Absorption, Vacancy Benchmarks Continue to Drift Sideways As Retailers Shake Out Closed Stores
Following a recent string of relentlessly unexciting market trends in retail real estate over the past several quarters comes this distinctly positive news for retail property owners -- quoted asking rents have finally turned upward across all retail property types in the U.S. for the first time since 2008.
"This is a symbolic victory," said CoStar real estate economist Ryan McCullough, who co-presented the First-Quarter 2013 Retail Review and Outlook with Suzanne Mulvee, director of U.S. research, retail for Property and Portfolio Research (PPR), CoStar's analytics and economic forecasting company.
This reversal of bad fortune for landlords, which started with rental rate increases in higher-end institutional retail and a few scattered metros of several quarters ago, is the culmination of 2 ½ years of steady fundamentals recovery in retail, he said.
"We’re finally to the point where the average asset is showing steady rent growth again," McCullough said.
Mulvee made note that the 70% of U.S. retail markets that reported positive rent growth during the first quarter represents "a true turning point for the market" into a broad-based recovery.
Without getting too carried away, it should be clearly noted that plenty of challenges remain for owners, tenants and retailers. Rents aren't going to shoot upward and fundamentals are continuing to improve slowly or move sideways.
Muted absorption appears to be the new normal, with a light 17 million square feet in net absorption for the first quarter, down slightly from a year ago, as retailers continue to shed stores and consolidate into stronger shopping centers. Leading year-over-year demand growth are western markets such as Dallas-Fort Worth, Phoenix, Denver, Salt Lake City and San Diego.
With little new construction, vacancies continue to edge downward, with progress still slowed by about 19 million square feet of store closures tracked by CoStar - space shed by such chains as Fashion Bug and Big Lots, as well as hangover from already downsized retailers like Barnes & Noble and Blockbuster.
CoStar expects construction to pick up a bit in 2013 as shifting population opens new pockets of wealth. The first developments to come back have been outlet centers, with six centers under construction across the U.S. and another dozen in the planning stages - and some shopping centers being converted to outlet space.
Power centers and malls are at the lower end of the vacancy spectrum at about 5.9%, while neighborhood centers are starting to rebound, with total store openings exceeding closings by a fairly wide margin.
Demand for malls and especially power centers by category killer retailers such as Best Buy and Staples remains under attack by e-commerce, including the advent of Amazon.com's same-day delivery, Mulvee said. When new construction ramps up again, stronger retailers will gravitate toward the newer centers -- and power centers are like to go dark as a result, McCullough said, adding, "In 10 years, we may be saying the same thing about dead power centers as we do today about dead malls."
The broadening scope of the recovery was reflected in the sentiments of webinar attendees surveyed by CoStar following the retail market presentation:
Lisa Diehl of Diehl and Partners, LLC, of Edina, MN, said the climate for retail investment is strong in the Minneapolis market.
"We had our issues during the downturn, but we're recovering. Everyone I speak with is busier than they were last year, and have done better through May than they did in the entirety of last year. That's a positive sign of activity picking up," Diehl said.
That said, prospects are still playing it safe, she added.
"Landlords are trying to push the rents higher if they can get it. There's still some uncertainly, but things are improving," Diehl said.
John E. Crump, director with HFF in Los Angeles and an investment sales broker mainly focused on California, Arizona and Nevada markets, picked up especially on Phoenix’s relative outperformance on job growth. He found the discussion of the return of the wealth effect and positive rent growth for the first time nationally since 2008 to be of particular note.
"In the California, Nevada and Arizona markets, we are seeing much fewer distressed sales and more stabilized assets," Crump said. "There is a notable lack of product versus supply, and coupled with the ample available low price debt, pricing is at or near peak for coastal areas and improving in the Inland Empire, Las Vegas and Arizona - areas clobbered by the housing downturn."
Almost all property types are performing well with grocery/drug and top-tier malls in highest demand, and other property types following suit improved pricing.
"We foresee continued strength in the next three quarters as investor demand greatly exceeds available supply," Crump said.
"While we have room to grow, I like the favorable and consistent 'North Easterly' trends we are seeing," said Brian Capo, associate with the Marcus & Millichap office in Orlando, FL, another housing-bust market. "Lots or tenants are expanding into Florida, and this will help curb our retail vacancies."
