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Six Must Reads for the CRE Industry Today (Jan. 5, 2021)

Smaller metropolitan markets in the middle of the U.S. are seeing the strongest rise in home prices, reports CNBC. Nordstrom looks like one of the department store chains that will survive the pandemic, according to MarketWatch. These are among today’s must reads from around the commercial real estate industry.

  1. Home Prices Are Rising Faster in the Middle of the U.S. as COVID Drives People Away from Coasts “Home prices are rising across the nation, but the Covid pandemic is turning the usual geographical trends on their heads. Home values have historically risen most sharply in large cities on the coasts, where supply is leaner and demand is stronger. That is no longer the case. Smaller metropolitan markets like Pittsburgh, Cleveland, Cincinnati, Indianapolis, Kansas City, Boise, Idaho, Austin, Texas, and Memphis.” (CNBC)
  2. Late 2020 Deals Sign of Things to Come in Maryland’s Life Science’s Sector “A joint venture between GlenLine Investments and Singerman Real Estate has acquired 5640 Fishers Lane and 12441 Parklawn Drive in Rockville, Md., two lab buildings totaling 74,500 square feet that the venture plans to transform into Class A life sciences space.” (Commercial Observer)
  3. How Walmart Plans to Take Over Healthcare “Walmart, the world’s largest retailer, wants to be your doctor, too. In September 2019 the company known for its “Everyday Low Prices” launched Walmart Health, a primary care clinic, at a store in Dallas, Georgia. The doctor-run clinic, the first of its kind for the big box retailer, offers services like X-rays, annual checkups and dental exams.” (CNBC)
  4. Americold Realty Trust Closes $1.7B Acquisition “Americold Realty Trust, the world’s largest publicly traded REIT focused on temperature-controlled warehouses, has completed its $1.74 billion acquisition of Agro Merchants Group from funds managed by Oaktree Capital Management LP. The deal, announced in October, added 46 facilities totaling 236 million cubic feet in 10 countries to its growing global cold storage portfolio.” (Commercial Property Executive)
  5. Nordstrom Looks Like a Department Store Survivor. Its Stock Still Has Room to Run. “Department stores are the dinosaurs of retail—and there can be little doubt that they face extinction. The big stores were in decline long before Covid-19 arrived on the scene, and the pandemic has accelerated their skid toward demise. Department-store sales have been shrinking—they fell 23% to $9 billion in November from $11.1 billion a year earlier—and they don’t look like they’ll stop sliding anytime soon. Already, old names like Lord & Taylor have filed for bankruptcy and disappeared.” (MarketWatch)
  6. Tenants of Bankrupt NYC Apartments Seek Cash to Fix Rat Problem “Tenants in bankrupt Manhattan apartment buildings affiliated with Emerald Equity Group LLC are demanding that housing code violations including rat infestations and bed bugs be immediately addressed as part of a Chapter 11 agreement. Residents are seeking an order compelling the debtor, 203 W 107th Street LLC, to use available funds to address outstanding New York City Housing Court orders and make any urgent repairs to the buildings, according to court papers.” (Bloomberg)
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