a business manager as building operations increasingly prioritize matters of resource management, energy conservation, asset management, commodities coordination, workplace environment, tenant relationships, safety and security.
  7. $1.1 trillion of new apartment buildings will be needed by 2030.
  8. An abundance of capital will likely keep cap rates low through 2017.
  9. Of the regional/local real estate service firms which existed in 2010, 30% will disappear by 2020.
  10. Look for the creation of a global eBay look-alike for the real estate industry.
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“LIVE” from the REALTORS(R) Land Institute National Land Conference!

We’re here in Denver at the 2012 National Land Conference of the REALTORS(R) Land Institute, with approximately 200 land real estate professionals and a beautiful backdrop of the Colorado mountains.

This morning things are kicking off shortly, with our REALTORS(R) Signature Series Speaker Andre van Rensburg serving as the emcee for the event – up shortly we’ll here from Dr. Mark Dotzour, Chief Economist & Director of Research at Texas A & M University.

Stay tuned as we live blog!

9:22 am:  Dotzour on stage now.

9:23 am:  Dotzour “The Good – claims for unemployment dropping, unemployment benefits dropping, consumer spending is increasing, consumer debt is increasing, car sales are strong, car lending is getting agressive, manufacturing is rebounding, corporate profits at record levels, farm land prices rocketing, apartment prices rocketing”

9:39 am:   Dotzour “US Economy is a Massive Botox Operation”

9:44 am:  Dotzour “we are exactly on the same road as Greece”

9:48 am:  Dotzour “what happens if long rates increase?  Fed Reserve takes huge loss on trillion dollar portfolio of mortgages and treasuries”

9:53 am:  Dotzour “reason America, our farm land and our stock market looks good is because Europe is on life support”

9:55am:  Dotzour “2012 will be a year of slow growth, but we need to watch out for 2013”

9:56am:  Dotzour “Outlook for 2012: businesses continue to postpone decisions, job growth slow but positive, interest rates stay low, high gas prices punish retailers, threats of budget crisis will scare the public, uncertainty of 2013 will stifle growth, Europe and China will continue to lose steam”

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Up Next:  “Where’s the Money?”  with KC Conway, CRE,MAI, Executive  Managing Director of Real Estate Analytics – Colliers International

10:02 am   Conway “Start of 2012 is eerily similar to the start of 2011”

10:04 am   Conway “modest or no growth (<1.5% GDP) while government can’t act”

10:14 am  Conway “look at GDP outside the US for key indicators, as bell-weathers for the US”

10:22 am    Conway “2012 and 2013 are peak years with more than $350 billion each year in CRE debt maturities.  Banks have 45% of outstanding $3.0 trillion in CRE debt”

10:31 am  Conway “it’s time to re-examine our market perceptions”

Top 5 Questions of CommercialSource.com

Today’s post comes from of an article just published in Commercial Connections, NAR’s commercial real estate publication.

 

#5 “My firm is interested in having its commercial real estate listings displayed on your site. How do we make that happen?”

ANSWER: Data content provider (DCP) agreements are available without a fee to assist commercial real estate firms, commercial information exchanges (CIEs), and multiple listings services (MLS) in aggregating and uploading active listing data to CommercialSource.com.  If you are a commercial real estate firm, CIE or MLS, email [email protected] to request a data content provider agreement.

#4 “I don’t want to spend time looking at property that’s either under agreement or sold. How up-to-date are CommercialSource.com listings?”

ANSWER: CommercialSource.com data is refreshed by data content providers throughout the day keeping listings fresh every few hours.  CommercialSource.com also offers individual accounts for brokers to load their listings manually. Brokers with these individual accounts are expected to maintain the accuracy of those listings.  If you are operating an individual account on CommercialSource.com and would like to have your listings uploaded through a feed, contact us at [email protected] for a consultation.

 #3 “I created an account but I am unable to enter my listing data. What do I do now?”

ANSWER: In this case, it is likely that the user already has their listings on the site via a data feed.  When creating an account on CommercialSource.com, users are asked to specify a CIE, MLS or firm from the dropdown list of data content providers IF they are a client of one of those entities (if you are not you simply specify ‘other’.)  If the user is a client of one of the data content providers they will not be able to upload listings manually.  By doing this, CommercialSource.com avoids the possibility of duplication of active listings data.

#2 “I would like more photos/marketing tools/printable demographic reports/page hits for my listings on CommercialSource.com. When will those be made available?”

ANSWER: In its current form, CommercialSource.com provides the search and display of commercial real estate listings at no cost to REALTORS®.  In order to provide additional enhancements on the site,CommercialSource.com should reach a tipping point of active listings.  We’re almost there!  The greater the participation on the site, the faster we all reach our goal of a cost effective, fully-enhanced national platform formarketing commercial listings.

#1 “How do I get my listings on CommercialSource.com?”