On the investment front, the single-tenant net lease market in properties with national credit tenants is simply "white hot," with numbers surpassing even the mid-2000s boom, according to Capo.
"When a true triple-net deal is put on the market, it does not last long," Capo said. "Investors are aggressive, and meeting the seller's price points. Capitalization rate have compressed rapidly over the last 60 days, in some cases by 50 basis points, he added.
NY Times May 14, 2013 Author: Malia Wollan
SAN FRANCISCO — In the month since two men violently shoved him to the ground and stole his iPhone 5, Dalton Huckaby has almost completely stopped calling his mother. It usually takes him a full day to text his friends back. Nothing personal, but Mr. Huckaby is just too frightened to take his replacement iPhone out in public.
"I never thought this would happen to me,” said Mr. Huckaby, 39, a personal trainer, who since the robbery, which he called an iCrime, has become the kind of person who patrols his neighborhood streets in San Francisco warning strangers about the dangers of using their smartphones out in the open.
Phone theft, especially of Apple’s coveted iPhones, has increased sharply in recent years. Last year, nearly half of all robberies in San Francisco involved a smartphone.
So, how do people like Mr. Huckaby deal with the stress after a phone theft? How do you dodge robbers in the first place? And what should you do if your phone is stolen?
Here are some suggestions:
BE LIKE A DOLPHIN Dolphins sleep with one eye open, to stay semi-alert to lurking predators and unexpected danger. If you need to use your phone in the wilds of the subway or sidewalk, do so discreetly, reserving at least a portion of your cognitive capacity for minding what is happening around you. Avoid leaving your phone on the table at restaurants, bars and coffee shops where it can easily be snatched. Thieves have perfected robbery tactics based on patterns of typical nonchalant public smartphone behavior, the police say. Consider the sidewalk texter, casually holding the phone in front while walking, or more likely weaving, down the street. “A popular move is to slap the victim in the back of the head,” said Edward Santos Jr., a San Francisco police lieutenant. “The phone goes flying up in the air and many of these guys have gotten so good they’ll catch the phone in midair.” So long, phone.
LOCK IT UP Most thieves erase all identifying information from a phone within hours, sometimes minutes, after stealing it. Still, passwords on your phone’s home screen can help protect your personal information in case it isn’t wiped clean. A San Francisco woman whose iPhone was stolen from a San Francisco bar in January got a call a week later from Peru from a man threatening to publicly post nude photos he found on her password-free phone if she did not pay him, the police said. Avoid such unpleasantries by using a simple password, which can easily be enabled on both iPhone and Android devices.
KNOW YOUR NUMERALS Write down your phone’s model number, serial number and unique device identification number. If your phone is stolen you’ll want to report these numbers to the police and to your carrier. There are several ways to find your phone’s International Mobile Equipment Identifier or IMEI number. On most phones, you can dial *#06# and the number will pop up on your screen. Alternatively, turn the phone off, take the battery out and find the IMEI and serial number on the label under the battery. On an iPhone, go into Settings, click General and then click About and you will find a page listing your phone’s model and serial number and IMEI code. Save these numbers where you can retrieve them easily.
USE LOCATION TRACKING APPS When a phone is stolen, one of the first questions the police will ask is whether you have a tracking app. The police have recovered stolen phones by tracking the GPS signal trail straight to a robber’s pocket or backpack. But for the apps to work, the phone has to stay on. Increasingly, the police say, practiced thieves know to turn the phone off and wrap it in aluminum foil before turning it back on, which thwarts the tracking technology. Still, it is worth installing an application to monitor your phone’s whereabouts. Apple makes a free app, Find My iPhone, which can be turned on in Apple’s iCloud or downloaded from iTunes. Android users have several options for free third-party tracking apps including Where’s My Droid and Lookout. In addition to broadcasting a phone’s location, many antitheft apps allow you to remotely lock your phone, wipe it clean of sensitive information and even remotely set off a screaming phone alarm.
BRICK IT If your phone is stolen, immediately report the theft to the police and your carrier. Start with the police. Give them your IMEI and serial number and the password to remotely log in to your tracking app. Once you’ve finished dealing with the police, call your carrier. Tell your carrier to disable, or brick, your device, which will lock it and prohibit anyone else from activating it, even with a new SIM card. The carrier should add your IMEI number to a national database of blacklisted phones. The database keeps track of the phone’s IMEI number to prevent it from being activated. But the police say the database is largely ineffective because many stolen phones end up overseas, out of the carrier’s reach, and because thieves are able to modify the IMEI number. Still, it’s better to have the phone entered in the database than not.
