FIRST THINGS FIRST
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|Yesterday's sale of The Exchange to Merritt Properties from Riderwood Associates in Towson is the only arms-length traditional office investment sale in excess of $10M in Baltimore this year. That fact could get you down, but we're a building-half-full kind of optimist. (This one is 90% full, by the way.)|
|CBRE's Bo Cashman repped the seller. Sources tell us it fell in the $15M-$20M range; other outlets reported $16M, but we heard that's a bit light. Merritt invested significant equity in the transaction. The 88k SF building houses 39 tenants, more reminiscent of an apartment building (those of you sleeping in your office have an excuse). Bo told us in a normalized market there would be about $400M to $500M in volume in metro office sales; last year, there were only a handful of large transactions. He chalks it up to an increase in short-term leases and a high-vacancy rate. Bo predicts properties that offer diversification for investors will do the best next year.|