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10 Must Reads for the CRE Industry Today (July 9, 2019)

To keep up with online grocery shopping and prepared meals, the U.S. will need 100 million sq. ft. of new cold storage warehouse space over the next five years, reports the Los Angeles Times. A California startup launches a marketplace where investors can buy stakes as low as 10 percent in single-family rental homes, according to the Wall Street Journal. These are among today's must reads from around the commercial real estate industry.

  1. All That Online Grocery Shopping Is Causing a Cold Storage Shortage “Consumers, particularly younger buyers, are turning more and more to online grocery shopping and prepared meal services, which means more refrigerated warehouses are needed to keep that stuff cold. To keep pace, the country will need 100 million square feet of new cold storage warehouse space over the next five years, according to a report by real estate brokerage CBRE.” (Los Angeles Times)
  2. This Startup Wants to Sell You a Slice of a Rental Home “Roofstock, which operates a website where investors buy and sell occupied rental properties without disturbing tenants, has launched a marketplace where investors can buy stakes as low as 10% in single-family rental homes.” (Wall Street Journal, subscription required)
  3. More New Yorkers Embrace Solar Power “In an effort to reduce their carbon footprints, homeowners across New York City are increasingly turning to solar energy, with Brooklyn brownstone owners hurrying to catch up with their counterparts in Queens and Staten Island.” (The New York Times)
  4. What to Watch in Fed Chairman’s Congressional Testimony “With bond markets betting that the Federal Reserve is likely to cut interest rates at its July 30-31 meeting, Chairman Jerome Powell has a prime opportunity to either reset or ratify those expectations during two days of testimony on Capitol Hill starting Wednesday.” (Wall Street Journal, subscription required)
  5. Kohl’s Is Betting on Amazon Returns to Drive Sales “Kohl’s said on Monday that it was now accepting Amazon returns at its more than 1,100 stores after running a pilot program in 100 locations. The retailer, which will pack, label and ship the returns for free, expects the program to benefit millions of shoppers along with bringing more people into their stores, Michelle Gass, the company’s chief executive, said in a statement.” (The New York Times)
  6. Going Mobile: What Can Southwest Airlines's Success Teach Housing? “As the housing industry in the US continues to wrestle with the issue of affordability in nearly every market in the country, there are some parallels to be drawn with today’s housing market and lessons to be learned from the airline industry in the 1970s when Southwest’s first flights took off.” (Forbes)
  7. Brick and Mortar Is Thriving in Financial Institutions' Increasingly Digital World “Bank branches seem increasingly obsolete as people handle more of their finances on their phone. Since 2012 more than 5,000 branches have disappeared nationally, and last year the number of ATMs declined for the first time since the machines were introduced in 1969.” (Crain’s New York Business)
  8. High Operating Costs, A Top Concern in Seniors Housing “Investors and developers may be planning to increase capital allocation and exposure to senior housing over the next 12 months, but the emerging asset class poses some significant challenges. According to a recent survey from CBRE, investors are concerned about the high operating costs of senior housing, particularly in active and lifestyle facilities.” (
  9. The New Workplace: A Millennial Designer’s Perspective “MKDA’s Emma Tessler on the open office, generational differences and the coolest new products at this year’s NeoCon.” (Commercial Property Executive)
  10. Houston's Apartment Market Seeing Demand Surge “Rents are inching up and builders are starting new developments amid strengthening demand for Houston-area apartments, according to several new reports.” (Houston Chronicle)
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