The Federal Communications Commission’s guide to stolen and lost phones recommends that you ask your carrier for written confirmation that your phone has been reported stolen and that they have disabled it. If you are an A.T.&T. customer, call 1-800-331-0500; Verizon, call 1-800-922-0204; Sprint, call 1-888-211-4727; and T-Mobile, call 1-800-937-8997. The F.C.C. maintains a full list of carrier contacts for reporting stolen phones.
CHANGE YOUR PASSWORDS Even if your carrier bricks your stolen phone, you should change your passwords for any social networking sites, e-mail, banks and health care sites you may have visited from your phone.
BECOME A LATE ADOPTER Less than a week after the iPhone 5 was released on Sept. 21, 2012, barely used phones turned up for sale at makeshift kiosks at flea markets in Oakland, Calif., known hot spots for peddling stolen merchandise, according to the police.
Last month a woman was held up for her iPhone by two men, one with a gun, in El Cerrito, Calif., just east of San Francisco. After she handed it over, the robbers took one look at her older model iPhone and gave it back to her, the police said. Just like the Apple fanatics camping out in front of Apple stores before a new iPhone is released, thieves want the latest model, too. Having one can make you a target.
A version of this article appeared in print on May 9, 2013, on page B9 of the New York edition with the headline: Outsmarting Smartphone Thieves.
Newsday Originally published: May 8, 2013 12:28 PM
Updated: May 8, 2013 12:57 PM
For sale: two-story, red brick building on a 28,000-square-foot lot that doubles as a nuclear fallout shelter. Close to downtown and transportation. But there's a catch: you'll need to do something about the bars on the doors.
Yonkers is trying to unload the city's 87-year-old jail on Alexander Street, hoping the right developer will come along to transform the dilapidated property into an upscale retail establishment such as a cafe or five-star restaurant.
And that's proving easier said than done.
Mayor Mike Spano put out requests for proposals from developers last month, but didn't get any takers. Now city officials are enlisting help from commercial real estate brokers in an effort to market the downtown property for redevelopment.
Spano says the building is a local landmark and wants to preserve its classic facade.
"We want to maintain at least the outside of the building. I'm adamant about that," he told Newsday recently. "But it's probably one of the main reasons it's been difficult to sell to developers."
He plans to have the old jail closed by this summer and house all city detainees in holding cells at the Cacace Justice Center on South Broadway.
The project is a small, but crucial piece, of Yonkers' long-term plans for transforming a run-down industrial riverfront corridor into a pedestrian-friendly retail center built around the revamped Beaux-Arts Metro-North train station.
Alexander Street already boasts new apartment buildings, renovated historic buildings and riverfront walkways, as well as a gleaming $35 million public library overlooking the Hudson River. But the old jail sticks out like a sore thumb.
"The waterfront should be a place to shop, live or walk," Spano said. "It's not the right place for a jail."
PRESERVING ARCHITECTURAL LEGACY
Municipal buildings are often overlooked as drab edifices of brick and mortar.
But there's a rich history and architectural beauty to be found in many of Yonkers' old schools, firehouses and the old jail, many of which were constructed in the late 19th and early 20th centuries as monuments of detail and decoration.
The old jail, built between 1926 and 1927, was designed by architect William P. Katz, a Yonkers native who died in 1941, but not before he dreamed up designs behind many of the city's historic buildings. Few of them remain intact.
The jail's exterior is rough after years of neglect but has many of the architectural features of its era, including an arched limestone pediment surrounding the solid steel front door and terra cotta detailing around the windows and roofline.
That's what makes the old building worth preserving, city officials say.
"We're trying to preserve our history," said Colleen Roche, a city planner who is overseeing the project. "There's not a lot of old buildings left in the downtown."
While the jail isn't a protected landmark, it's eligible for listing on the National Register of Historic Places. Yonkers hasn't done appraisals of the jail, but Spano estimates that the site is conservatively worth more than $1.6 million.
There are several other redevelopment projects in the approval pipeline along Alexander Street, she said, including plans to convert a site across the street from the jail, occupied by a school bus company, into a housing complex.
FINDING THE RIGHT DEVELOPER
Real estate brokers say if the city markets the building to the right buyers, with the right plan, it could work.
