Market Overview

Demand for Commercial Real Estate Causing Price Pressure


The increased demand for commercial real estate is causing the price of assets to overtake their value in certain property sectors, according to the latest Real Estate Research Corporation’s (RERC) quarterly Real Estate Report.


“The relationship between the value versus the price of commercial real estate is precariously balanced,” according to Ken Riggs, president and CEO of RERC, a national evaluation and research organization.


Increased demand, particularly for high-quality assets, is being fueled by the perception of real estate as a safe haven in the current uncertain investment environment, according to RERC.


RERC’s investment survey of large institutional and regional investors showed that certain property types, particularly apartment and retail properties, were seen to be fully priced or even overpriced in some areas.


“We are seeing pricing in most property sectors increase enough such that investors worry that a market correction is looming or that a bubble may be developing,” Riggs said.


At the same time, RERC’s survey noted that prices in cities including Boston, New York, Washington, D.C., Austin, Dallas, Houston, San Francisco, and Seattle were already slightly higher than the value of commercial real estate.


RERC’s value versus price ratings, which range from 1 to 10, with 5 representing a balance between price and value, declined for most property types during the second quarter.


The value versus price rating for commercial real estate overall declined to 5.4 from 5.5 in the first quarter.


The apartment sector rating declined to 4.6 from 5.0 in the first quarter, while the office sector rating fell to 4.9 from 5.5 in the same period. The retail sector rating dropped to 4.9 from 5.3 in the first quarter.


The industrial sector value versus price rating remained above the 5.0 level, but eased slightly to 5.7 in the second quarter from 5.8 the previous quarter.


Meanwhile, the hotel sector value rating rose to 5.7 in the second quarter from 5.5 the quarter before.


“When looking at the fundamentals, the hotel sector value is very positive,” said Patrick D’Sa, director at Situs, a commercial real estate and loan advisory services firm that owns RERC.


D’Sa noted that continued low interest rates, coupled with strong market fundamentals, have pushed capitalization rates in the hotel sector back down to pre-crisis levels. At the same time, he explained, there has been a surge in available debt financing from the investment community, as seen by the growth in commercial mortgage backed securities (CMBS) issuance volume.


The increased demand in the commercial real estate space shows investors confidence into the sector.  In the real estate technology segment, digital media companies like Realbiz Media Group, Inc. (OTCQB: RBIZ)are changing the marketing landscape by providing real estate professionals a new avenue to promote themselves and their business.  

RealBiz Media’s, for example, aims to bestow agents control over how they want to run marketing campaigns for their listings. The portal has been launched at a time when the only means for agents to capture leads is to buy them from listing companies and websites.

“’s mission is to both empower the real estate agentand to connect the homeowner and homebuyer directly with the agent in a personalized and meaningful relationship without interference from large, impersonal, third party lead generation sites,” Realbiz Media President and Chief Revenue Officer Steve Marques noted in a statement.

“Homebuyers are able to create personalized video collections of potential homes to be set-up for review and sharing. Agents can quickly bring their listings to life via RealBiz’s rich video conversion tools, and market their properties directly to homeowners and homebuyers in a personalized, customized, entertaining, and engaging format no matter where they are," Marques said of the platform.

RealBiz is a publicly traded company. Its stocks closed at $0.13, up by 8.25 percent from its previous close.



The preceding article is from one of our external contributors. It does not represent the opinion of Benzinga and has not been edited.


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