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Homebuilders Look To Dead Shopping Centers, Old Dealerships For Potential Building Sites

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Homebuilders, construction, construction industry construction workers

Residential developers on the hunt for new building sites are finding value in former shopping center lots. As homebuilders seek to build in more walkable, urban markets that millennial homebuyers are drawn to, closed shopping centers are a solid find.

Toll Brothers is eyeing former car dealerships, out-of-business malls and office buildings to compensate for the lot and labor shortage, Construction Dive reports. That was its strategy when the firm partnered with Starwood Capital Group to build 100 luxury condos and a hotel in Brooklyn.

Labor shortages are impacting the construction industry’s ability to deliver projects on time. The construction industry lost over 40% of its workers between 2006 and 2011, and today six in 10 construction workers who lost work during the financial crisis have moved into other professions. Housing starts slowed in May for the third straight month, as construction slowed to levels experienced in October 2015. Despite the weak performance, Bloomberg reports Americans remain optimistic about the market.