ANSWER: There are two ways to get your active listings on CommercialSource.com.   1) Check the CommercialSource list of data content providers at commercialsource.com/DataProviders. Ifyour CIE or MLS is listed, your commercial real estate listings are already aggregated and fed to CommercialSource.com for search and display.  Or you can 2) Go to CommercialSource.com and click on‘Create an Account’.  Once your account is approved you will be able to create a broker-load account where you can upload and manage your listings as well as create a broker profile.

 

 

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NICAR Social Media Event Wrapup

NICAR logoEarlier this week, I had the pleasure and privilege of participating as a panelist on social media at an event held by the Northern Illinois Commercial Association of REALTORS® (NICAR).  Joining me was Brian Basilico from B2b Interactive Marketingwho happens to know a lot about using social and digital media,  AND he is extreme fan of bacon.    Score!   (BTW, you can follow him on Twitter via @bbasilico) With about 35 or so commercial REALTORS® and their guests in the room – Brian and I took questions for the better part of an hour – sharing our thoughts and perspectives on how this segment of the industry can utilize social media to build business.     What I learned is that for many commercial practitioners there is still a lot of apprehension about how to get started, the time involved to manage, and how to leverage social networks.

BUILD YOUR BRAND

Creating a LinkedIn profile, using Twitter to engage in conversation and share knowledge, or whatever other network or digital space you choose – you must remember the content you put out there reflects you and the brand you are building.    Provide relevant content that is meaningful.  But always remember, it is o.k. to let a little of your personality come through.  After all, that too is part of your brand.

LISTEN TO THE COMMUNITY

It’s not all about you.  Plain and simple – listen.  Make connections with people in your small communities, and think beyond geographic boundaries.  For example, if you do industrial, follow the #industrial hashtag.  If your business is in Fargo, ND – you’ll want to make sure you are following or connected to other business leaders, civic organizations and other community groups in Fargo.   Seek out people that you share something in common with your business and connect to them.

BUILD RELATIONSHIPS “IN REAL LIFE

Social networks may create the connection or spark the relationship – but it takes real life experiences and time to build a relationship that may – I say “may” because there are no guarantees – lead to sales, profit or growth for your business.    The technology of social networks enables you to spread word of mouth, and your message faster and to a broader audience than ever before.   It is still up to you – a human being – to create meaningful conversations and develop a long-lasting and mutually beneficial partnership.

If you need help – we’re here for you.    Connect with me and I’ll point you in the right direction or help you take action to get started.    One great resources is NAR’s e-PRO course; while not specific to commercial real estate, it does offer a very strong overview of social media, the basics of getting started and some very helpful tips and tools.

Tips for Beginners from Twitter Commercial Real Estate Influencers

I posed the question of our @commsource followers, “What is your #1 #CRE tip for colleague just starting on Twitter?

Here’s what they had to say..

@BoBarronCCIM:     Follow those with influence and followers and just watch for a month or 2 – then start engaging.

@SB_CRE:     Follow @SB_CRE. 😉 Just kidding. Follow @Michael_MBA, because he posts great links! (My note: DO follow @SB_CRE <- great content!)

@StephenHBenoit:     Don’t make your twitter only about self promotion.

@dukelong:     Wear Dark Glasses.  and Listen!

@clamstorm:     Let your tweets reflect your personality, interests, knowledge and expertise. Enjoy.

@ComAdvisors:     Provide relevant content for your followers, not just about yourself but about your industry/market too.

@JohnZiemba:      Follow the #cre (commercial real estate) hashtag, make lists now, follow industry publications & orgs

@cbrememphis:   Use it as a vehicle to learn, share what you’ve learned and truly connect. Saves the sales pitches for face to face.

@MemphisRealtors:        We think it’s all about the shared community. Growing relationships + making new connections.

@cbrememphisDT:     RE is very tied into the community so realize that you are not only selling your co., but your community

 

I’ll continue to add to this list, and if you have something you’d like to add – please leave a comment below!

Chirp! Chirp!

 

 

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Tenant Representation: Getting Educated By the Pros!

Last week, we were on-site at the Keller Williams Family Reunion (#KWFR for those of you on Twitter that want to see more conversation).   Aside from a tremendous crowd – there was plenty of commercial real estate learning going on.   Becky Leebens, CCIM, Managing is Director of KW Commercial Midwest in Eagan, Minnesota – was gracious to provide us with recap of the session  from a panel of tenant representation experts.  Thanks Becky!

Rarely are we able to hear the personal business strategies of successful real estate professionals like those offered at KW Family Reunion (KWFR).   Last week in Orlando, Florida over 9,000 residential  and commercial real estate agents gathered in one spot, the largest real estate gathering in the country.  In a down market, when commissions are scarce, why do agents spend thousands to attend this event?  To network, collaborate, and more importantly, to find out how the industry pros drive their business to the top!