"This is an iconic property that has a lot going for it," said Paul Adler, vice president at Rand Commercial Services, which has consulted the city on the sale of the old jail. "I could see this building maintaining its 1920s facade, maybe as a brewery or a high-end restaurant, with a peaked glass roof and antique lampposts out front for a historic look."
He said the building's proximity to the train station and downtown makes it even more desirable.
Other cities have had success in redeveloping old jails by keeping the facades intact.
In Boston, Mass., the dilapidated old Charles Street Jail was converted into the Liberty Hotel in 2007. In Newark, N.J., city officials converted an old jail into government office space while preserving the building's exterior.
Residents who live along the riverfront say they'd welcome more upgrades to the neighborhood.
"It's really becoming a kind of a cool area," said Laura Garcia, who was walking her dog along the riverfront past the Hudson Park North apartment complex, which opened in 2008. "Not long ago, you wouldn't even come down here."
A CHANGING OF THE GUARD
Police officials say the old jail has served them well, but admit without major renovations, its time has passed.
Yonkers has a 20-cell jail at the Cacace Justice Center, which was built two decades ago, but Spano says it has been underutilized -- with cells being used as municipal storage instead of for holding prisoners. He couldn't say why previous mayors didn't make use of the newer jail.
By comparison, the 32-cell Alexander Street jail is functionally obsolete.
The cell blocks are Spartan, with black iron bars, and are operated by skeleton keys. There's no air conditioning, paint is peeling from the walls and officers work in cramped rooms, some of which have been converted from old cells.
"It's a dump, but it's held up pretty good over the years," said Lt. Keith Olson, president of the Yonkers Police Benevolent Association, which represents the city's rank-and-file police officers. "If those walls could talk."
Capt. Emil Cavorti, who oversees the jail, said the facility still houses inmates but mostly as overnight detainees.
"Most people stay less than 24 hours," he told Newsday during a tour of the dilapidated facility. "If you have the unfortunate luck to get arrested late Saturday night, you're going to spend the rest of the weekend with us."
He is looking forward to moving into the high-tech jail, which is planned for the next few months.
Cavorti couldn't say if any notable criminals have spent the night in the city jail, which several decades ago housed inmates for stretches of up to 30 days. And as far as he knows, nobody has ever busted out of the place.
"I couldn't tell you if Al Capone ever stayed here," Cavorti said with a sheepish grin. "But he could have."
April 30, 2013 Lohud
Author: Alex Taylor
NYACK — A proposed $19 million boutique hotel on High Avenue came one step closer to reality after the Nyack Zoning Board of Appeals on Monday issued zoning variances for the project.
The developer, WY Management LLC, had sought the village’s approval to convert a vacant manufacturing facility at 400 High Ave. into a 132-room hotel with a steakhouse, radio station and conference center.
The variance was needed to add two floors to the existing structure: a two-story, 40,000-square-foot corrugated metal building next to Oak Hill Cemetery and Exit 11 of the New York State Thruway.
Because the area is zoned as a manufacturing district, a special permit was also needed, officials said.
“Our land use board has done its usual good work,” Nyack Mayor Jen Laird-White said Tuesday. “A great idea looks like it may be coming to fruition as a great project.”
Michael Yanko and Kerry Wellington, co-owners of WY Management, declined to comment Tuesday.
Once built, the hotel will be managed by Nylo Hotels, a boutique chain with hotels in Texas and Rhode Island, with another planned for New York.
Architectural renderings of 400 High Ave. show a stylish, loft-like design, including brick and glass siding and extensive outdoor landscaping. In addition to the 184-seat restaurant, the hotel will feature a bar and fitness center.
The site was formerly occupied by Stoffel Seals Corp., a plasticsand metal manufacturer that relocated to Congers about five years ago. WY Management bought the property for a reported $4.2 million.
A Best Western — the only other hotel in the village — is a block away on Polhemus Street.
The village Planning Board will meet Monday to vote on final site approval — the last step before construction.
“Once the Planning Board gives a final they can commence the building permit process for construction,” Nyack Village Attorney Walter Sevastian said. “They’re getting close.”
The hotel is expected to open late 2014, according to the developer’s website.
Earlier this year, the Rockland County Industrial Development Agency approved exemptions on the sales and mortgage recording tax to help the project. Developers are also negotiating a payment in lieu of taxes on the site.
