Original Article: March 7, 2019 GlobeSt.com
What a year 2018 was. And all signs point to another year of bounty for commercial real estate.
We experienced stomach-churning market volatility, tariff wars, several terrifying natural disasters and, at the end of the year, the beginning of a government shutdown. Unfortunately for us, all of these factors are still in place, poised to mark 2019 in the same way.
The commercial real estate industry was not immune to these forces last year. The market volatility began to spook some investors about assets of any type and the tariffs played a role in rising construction costs as well, adding expenses for retailers. The government shutdown—the longest in history at 35 days—has ended as of this writing, but President Trump indicated he could shut down the government again if an agreement is not reached about border security.
And yet, even as the industry felt the effects of these events, it still managed to make remarkable gains. Last year some $733 billion in investment sales worldwide closed, up 4% from 2017 and the best annual performance in a decade, according to JLL. In the US, commercial property sales volumes were 11% higher during the first three quarters of 2018 than during the same period in 2017, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association.
Like last year, the industry was able to face down several headwinds and expectations for 2019 call for another round of healthy deals and originations.