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Sandy has been more than a three-day process for JLL Mid-Atlantic property management head Meredith Roark. Her team started prepping last week (property managers, the Scouts, and Britney Spears' personal assistant follow the same motto: Be prepared).
Meredith Roark on Oct. 30, 2012
Meredith told us yesterday her group has been busy making sure generators are fueled up and supplies like boards, flashlights, and sandbags are stocked up across JLL's 20M SF industrial, office, and retail portfolio. She says the managers prepped for 65 to 100 mph winds because you just can't predict what's coming your way. Their properties fared well: plenty of debris and downed trees but only one power loss (an industrial building in Jessup). Meredith says the properties are fully operational today, and she expects tenants to return in full force. Next comes clean-up and thorough property checks. That means checking the roof drains, each windowsill, and walking all floors and stairwells. At her home office (aptly named above) wind rocked the place so much that water was sloshing in the toilet (somewhere in Australia, someone's toilet was sloshing in the other direction).

Rich Greco and Kathy Allgier on Oct. 31, 2012
CBRE's Kathy Allgier (snapped this morning with Rich Greco, who orchestrated the Sandy response for CBRE's 40M SF management portfolio of office, industrial and retail properties in Baltimore and DC), tells us her firm activated its National Emergency Operations Center and began prepping for the storm last Tuesday. That included tying loose items down, stocking up, securing building service vendors in advance (most were proactively accepting properties to waiting lists first come, first serve), and conducting twice-daily calls with the onsite staff. Kathy says none of the buildings experienced significant power outages, major damage, or injury. Tuesday felt like a Saturday, she says, with 25% of the tenants in the office and many of them wearing jeans.

US public REIT properties in Sandy's path
US public REITs own 9,000 properties in Sandy's path, according to SNL Financial (credit for this heat map of the concentration goes to SNL's Jesse Bellavance). That includes all of Washington Real Estate Investment Trust's 71 properties and First Potomac's 62, 96% of Mack-Cali's 292, 93% of Brandywine's 250, and 93% of Home Properties' 118. First Potomac announced minimal damage to its properties and only a few without power. Home Properties estimates clean-up and repairs at $1M to $1.5M (insurance will help quite a bit). LaSalle Hotel Properties similarly reports no damage but is trying to recoup lost income via insurance.

Davie Berke on Oct. 29, 2012, Manhattan
JLL Manhattan retail head Davie Berke (snapped Monday showing space in NYC—the show must go on) tells us the retailers affected most by Sandy aren't the ones that sell what we needed (grocery and hardware stores and pharmacies). Rather, it's the ones peddling what we'd rather have been doing than squeezing our dogs into Thundershirts: Halloween pop-up stores. Davie says the Eastern Seaboard's seasonal stores just lost their biggest sales days. (What will they do with all those extra wigs?) While grocery and drug stores typically see a bump in sales before a big storm, post-storm sales usually lag, creating net negative results.