I have been part of the commercial real estate community for over 15 years, but never have I had the opportunity to meet with hundreds of successful commercial real estate brokers in one place to find out where and how they do their business like I have at KWFR.  There were 8-10 breakouts over the 4 day period for commercial  brokers including investment sales, utilizing technology and social media, converting tenants to buyers using SBA 504 just to name a few.  But this event goes beyond that. This is an event where brokers not only share their insights, but they actually reveal the secrets to their success and will even invite you to be part of their team!

As an illustration of this experience, let me give you a peek in to the Tenant Representation breakout session.   This session was presented by Michelle Rich Goode.  Michelle has over 26 years in commercial real estate and was one of the first in her area to create a tenant representation firm in Raleigh, North Carolina.  The panelists included Powell McGill, from Manassas Va, who, early in his career, worked directly with Julien J. Studley, the pioneer of tenant representation; Bill Langley, a Commercial Director with over 20 years of experience out of Atlanta, Georgia;  and myself.  This experienced and diverse panel shared their expertise ranging from how to handle client objections to the details of a lease transaction.   For example, clients often think they don’t need a tenant rep broker because they either have a good relationship with their current landlord or because they think they can’t afford one.  The panel countered these objections by stating they are exclusive tenant rep’s (do not represent Landlord’s at all), offered market knowledge, and by thoroughly explaining how their fee is typically paid by Landlord.  They walked through a 25,000 sf tenant rep case study explaining each step, highlighting key points and discussing the various strategies they take with their client through the process.    The highpoints of the presentation included:  winning the assignment, the process timeline,  space planning, construction costs, lease checklist and analyzing the deal. The room was filled with commercial brokers who were given direct access to experts who gave them a variety of knowledge and tools, which they could now incorporate into their own business models.  The breakout ended with a question and answer session, and an invitation to be part of the International Tenant Representation Practice Group these professionals have created within KW Commercial.   This was not only an hour jam packed with information, but it also included an invitation to be in business with this A-Team!  Wow.

Needless to say, it’s very difficult to briefly describe in words all of the benefits of this high energy, five day experience called the KW Family Reunion.  In short, I’m honored to be in business with these high level professionals and look forward to seeing them again in Dallas next year.

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Annual Commercial Real Estate Conference Chicago – Fireside Chat with Debra Cafaro and Sam Zell

I had the pleasure of attending the RECG 10th Annual Commercial Real Estate Forecast Conference in Chicago this week – starting off my Tuesday morning with a fireside chat between Debra Cafaro and Sam Zell.  .    Well over 1000 commercial real estate practitioners, lenders, developers and others were standing room only at the event.  Here’s some of the “live” recap from Debra and Sam’s chat:

 

8:06 am    Good Morning !  Things are getting started shortly.

8:15 am   Over 1000 people registered for this 10Th annual Commercial Real Estate Conference.  Organizers say it’s pre-recession levels.  Perhaps a good sign.

8:19 am Sam Zell and Debra Cafaro starting their fireside chat.

8:21 am Zell:  “Come clean by the end of ’13”

8:23 am  Zell:  “very little likelihood we’ll see new supply in the next 24-36 months”

8:25 am  Cafaro: “In a market with mixed messages – How do you decide to move forward as an investor, etc?”   Zell:  “Right now, the opportunities are linear.  Always transactions, always opportunity, unique situations” “Pick your spots, have a lot of patience.”

8:29 am  Cafaro: ” Retail thoughts?”  Zell:  “Retail, more than any other form of real estate has a very serious obsolesence (sp?) factor” “Disposable income has modified, hard to see growth in retail”

8:32 am  Cafaro: “We’re seeing you invest in partnership in 200 S Wacker, relatively small – why?”  Zell: ” It was very cheap, and made sense.  That was the only office building that made sense”

8:36 am  Zell: (on office) “We’re in a major downsizing.  There are many multi-national corporations in the US that have more employees overseas than previous.  And there has been no employee growth so…no growth”

8:38 am Zell:  (on hotel) “Hotel business has been largely over-supplied.  Tourism is attractive, dollar is relatively cheap, hotel business in 24/7 cities could benefit from no new supply”

8:40 am Cafaro:  “Multifamily – you love apartments, can you talk about EQR and the multifamily sector?”  Zell: “Have to add in single family market here…I think, American people have adjusted their love affair with single family house.   This dramatic mental change has lead to highest occupancy rates, somewhat unlimited demand….Multifamily business is, at this moment, best part of real estate industry – and will probably stay this way”

8:48 am Cafaro: “International – you’ve invested all over the world.  Let’s stay away from Europe for a second and talk about the Brazils, the Mongolias,….”    Zell:  “Simple answer.  Demand.”

