Philly Execs Optimistic About '16
We don't have a crystal ball, but we do have real estate execs willing to offer their expert opinions about the Philadelphia market in 2016. We asked one question:
Are you optimistic or not, and why? (Is that two questions?) Most of the replies came down on the side of optimism.
Company: Equus Capital Partners
Outlook for '16: “With homeownership levels at a 50-year low, it’s hard not to remain optimistic heading into 2016. Millennials get a lot of attention, but it’s the Baby Boomers who will increasingly drive demand as they continue to embrace the convenience of renting. We’ve only begun to see the first wave of this huge generation, particularly for newly built communities.” (Greg's lacing up the skates with Flyers legend Brian Propp.)
Company: Southern Land Co
Position: SVP of development
Outlook for '16: "We're optimistic about Philadelphia overall. We believe there will be a continued desire for vibrant, convenient, urban-living options, particularly among the Millennials and empty nesters. City Center will continue to see a strong demand for both rental and for-sale residential properties."
Position: VP, director of research - Philadelphia
Outlook for '16: "Continued economic growth is expected throughout 2016, fueling ongoing demand for office space. At the submarket level, we're seeing strong rent growth and declining vacancy in the CBD as well as our core suburban submarkets. New, top-of-market deliveries will test the market, but with limited options for trophy space, we anticipate these will be absorbed within a reasonable amount of time."
Company: The Harman Group
Outlook for '16: "I'm optimistic about the commercial real estate market in 2016, particularly on the corporate side. Technology and changes in the corporate work environment are creating demand for new and different buildings. That's generating projects from the modernization of older buildings to the construction of new, creatively different headquarters for corporate users."
Outlook for '16: "CAPREIT remains highly optimistic about the Philly region due to a number of factors: strong job growth, healthcare industry expansion through building booms and mergers, as well as the impressive growth of the education and pharmaceutical sectors."
Position: VP of corporate strategies
Outlook for '16: "We’re optimistic about the greater Philadelphia and Southern New Jersey markets in 2016. Job growth remains strong in the meds and eds sectors, while the retention of graduating students is triple what it was a decade ago. Availability of capital should continue, even with rise in interest rates."
Company: SSH Real Estate
Outlook for '16: “Philadelphia has benefited significantly from strong job growth and continued low interest rates, and this momentum will continue in 2016. I’m expecting another year of steady expansion in the commercial real estate market throughout the region.”
Company: Dermody Properties
Position: SVP - capital deployment
Outlook for '16: "I'm optimistic that leasing fundamentals will continue to improve, as there are a significant number of players still looking for space, including several expansions and new tenants to the market. On the sales side I'm a bit cautious, since I expect cap rates to increase as the cost of capital rises and spreads widen between Class-A and Class-B product. Volatility in the global financial markets and uncertainty in the domestic political environment could make 2016 a very interesting year." (Jeff's third from the left.)