JLL Represents The USPS In Selling Some Of Its Oldest Properties
As the United States Postal Service sits at the center of heated political debate, it has also been seeking to raise capital through real estate deals.
The USPS is looking to sell some of its older buildings, at least one of which is on the National Register of Historic Places, Commercial Observer reports. JLL has represented the independent public agency, which receives no federal tax dollars to fund its operations, in all sale and lease transactions since 2017.
JLL currently has 334 USPS properties listed for lease or sale, CO reports. Some USPS-owned properties are put up for auction by the U.S. General Services Administration, which handles real estate for federal government headquarters buildings, whereas JLL brokers sales are on the open market. JLL also represents the USPS in its dealings as a tenant, which accounts for over 23,000 active leases.
The USPS' annual report to Congress in 2019 detailed that the agency owns over 8,300 properties across the country totaling 193M SF, making it one of the largest real estate owners in the U.S., CO reports. Raising money through the sale of some of those properties has yet to make a dent in the massive budget deficit the agency has run since a controversial 2006 law forced it to fund its employees' pensions for 75 years into the future.
Another idea for boosting revenue that has been floated behind the scenes is a deal with JPMorgan Chase that would place Chase ATMs and other banking services within post offices, the New York Post reports. Representatives for JPMorgan called any talks about a deal with USPS preliminary, with no immediate plans for advancing any negotiations.
Some of the most venerable former Post Office buildings still owned by the USPS have already been leased to private companies long-term, such as the Old Post Office building in Washington, D.C., now the Trump International Hotel and a magnet for conflict-of-interest controversies involving President Donald Trump and The Trump Organization.
JLL took over as the sole broker for USPS real estate deals from CBRE in 2017 after the agency's Inspector General raised concerns about potential conflicts of interest and unreliable property appraisals with CBRE, CO reports.