Medical Office Buildings Draw Stronger Interest From Institutional Investors in U.S.

CBRE | December 06, 2019

According to a new report from CBRE, strong fundamentals have increasingly made U.S. medical office real estate a favorite of institutional investors, keeping investment volumes at high levels and capitalization rates low this year in relation to conventional offices. CBRE's report cites several factors behind the continued popularity of medical office, including a steady vacancy rate at 10.3 percent despite a 10-year high in construction completions in the second quarter, a sustained increase in average asking rents since 2013, and strong demand for health-care services due to an aging population and other demographic trends. As a result, transaction volume for medical office buildings stands 50 percent higher this year than before the recession, though it has receded from its early-2018 peak. Foreign investors, domestic institutions and real estate investment trusts are steadily getting more active the medical office market. Cap rates - a measure of a property's income as a percentage of its price - for medical offices have pulled even with those of conventional offices after years of registering higher.

Spotlight

Who were the winners and losers in global commercial real estate investment markets during the first half of 2017, and what will the second half bring?

Spotlight

Who were the winners and losers in global commercial real estate investment markets during the first half of 2017, and what will the second half bring?

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REAL ESTATE TECHNOLOGY

Redfin Launches Down Payment Assistance Feature to Help Make Homeownership More Attainable

Redfin | October 10, 2022

Redfin, the technology-powered real estate brokerage, today added down payment assistance information to home listings on its website. Potential homebuyers can now use Redfin to discover down payment assistance programs they may qualify for in order to help make homeownership more affordable. The feature is powered by a partnership with Down Payment Resource, a company helping the housing industry connect homebuyers with more than 2,200 homebuyer assistance programs nationwide. Each eligible for-sale listing page on Redfin in the U.S. now displays the number of down payment assistance programs available in that area. Interested homebuyers can input basic information and immediately receive a tailored list of programs they may qualify for, the amount of assistance potentially available to them, and links to the program pages for more information. “Nearly half of Americans who have never owned a home say that saving money for a down payment is a barrier to homeownership, and many young people in particular feel like they’ll never be able to own a home, Down payment assistance programs can make homeownership more attainable, but information about them is often fragmented and hard to understand. We saw a big opportunity in partnering with Down Payment Resource to raise awareness about these programs to help more people become homeowners.” -Christian Taubman, Redfin’s chief growth officer This information is especially valuable as the national median home price has soared roughly 40% since the pandemic, making saving for a down payment more challenging. Recent Redfin research found that the typical U.S. homebuyer who took out a mortgage in July made a $62,500 down payment, nearly double the median down payment in July 2019, before the pandemic started. Our research shows that one in three declined mortgage applications are denied for reasons that could be addressed with homebuyer assistance, which underscores the critical need to increase awareness about these life-changing programs, Partnering with Redfin is a great way to get information about financial support into more consumers’ hands. With thousands of assistance programs available across the country, many Americans may be able to afford homeownership sooner than they realized,said Rob Chrane, CEO and founder of Down Payment Resource. This launch is part of Redfin’s broader mission to remove barriers to homeownership and make finding a home clear and achievable. Other efforts include: Ongoing donations to nonprofit community partners through Redfin Rise, the company’s philanthropic initiative. This year, Redfin Rise donations have provided housing counseling sessions for 660 families through Clarifi, supported the development of 12 permanently affordable homes through Homestead Community Land Trust, provided $135,000 in closing grants to 45 homebuyers through NHS Chicago, and helped build 226 homes in El Salvador and Mexico with New Story. Maintaining free homebuyer resources, including first-time homebuyer guides in both English and Spanish and homebuying classes taught by expert Redfin agents. Publishing extensive housing market research about affordability and equality issues. About Redfin Redfin is a technology-powered real estate company. We help people find a place to live with brokerage, instant home-buying (iBuying), rentals, lending, title insurance, and renovations services. We sell homes for more money and charge half the fee. We also run the country's #1 real-estate brokerage site. Our home-buying customers see homes first with on-demand tours, and our lending and title services help them close quickly. Customers selling a home can take an instant cash offer from Redfin or have our renovations crew fix up their home to sell for top dollar. Our rentals business empowers millions nationwide to find apartments and houses for rent. Since launching in 2006, we've saved customers more than $1 billion in commissions. We serve more than 100 markets across the U.S. and Canada and employ over 6,000 people. About Down Payment Resource Down Payment Resource (DPR) helps its business partners connect homebuyers to the down payment help they need through its award-winning technology. The company tracks funding status, eligibility rules, benefits, and more for over 2,000 down payment assistance and affordable lending programs. DPR was recognized by Inman News as "Most Innovative New Technology" and the HousingWire Tech100™. DPR licenses its products to Multiple Listing Services, REALTOR® Associations, real estate search sites, lenders, and housing counselors across the country. DPR's subscription based service, Down Payment Connect, helps agents and loan officers match buyers to available programs.