WY Management recently opened an office at 79 Main St. in Nyack. The developer also is converting the former MetLifeFinancial Services Building in Broxville into multifamily apartments
LoHud.com April 27, 2013
Written by Theresa Juva Brown
Tappan Zee Constructors is finalizing a deal that would temporarily move state police and Thruway Authority facilities from Tarrytown to West Nyack during construction of the new Tappan Zee Bridge, state officials confirmed Friday.
TZC is about to sign a lease for a 42,000-square-foot warehouse at 160 N. Route 303. It is the former site of The Journal News Rockland printing operation and is now owned by Hauser Brothers, a construction contracting group.
This latest deal comes just weeks after Tappan Zee Constructors moved hundreds of project employees to new, leased office space on Old White Plains Road in Tarrytown.
“It’s exciting,” said Paul Adler, vice president at Rand Commercial Services, which is handling the West Nyack deal. “Folks, particularly in commercial real estate, have been suffering. … To finally see the light at the end of the tunnel — and it’s not a train coming at you — is critically important.”
As part of the bridge project contract, TZC will tear down the existing state police and Thruway buildings on South Broadway and use the land as a construction staging area.
After the $4 billion project is completed, TZC will rebuild those facilities. In the meantime, it has agreed to pay to relocate those agencies.
The asking price for the West Nyack warehouse was $6.25 per square foot, according to a listing on Rand’s website.
Adler said Rand has been preparing to assist with the space needs of the Tappan Zee project since last year, including setting up a Web page, www.tappanzeebridgeinfo.com, which advertises various types of available properties in Westchester and Rockland.
In addition to commercial properties, Adler expects a growing demand for housing as project workers arrive in the area. That will benefit everyone, he said.
“Everything from the dry cleaners to the pizza shop to restaurants and hotels, all of them get a shot in the arm,” he said. “Coming out of the long, dark, deep recession, this is just the kind of bump people need to restart the engine.”
In fact, Wedged-in Deli and Catering at 605 Old White Plains Rd., not far from the new TZC office, is already getting a bump as occupants of the newly filled office space turn to the family operated business for their food needs.
“They have been ordering some catering from us and coming in during lunchtime,” deli manager Harrison Yu said. “It’s helping us, but we are definitely expecting more as construction goes full on.”
Brian Conybeare, Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s special adviser on the project, called such signs “just the beginning of the positive economic impact” the project will have on the region.
April 24, 2013
By: Mark Hickey, Quantitative Analyst
It's no secret that the apartment capital market has been white-hot lately. In fact, 2012 sales volume of $65.8 billion came close to the all-time high of $66.2 billion reached in 2005.
Private developers/owners were the most active buyers in 2012, with a combined 49% of all sales (by dollar volume), similar to their share of sales from 2005-2012. Institutional investment managers accounted for 19% of apartment property sales, about what they averaged from 2005-2012; however, public REITs have been more active of late, accounting for about 12% of all apartment sales, up from 9%.
And the story of who's selling is pretty much the same, except that public REITs accounted for far fewer dispositions in 2012 than they did from 2005-2012. In fact, public REITs were the largest type of net buyer in 2012 by a considerable margin, with a volume of $3.5 billion. This trend is no doubt the result of a giant increase in capital offerings for REITs.
The chart below shows the capital offering for REITs on the right axis and trading volume on the left axis. From 2008-2009, public REITs were large net sellers, as their share prices dropped and they sold off assets to maintain their LTVs, accounting for 20%-25% of all apartment sales by dollar volume.
However, as REITs regained favor with investors, it became easier and cheaper for them to raise capital, and the amount of cash they had to put to work grew tremendously. In fact, capital raised in 2012 was a staggering 20 times larger than it was in 2008, though $3.4 billion of last year's total was the result of the Archstone/Equity Residential/Avalon Bay mega-deal.
This means that it's gotten pretty hard to outbid a REIT that has set its sights on buying an apartment property. Dividend yields are only in the threes, so it's okay for a REIT to pay a cap rate that's in the fours. It also means that REITs are doing a lot of development. After subtracting $3.5 billion in net buying and the Archstone buyout from total capital raised, REITs are spending as much as $3 billion on building their own properties, which is not surprising when they can build to a 6% cap (or higher).
