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10 Must Reads for the CRE Industry Today (September 14, 2018)

Hurricane Florence could cause as much as $60 billion in damage, CNBC reports. A Forbes contributor details lessons learned from his firm’s worst real estate deal. These are among today’s top must reads from around the commercial real estate industry.

  1. Florence Is Expected to Rank Among the Top 10 Costliest Hurricanes Ever “The National Hurricane Center lowered Hurricane Florence to Category 2 on Thursday, but the catastrophic combination of heavy rain and a severe storm surge are making the storm more dangerous than ever.” (CNBC)
  2. Five Lessons From a Real Estate Joint Venture Gone Bad “Our worst real estate deal, a campus apartment complex and parking structure, looked like a sure winner on paper, but resulted in the smallest profit in our company’s 11-year history. Yet we learned significant lessons about risk management in joint ventures that changed the way we think about how to invest in real estate — lessons I believe can benefit other property investors.” (Forbes)
  3. Price of a Whole Foods Basket of Groceries Has Barely Budged Since Amazon Took Over “Even with the discounts offered to Inc.’s Prime members, the cost of a $400-plus broad basket of items purchased at Amazon-owned Whole Foods Market only yields $1.50 in savings over prices one year ago, Gordon Haskett Research Advisors found.” (MarketWatch)
  4. Henri Bendel to Close After 123 Years “Henri Bendel, the specialty retailer known for its signature brown-and-white bags, is shutting down after more than a century in business.” (Wall Street Journal, subscription required)
  5. Sears Posts Smallest Same-Store Sales Decline in More Than 3 YearsSears Holdings on Thursday reported the smallest decline in quarterly same-store sales in more than three years. Sales at Sears and Kmart stores open for at least 12 months were down 3.9 percent during the second quarter, compared with a decline of 11.9 percent in the prior period.” (CNBC)
  6. Fewer Households in Hurricane Florence’s Path Have Flood Insurance Than in 2013 “Fewer homeowners in North and South Carolina own flood insurance than five years ago, signaling many won’t have access to ready cash if they need to rebuild after Hurricane Florence.” (Wall Street Journal, subscription required)
  7. Bay Area Real Estate Gains Highest in Country Since Recession “If you bought a Bay Area home in 2012, pat yourself on the back. You almost certainly doubled your investment, just by sleeping in your own bed.” (The Mercury News)
  8. Topshop Seeks Exit From Pricey Fifth Avenue Store “As the British brand’s brick-and-mortar strategy falters, it seeks to join a growing list of apparel companies that aimed to cut back on costly locations.” (Crain’s New York Business)
  9. Are You Running Afoul of GDPR? “Because this onerous European legislation is far reaching and does have an impact on US commercial real estate.” (
  10. Where Are All the Millennials Going? “With today’s young adults choosing city life at a much-higher rate than in previous generations, which neighborhoods in the country are attracting the highest concentrations of millennials?” (The Real Deal)
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