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Real Estate Roundup 7.13.20

Real Estate Roundup:

  • Public pension funds invested in malls, apartments, and offices over the last decade in search of higher returns. Now they are grappling with how much those real-estate investments are worth in a world transformed by Covid-19… “If you talk to anyone who says that they know exactly where the market is going and that they have all of the answers, they really don’t know,” said Chicago Teachers’ investment chief Angela Miller-May. Real-estate holdings have climbed to 6.1% of U.S. public-pension portfolios in the first quarter from 3.8% in 2007. (WSJ)

Suburbs are having a moment

  • Moves from New York City to Connecticut have more than doubled from the prior year since the city’s shutdown began in March… No state’s real-estate market struggled more to rebuild home value after the financial crisis. By the end of last year, typical home values were stuck at about 20% below their pre-crisis peak, compared with a nationwide climb of nearly 15%. The newfound demand for Connecticut’s suburbs has potential for the entire state, but particularly for Fairfield County, which still puts residents within commuting reach of New York… Commercial real-estate experts say New York City-based businesses have been scouting suburban offices, including in Connecticut, as they contemplate bringing at least some workers back to cubicles. Citigroup confirmed it is contemplating leasing office space in Connecticut, among other areas in the greater New York region. (WSJ)

Post Covid-19

  • After more than four months of coronavirus lockdown, four city zoos and the New York Aquarium are preparing to open to the public on July 24 at limited capacity. When they reopen, New York State will require that those facilities limit their employees and visitors to no more than one-third of their maximum occupancy. (NYTimes)
  • Nationwide hotel occupancy stood at 45.6 percent for the week ending July 4, down from 46.2 percent the week prior. Despite what had been a steady climb, last week’s rate was still 30 percent below the same period in 2019, and STR predicts demand won’t recover to pre-pandemic levels until 2023… New York City’s occupancy rate dropped to 40.1, compared to from 42.4 percent the week before. (STR+TRD)


  • Thor Equities has taken women’s coworking firm The Wing to court after it claims the company missed nearly $270,000 in rent for its location at 25 West 39th Street. (CO)

Other news 

  • American Homes 4 Rent and Blackstone’s Invitation Homes bet on suburban houses in the the depths of the last housing crisis… Nine years later the land grab is paying off as an economic downturn, the rising unaffordability of homeownership, and a global pandemic push a new generation to suburban home rentals. Their instructions were strict. Nothing older than 20 years or so. Nothing too rural. Nothing smaller than three bedrooms and two baths. Nothing without a garage. Nothing that cost less than $100,000. Nothing that would rent for less than $1,000 a month. Decent schools were a must. (WSJ)
  • Two commercial landlords sued the city Friday over laws hastily passed to protect retail tenants during the pandemic. The federal lawsuit challenges a package of bills that Mayor Bill de Blasio signed in May, including one that temporarily bars landlords from going after the personal assets of restaurant and store owners who owe rent. The lawsuit alleges that Mayor Bill de Blasio’s actions deny landlords’ First Amendment rights and violate the contract clause of the Constitution. (TRD)

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