How long other investors will be competing with REITs depends on where public apartment REIT pricing is headed. Over the past three years the stock prices for REITs have had a compound annual growth rate of 28%, compared to 13% for the S&P 500. Is this perhaps a sector bubble, or just a bounce back from the recession?
If investors do fall out of love with public apartment REITs, capital offerings will decrease dramatically and the door will open wider for everyone else, especially those who want the higher-quality assets that REITs have traditionally favored. Mark Hickey is a quantitative analyst with CoStar Group in Boston.
New York State REALTOR® March/April 2013 Digital Issue
The most recent Federal Reserve “Beige Book” report showed modest or moderate growth in economic activity with the national commercial real estate market showing mixed results across its 12 districts. Nationally, it found commercial real estate to be “a little weaker than residential real estate” with reports on sales and leasing of non-residential real estate being “mostly positive– described as modest on average.” Its national findings included the following: “The Boston District reported a drop in leasing beyond normal seasonal trends; contacts cited fiscal cliff uncertainty as a factor. Minneapolis and Kansas City reported increased demand and tightening commercial real estate markets. Philadelphia, St. Louis, and Dallas all reported more modest increases in nonresidential real estate activity.
Nonresidential construction is weaker than residential, with only slight to modest growth. The Boston District reported that demand for commercial real estate loans appears to be softening and that the pipeline for new construction projects has diminished significantly since the last report. Dallas reported that construction was expected to pick up in the commercial real estate sector in 2013.”
In the New York District, office markets were relatively stable in the final months of 2012, according to the report. It further stated:“A commercial real estate contact reports that the recovery from Sandy in Lower Manhattan has been slow, as a number of buildings in the fl ood zone remained out of service at year end. More broadly, leasing and sales activity across Manhattan were sluggish in November, but picked up in December. Vacancy rates have been steady, while asking rents have edged up, led by brisk gains in Midtown South. Strong demand from the new media and advertising sectors and some pickup from legal services have off set weak demand from the financial sector. Elsewhere in the region, vacancy rates were little changed in the fourth quarter, though asking rents fell noticeably in northern New Jersey.”
The Federal Reserve “Beige Book” report is available online at federalreserve.gov
April 19, 2013
New NY Bridge surveying crews to conduct multiple operations
Surveying work for the New NY Bridge Project will continue during the week of April 22 as engineering crews conduct more design surveys at various locations in Rockland and Westchester in the vicinity of the project, including the Westchester Haul Road location on New York State Thruway property in Tarrytown.
Installation of construction monitoring devices is planned at several locations this week. These devices, which monitor vibration, noise, and air quality, will be in place for the duration of the project to record construction activity impacts.
Preconstruction surveys of properties located near the construction will begin next week. These operations will be conducted by engineering teams and will involve photographing the exterior and interior of structures. Tappan Zee Constructors is coordinating with the property owners for access.
Preconstruction geotechnical investigations will continue as small barge-based drilling equipment will work at various locations throughout the project footprint in the Hudson River. The crews are conducting preconstruction geotechnical surveys to determine soil conditions where future piles will be installed for the new span. Noise levels from the equipment will be at a minimum. The river-based operations will run continuously 24 hours a day Monday through Friday and possibly Saturday.
Limited test-boring operations will continue on land under the existing bridge and just to the north at the proposed bridge locations. These operations are being conducted on Thruway property and will not affect traffic in any way. The work is scheduled to be conducted between the hours of 7 am and 5 pm Monday through Friday.
There are no land-based boring operations scheduled for the Rockland area for the week of April 22.
April 17, 2013
With the return of institutional investors and lenders to the commercial real estate
arena, there are signs that high net worth investors are also beginning to return.
Firms catering to investors desiring the tax deferral benefits of 1031 exchanges coupled with the advantages of fractional ownership have quadrupled their offerings of Delaware Statutory Trust (DST) co-ownership opportunities.
DSTs have been gaining in popularity for a number of reasons including the ability to secure financing more easily and attract more investors with lower minimum investment threshold amounts. A Delaware Statutory Trust is a separate legal entity in which each owner has a “beneficial interest” in the DST and is treated as owning an undivided fractional interest in the property. However, unlike tenant-in-common arrangements, the investors are treated as one group and not separate owners, thus easing financing and property transfer arrangements.