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REAL ESTATE INVESTMENT

Switch Automation Launches Freemium Portfolio Benchmarking to Equip Portfolio Owners to Meet ESG and Net-Zero Goals

Switch | October 13, 2022

Switch Automation, a global technology company for digitizing and decarbonizing buildings, has announced the launch of a freemium energy benchmarking solution for global building portfolios. This move in the industry aims to democratize access to building performance data and accelerate decarbonization of the built environment during a time when building owners and operators are under increased regulatory and shareholder pressure to meet ESG and net-zero goals within tight time frames. Switch Automation’s Portfolio Benchmarking Basics is an interactive portfolio management tool that lets users view energy data to identify underperforming buildings to target energy efficiency improvements. Users can bring in up to 20 utility bills to build a reserve of historical energy data and quickly identify opportunities and threats to target energy reductions and meet ESG and corporate net-zero goals. "The industry is well-aware of the magnitude of impact decarbonizing buildings has, but there are two major challenges – cost and change. Doing things the way they've always been done means some landlords have decided to pay penalties rather than address energy improvements. That means, today there is a higher cost than ever of doing nothing, We understand this hesitation is rooted in low energy costs compared to the upfront costs for overcoming change. That's what we aim to address by opening up access to Switch's energy benchmarking. We can help the building owners and operators meet sustainability goals while also future-proofing their operations and saving them money." - Deb Noller, CEO and Co-Founder of Switch Automation In response to the passing of the U.S. Inflation Reduction Act, Australia's federally mandated NABERS ratings, the introduction of NABERS into the UK, the EU Taxonomy, and various other geographical decarbonization commitments, building owners and operators are increasingly investing in energy efficiency and digital portfolio management to more proactively address building performance. What’s Included in Portfolio Benchmarking Basic: Comprehensive data analysis Benchmarking and sustainability dashboards Infinite utility uploads and calculations "Next step” visualizations Since launching the world’s first cloud-hosted operation platform in 2012, Switch's technology has been deployed across asset portfolios in the United States, Canada, Australia, Singapore, Hong Kong, and South Korea, helping buildings optimize energy efficiency and services and improving occupant comfort and brand equity while reducing operating expenses. Switch drives improvement in Net Operating Income (NOI) while lowering building emissions. Switch has set an ambitious goal to save over 1 million tons of carbon from their clients’ buildings. Switch Automation is launching freemium Portfolio Benchmarking Basics platform at CREtech New York 2022, which brings together the world’s leading community of professionals devoted to technological innovation in the real estate sector. About Switch Switch Automation is a global technology company that helps property owners and facility managers reduce operating costs, improve energy efficiency and deliver exceptional occupant satisfaction. Our comprehensive smart building platform integrates with traditional building systems as well as Internet of Things (IoT) technologies to analyze, automate and control assets in real-time. We serve enterprise customers and partners in a variety of industries including financial services, retail, grocery, commercial real estate and more.

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LAWS AND ETHICS, REAL ESTATE ADVICE

Great Place to Work® Names Kimco Realty® One of the 2022 Best Workplaces in Real Estate™

Kimco Realty | September 09, 2022

Great Place to Work® has honored Kimco Realty® as one of the 2022 Best Workplaces in Real Estate™. This is Kimco’s first time being named to this prestigious list, making its inaugural appearance at number 16 in the ranking. Earning a spot means that Kimco is one of the best real estate companies to work for in the country. The Best Workplaces in Real Estate award is based on survey responses from over 23,000 employees from Great Place to Work-Certified™ companies in the real estate industry. According to the Great Place to Work® 2021 Global Employee Engagement Study, 94% of Kimco’s employees said that the company is a great place to work, as compared to 57% for a typical US company. “Kimco’s culture is truly unique. We are a team that values diversity, collaboration, and innovation all of which are a hallmark of our company’s success, I’d like to thank our talented and dedicated associates who have helped us achieve a leadership position in our industry and make Kimco such a special place to work day in and day out.” -Kimco CEO Conor Flynn The Best Workplaces in Real Estate is highly competitive. Great Place to Work, a global authority on workplace culture, selected the list using data analytics and confidential employee feedback. Companies were only considered if they had been a Great Place to Work-Certified™ organization, a designation that Kimco has received for the last four consecutive years. Great Place to Work is the only company culture award in America that selects winners based on how fairly employees are treated. Companies are assessed on the quality of the employee experience they create, with a focus on ensuring that the experience is great for employees of any race, gender, age, disability status, or role within the organization. These companies have adapted to the challenges of an ever-changing workplace by their commitment to inclusive, high-trust cultures where employees are treated as human beings first and foremost, Congratulations to the Best Workplaces in Real Estate,says Michael C. Bush, CEO of Great Place to Work. About Kimco Realty® Kimco Realty® is a real estate investment trust (REIT) headquartered in Jericho, N.Y. that is North America’s largest publicly traded owner and operator of open-air, grocery-anchored shopping centers, including mixed-use assets. The company’s portfolio is primarily concentrated in the first-ring suburbs of the top major metropolitan markets, including those in high-barrier-to-entry coastal markets and rapidly expanding Sun Belt cities, with a tenant mix focused on essential, necessity-based goods and services that drive multiple shopping trips per week. Kimco Realty is also committed to leadership in environmental, social and governance (ESG) issues and is a recognized industry leader in these areas. Publicly traded on the NYSE since 1991, and included in the S&P 500 Index, the company has specialized in shopping center ownership, management, acquisitions, and value enhancing redevelopment activities for more than 60 years. As of June 30, 2022, the company owned interests in 533 U.S. shopping centers and mixed-use assets comprising 92 million square feet of gross leasable space. About the Best Workplaces in Real Estate™ Great Place to Work selected the Best Workplaces in Real Estate by gathering and analyzing confidential survey responses from over 23,000 employees from Great Place to Work-Certified™ companies in the real estate industry. Company rankings are derived from 60 employee experience questions within the Great Place to Work® Trust Index™ survey. Great Place to Work determines its lists using its proprietary For All™ methodology to evaluate and certify thousands of organizations in America’s largest ongoing annual workforce study, based on over 1 million survey responses and data from companies representing more than 6.1 million employees, this year alone. About Great Place to Work® Great Place to Work® is the global authority on workplace culture. Since 1992, they have surveyed more than 100 million employees worldwide and used those deep insights to define what makes a great workplace: trust. Their employee survey platform empowers leaders with the feedback, real-time reporting and insights they need to make data-driven people decisions. Everything they do is driven by the mission to build a better world by helping every organization become a great place to work For All™.

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