One of the best parts of being a professor at NYU is getting to mentor graduate and undergraduate students seeking to enter or move up in the world of institutional and commercial real estate. When a student sits down in my office, I almost always start with the same question, “what do you want to do?” For some, the answer comes quick and easy with a high degree of certainty and confidence while others respond back with some form of “I don’t know, that’s why I’m here.” Regardless of how the student responds, I will engage them in a discussion to figure out what their Personal Highest & Best Use (HBU) is or what it may become.
This is Part 2 of a multi-part series on the Top Trends and Market Opportunities for the 2020s. See Part 1 here, which explains the project.
Amazon just cancelled its plans to co-locate an “HQ2” in Long Island City, Queens; a decision that has set off a firestorm of debate and politically fueled anger at those who championed its demise. I am personally disappointed for all New Yorkers, it would have been a great catalyst for growth and change in some of the most “left behind” parts of metro New York. However, as a real estate economist, I feel somewhat vindicated as I did not think Amazon would ever choose a site within a major coastal metro area like New York City. The entire search process, as well as broad sweeping trends, always made believe the best choice would be a Secondary City or a semi-SubUrban area near a major metro. In fact, see this article on GlobeSt.com I published in late 2017 where I specifically call out Detroit (a Secondary City) and Newark (a form of a sub-Urban/Secondary City) as logical choices. Further, I casually suggest locations like New York City and San Francisco would be off the table as they have the same issues as Seattle (technically a Secondary City). Thus, I feel Amazon’s final decisions of Arlington (a SubUrban location) for its now sole HQ2 and Nashville (a Secondary City) for the smaller hub are fully in line with my analyses and predictions for future growth in the United States.
While many are writing about their expectations or goals or thoughts on 2019, I am stuck looking ahead to 2020, or really the decade that will be defined as the 2020s. Too much thought is put into forecasting near term expectations, and not nearly enough time and energy is devoted to thinking about the long horizon. Thus, while other economists and market commentators focus on 2019, I will be discussing my expectations of trends and opportunities for the upcoming decade. Over the next few months, I will release a series of articles focusing on my top ten trends and market opportunities for the 2020s. While focused on the real estate investment and development industries, they are broadly applicable and valuable to most industries and markets worldwide. Before I dive deep into the specific trends and each’s corresponding opportunity, I will summarize my philosophy and underlying belief about the world:
The world keeps getting better and better, yet we think it is falling apart!
As the ten year anniversary of the bankruptcy of Lehman Brothers approaches, I find myself asking, what have we learned in these interesting ten years? The week of September 15, 2008 was incredibly significant for the economic history of the world, it was when the reality of the depth of the financial crisis that spurred the Great Recession became undeniable and universally evident. It was also personally very significant; it was the week that I realized I had made the best decision to date in my professional life; that was to leave real estate investment banking to pursue a doctorate in finance full-time. Read More
If you are New York focused, then Hong Kong might as well be the other side of the world. Still, it feels just a connected to NYC as any other city in the world, and just as reachable (with the help of a 16 hour nonstop flight!). When I am asked about real estate prices in the United States, and specifically New York, I am always drawn to Hong Kong for a sanity check. By comparison, Hong Kong is crazy more expensive than New York for just about every asset type from individual apartments to investment grade retail and office buildings. This is nothing new, Hong Kong is severely land constrained (they are seriously contemplating building into the sides of mountains for affordable housing!) and highly populated.
Take the Risk or Lose the Chance was my theme for 2017! This past year, I was presented with a tremendous opportunity that involved moving over a thousand miles and leaving what had been a source of stability for many years. The opportunity involved a major step-up in my academic career as well as access to a whole new network for creative, research, and business endeavors. Of course, making moves requires taking on risks that could otherwise be avoided; but as they say, one can’t steal second while keeping a foot on first! These opportunities do not just come randomly or that often, thus If I turned it down, it may never come back. In short, either I would take the risk, or lose the chance. I took the risk!
Good morning America! I’m guessing you are either deep in terror or in the throws of celebration right now since this fun election season is finally over (BTW, read to the end for some insight into what happened on election night….). Either way, you need a vacation! May I recommend Lake Placid, Florida in Highlands County?
Congrats to the Chicago Cubs winning the World Series! I’m not a big Cubs fan, but they are one of my few favorite MLB team I will root for since my father and I went to many games at Wrigley Field when I was younger. Now for what this post is really about, photographing Chicago.
In March of 2015, I visited the 9/11 Memorial at the World Trade Center site in NYC. I had not visited the area for many years, and it was not what I expected. The area felt more “touristy” than a place of tragedy. Still, there was no way to miss the magnitude of the location. I captured this photo of a single white rose set on the names of victims with the World Financial Center (now called Brookfield Place). I do not know anything more about this rose other than it was left alone and purposely placed. It did not move despite windy conditions. I would say it was the perfect symbol of peace and remembrance.
After a perfect 0-12 season, the UCF Knights have made an infinite improvement by winning their home opener against South Carolina State 38-0! The real game for UCF this season is winning an invitation to join the Big XII. Joining a major conference not only means a lot for the athletic program, but the university as a whole. For some amazing reason, even academic reputation is influenced (insert SEC joke here). So if you are a Knight, say a little prayer that the Big XII comes to its senses and makes us the offer.