The amount of money to be raised for commercial real estate-related Regulation D DST offerings filed with the U.S. Securities & Exchange Commission year to date totals more than $136 million in 11 such offerings. That compares to about $43 million in five offerings for the same period last year.
Federal securities laws limit "Regulation D" securities to what are known as "accredited investors." The SEC defines the term accredited investor a director, executive officer, or general partner of the company selling the securities or a person who has individual net worth that exceeds $1 million or with annual income exceeding $200,000.
Capital Square Realty Advisors LLC just this week completed its first Reg D DST investment offering that will own Riverwood Corporate Center, a Class A, 112,000-square-foot office building
in the Milwaukee suburb of Pewaukee, WI. The $6.54 million offering was fully subscribed by investors. The property was purchased in December 2012.
“Riverwood Corporate Center is a mission critical, institutional quality building that is 100% leased by ProHealth Care Inc., a regional health care provider highly rated by both Moody’s and Standard & Poor’s, on a long-term, triple net basis,” said Louis Rogers, founder and CEO of Capital Square. “In searching for replacement properties for our investors, we look for attributes such as these, with the goal of providing high quality investments with the potential for meaningful returns.”
“Riverwood is the first of what we expect to be many DST programs launched by Capital Square Realty Advisors and fully subscribed by our investors,” said Rogers. “There is significant and growing demand for high quality investment programs, particularly among aging baby boomers seeking to defer capital gains taxes while continuing to benefit from the income derived from professionally managed commercial real estate programs.”
Also this week, Greg Genovese, a 25-year commercial real estate and securities industry veteran, launched US Global Realty Capital LLC (USG), a full service real estate investment, advisory, and distribution company specializing in real estate securities and investment funds.
USG has agreed to a strategic alliance with Dallas-based Capview Partners, an exclusive advisor and manager to institutions and private high net worth individuals with a focus on acquiring single-tenant, net leased retail properties throughout the United States. Jointly, the companies will launch co-branded investment programs structured as DSTs.
“Our belief is that DSTs focused on small- to medium-sized retail properties, net leased to high-credit quality tenants with the most cost effective structure, represent a newer and improved investment methodology than other current opportunities,” said Genovese. “We believe this can be accomplished by developing a DST structure with the lowest cost structure possible and investing in properties with low ongoing expense requirements. If you add to this, high-credit quality tenants on long term leases and safe property financing you can see why I believe we have something new and dynamic for today’s conservative investor.”
Westfair Communication April 1, 2013
United Natural Foods Inc., a Providence, R.I..-based distributor of natural, organic and specialty foods, has committed to build a new 525,000-square-foot warehouse and distribution facility in the town of Montgomery in Orange County, investing more than $55 million and creating more than 360 new jobs.
This is UNFI’s first distribution center in New York. Construction is slated for completion fall 2014. The company owns seven major food companies in the U.S. and Canada – including UNFI Canada and Albert’s Organics – and maintains 13 distribution centers across both countries.
“This is great news for New York and great news for Orange County,” Gov. Andrew Cuomo said in a statement. He called his administration’s focus on attracting business “laser-like” and added, “Today’s announcement is proof-positive that this message has been received.”
“UNFI is pleased to partner with New York state and the Town of Montgomery to expand our operations here in the Northeast,” said Sean Griffin, UNFI’s group president. “We feel Montgomery is the optimal location for us to better service our customers and increase our operational efficiencies while reducing our costs and emissions. We look forward to growing together with this great community.”
Located near I-84, the new facility should allow UNFI to improve its distribution efficiencies and service to the metro New York and Long Island markets, “while alleviating capacity issues in the company’s existing northeast facilities” in Pennsylvania and Massachusetts.
Maureen Halahan, president and CEO of the Orange County Partnership, said, “This exciting announcement is a credit to UNFI and the work of the elected officials, permitting bodies and developers of Orange County. The county’s team worked quickly and efficiently to conduct its due-diligence and facilitate a great opportunity for all parties involved.”
Laurence Gottleib, president & CEO, Hudson Valley Economic Development Corp., said, “This latest win for Orange County is a direct reflection of the county’s dynamic leadership working as a team with local, regional and state economic developers to attract new companies and jobs to the region. HVEDC is proud to be a partner in this fantastic win for Orange County, and we look forward to continuing this win streak well into the future.”
Empire State Development, the state’s economic development agency, is providing the company with $3.6 million in tax credits through the Excelsior Jobs Program.