8:50 am Zell ” Beauty of our international focus is where is the demand today and where will it be tomorrow.   Mongolia – enormous resources and geographically closer to China…and their economy is growing at rate of 20%”

8:52 am Cafaro:  “Let’s talk about our European leaders….and real estate”    Zell: “Why would anyone in their right mind invested in Europe?  There is zero or negative growth”

8:54 am Cafaro:  “You feel very strongly about the political environment”  Zell: “We cannot grow unless people are confident.  Destabilization of American economy is very dangerous.  We are the most predictable country in the world”

8:58 am Zell: “US cannot grow until there has been a replenishment of confidence.  This can only happen with the right leadership”

8:59 am  Cafaro: “What would you be leading with to get the economy and real estate market back?”  Zell:  “I would stop all new regulations.  We can’t handle what we have already”

9:04 am Cafaro: “You have truly been an amazing visionary in a way that has benefited all of us.  What do you want your legacy to be?   Zell: “I have always been a man of my word.   Clarity, principled, somebody who was given the opportunity.

9:07 am Zell:  ” I want people to think I thought about things, reflected on them, and had a global view.   And that I followed the 11th commandment:  Thou shall not take oneself seriously.”

9:08 am Cafaro “Thank you Sam”

 

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Investment Analysis Skills a Must in Today’s Residential Market

Today’s guest blog post is from Joseph A. Fisher, CCIM from Indianapolis, IN

The pricing and availability of single-family homes in today’s market has attracted a new crop of buyers – investors. These investors are looking at homes, condominiums and duplexes from a different perspective than traditional buyers; they are interested in loan-to-value ratio, rate of return and, ultimately, cash flows.

The skill set required to calculate and analyze investment measures can typically be found among commercial brokers.

Recognizing this, the CCIM Institute now offers 1-day workshop – Residential Real Estate Financial Analysis – designed for residential agents who want to attract new business. The course will be offered Nov. 10th  at the REALTORS(R) Conference and Expo in Anaheim, CA.

Through interactive use of custom Excel spreadsheets, this hands-on workshop walks agents through time value of money (TVM) concepts and the measures of investment performance regularly used to analyze investment properties.  The course also displays the impact of leverage on an investment, and concludes with a case study involving a couple looking to purchase a single-family home as a rental property.

Using this case study, agents are able to display the projected revenues and expenses for the investment property, and provide clients with a detailed financial pro forma so that the clients can make an informed decision on whether to move forward with the purchase.

 “This class was by far the most useful and best class I’ve ever taken,” says Steve Ehlinger with NAI Latter & Blum Inc., who attended the class in January 2011. “I have read at least a dozen books on investment property and own several properties personally. Every book recommends using the same formulas to determine IRR, NPV, cap rates, etc. I have always wanted to somehow put them on a spreadsheet to simplify the process but could never figure out a way to do it and simplify it. [The Excel spreadsheets are] an invaluable tool to use to help clients make a sound financial decision with their purchases.”

The workshop also serves as an introduction to the commercial side of the real estate business for residential agents who are considering moving into the commercial arena, and an opportunity for new commercial agents to enhance their basic financial analysis skills.

Private investors who want to learn basic financial analysis skills to apply to their investment portfolio as well as future acquisitions can also benefit from this course.

I look forward to seeing you Nov. 10. Learn more and registration information>

 

 

4 Benefits to Owning Commercial Real Estate

Nicholas Dunlap, CPM, is the Vice President of Dunlap Property Group, a full service real estate investment & management firm headquartered in Fullerton, California. You can read his outlook on business and investing at his blog.

While some investors strategically amass their real estate investment portfolios, others enter into the arena accidentally or perhaps unintentionally.  And whether you are a seasoned investor who has weathered the storms of multiple real estate cycles or the accidental landlord who has recently inherited a piece of property, there are four benefits to owning commercial real estate that benefit you both.

Everyone knows that it’s wise to own commercial real estate and sure, there are the two obvious reasons: the potential for cash flow and equity buildup.  But equally if not more important are the two lesser-known benefits of tax shelter and the hedge against inflation that real estate can provide.   Combined, these four benefits far outweigh those of any other investment vehicle in the marketplace.

As I refer to commercial real estate herein, I am speaking of multifamily, retail, office, self-storage and commercial property types.  Whether you have 1 tenant or 100 tenants, your commercial property should generate income.  The aforementioned benefits are those associated with income property so it should be known that these benefits would also apply to a piece of residential property, like a condominium or SFR were it rented out to tenants.   Whether you start small and rent out a house, participate in a group real estate investment or acquire a commercial property on your own, you will want to be familiar with these benefits to enhance the investment experience and ensure the optimum performance of your portfolio.

Hear more from Mr. Dunlap at the IREM Fall Leadership Conference on Thursday, October 13 at 4:00pm when he participates in a panel discussion Tales from the Front: An Upfront and Honest Discussion on Starting Your Career.”