Sunday, November 2, 2008

SIOR Conference in Minneapolis Minnesota

So where have I been? Yet another commercial real estate conference. This time was in in Minneapolis, Minnesota for the SIOR World Conference. Why have I attended three commercial real estate conference in three weeks? For you; the customer. The more education and knowledge I can obtain the better for you. Especially in these uncertain times. There is good news to share.

A third expert on the economy has suggested that things are not going to be so bad, for so long after all. Peter Ricchiuti, a Finance Professor from Tulane University, states "IF the majority of people were right, then the majority of people would be rich... and they are not!" Do not follow the herd. Be contrarian. Find the opportunities now. It is an election year so the political candidates and the media make it out to be worse than it really is. The United States has seen ten recessions since World War II. This time, corporate profits have been way up recently. We may see a cash recovery in the first or second quarter of 2009. Exports are growing. From 15% to 20% per year.

Other notable speakers included Keith Ferrazi, author of Never Eat Alone, and Ray Kurzweil, America's revolutionary inventor.

A session of real estate directors agreed that they seek "alliance partnerships" with commercial real estate brokers that understand their strategic goals not just a per transaction broker. They like to work with architects before doing a Site Selection and appreciate when brokers schedule a "Site Tour" with them every year to check up on the status condition of the warehouse/office space. An interview with their local, operations manager also helps. Build these relationships now and along the way. Share information with them. Do not just call them up and say "So, I see your lease is getting ready to expire." Be sure to LISTEN!

Regarding logistics, there is now the concept of "just in case" instead of "just in time" logistics. There is resistance to brokers that claim to be Miami logistic experts. You really better know it, if you are. Although there is a trend of higher taxation and more government control, there is still some hesitation towards Foreign Trade Zones. The real story is that most businesses do not want to allow customs and/or the IRS inside their warehouse on a daily basis. They'd rather pay the taxes then risk being shut down by a government bureaucrat. FTZ's may just not be worth the red tape. As fuel prices are high, rail becomes more favorable. ComReal has a 127,000 sq. ft. Miami warehouse on FEC rail near Miami airport. Ideal for Miami distribution.

Feel free to write me back if you have any comments or questions. Thank you.

Edward Redlich, SIOR