Mike Lin, Retail Specialist at Progressive Real Estate Partners
Today’s QuantumListing Hot Spot is the Inland Empire. Located in Southern California, the Inland Empire, or “The IE” to locals, is comprised of Riverside and San Bernardino Counties, just east of Los Angeles County. The Inland Empire is home to 4.5 million people, making it the 16th most populous Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA), ahead of regions such as Denver, Minneapolis, and San Diego.
In recent years, commercial real estate in the IE has grown steadily. Although the IE was hit in the Great Recession, the market has recovered strongly, and is near or has surpassed its pre-recession levels in many key commercial real estate measures, such as asking rents per square foot, vacancy rates, cap rates, and investment sales volume.
But why invest in the Inland Empire instead of its more glamorous neighbors, Los Angeles (LA) and Orange County (OC)? Here are several reasons why investors are looking to the IE to park their money:
- Higher investment returns (cap rates) than LA and OC: A similar retail investment can be a half to a full percentage point higher cap rate in the Inland Empire versus LA or OC. For example, it is not unusual for an LA-area fast food restaurant building to sell for under a 4% cap rate, while a similar investment in the IE may sell for closer to a 4.5% cap. Bottom line, in most cases your investment dollar goes farther in the IE.
- Stable, fast-growing population: As LA and OC get built out and the cost of housing continues to rise, many people are choosing to move to the Inland Empire to find more affordable housing, bigger yards, and a more relaxed lifestyle. The California Department of Finance projects that the area will see a population increase of 1.3 million people over the next 20 years.
- Huge growth in industrial construction: The IE currently has over 20 million square feet of industrial space under construction, the most of any region in the country. This construction will bring more people and jobs to the area. The shopping network QVC recently opened a one million square foot facility in the city of Ontario that will bring 1,000 new jobs to the area. Amazon recently announced construction of a distribution center in San Bernardino, which will be their fifth distribution center in the Inland Empire and their seventh in California.
- Strong job growth in multiple sectors: Since 2011, the local workforce in the IE has been growing at the rate of 3% per year. This is twice the national average and one of the fastest growth rates in California. Aside from the logistics and warehousing jobs mentioned above, the IE is seeing job growth in the healthcare, government, education, and construction industries.
The Inland Empire may not be as well-known as its Southern California neighbors, but it provides a great opportunity for real estate investors to receive strong returns in a dynamic, growing market.
Mike Lin is a Retail Specialist at Progressive Real Estate Partners (PREP). The firm specializes in the leasing and sale of retail real estate in the Inland Empire. You can reach Mike at 909.230.4500 regarding any of your real estate needs or to learn more about PREP visit www.progressiverep.com. You can also stay up to date on the latest IE news, trends and market data by following PREP on Linkedin, Twitter and Facebook.
Today’s QuantumListing Hot Spot is Philadelphia PA. I’ve always liked Philadelphia. My father went to the Wharton School at University of Pennsylvania on the GI Bill, and he always talked fondly of his experiences there. I went on a class trip to see the historic sites when I was a kid. Long before Lin-Manuel Miranda wrote Hamilton, probably before he was even born, I went with my family to see the show 1776 on Broadway. That show was among my favorites for a long time. And, Ten years ago I got to visit Philadelphia with my family and see the national historic sites.
In the early 1990’s I brokered the sale of the former Gimbels at The Gallery at Market East in Philadelphia to Vornado. Aetna, the insurance company that held the mortgage had gotten it back from the borrower. I was at the ICSC National Deal Making show in Miami when that was still a thing, and the representatives of Aetna came into my booth because they saw I had a graphics board with 620 Avenue of the Americas, on which I was consulting with my cousin, the architect Ken Narva of Planned Expansion Group (now StreetWorks). 620 Avenue of the Americas was the former Cooper Siegel Department Store, the first store with escalators in Manhattan. It was smack dab in the Ladies’ Mile, an historic shopping area that had fallen out of favor as a retail area. Bed Bath & Beyond loved the large retail floor plate with wide column spacing and high ceilings and decided to take a chance on being a pioneer in bringing back retail to this district. Coincidentally, Leonard Cohen from Bed Bath & Beyond was the chief cheerleader for this project, and he was a classmate and fraternity brother of my father at University of Pennsylvania.
Tishman Speyer was the developer of 620 Avenue of the Americas, and so they were the first company Ken (also a Penn grad, by the way) and I showed the property to. They passed, so we ended up bringing it to Vornado. A friend that I had met through the ICSC, Todd Bassen, was working at Vornado at the time on its acquisition team. Todd arranged for us to meet with Steve Roth, chairman of Vornado. We pitched the building, he seemed interested, and said he would swing by it that afternoon on his way to visit his son at Princeton. The next day we had an offer from Vornado, and the deal closed shortly thereafter. I still get a feeling of pride whenever I’m in Philadelphia and walk past that building.
Scroll through the frame below to see our users’ listings in the greater Philadelphia market.
Today’s QuantumListing Hot Spot is Springfield MA. Located at the junction of Routes 91 and 90 (the Massachusetts Turnpike) and just above Connecticut, it seems that many road trips lead through Springfield. I love driving by the Naismath Basketball Hall of Fame, with its iconic silver spherical building. And every time I drive by, I say I’m going to stop there, but have not yet. Back in the ’90s I spent some time working on the restructuring of one of the malls, so I made frequent day trips for a while. Continue reading “QuantumListing Hot Spot: Springfield MA”
Today’s QuantumListing Hot Spot is St. Louis, MO. In my brokerage business, Perlmutter Properties, I’ve done a lot of work over the years with the Retail Services Group of what is now Cushman & Wakefield (it has been Colliers Turley Martin & Tucker, Cassidy Turley, and DTZ, but always the same group). I’ve really enjoyed working with this exceptional group of men and women over the years. Continue reading “QuantumListing Hot Spot: St. Louis, MO”
Today’s QuantumListing Hot Spot is Albany, NY. Considering I’ve lived in New York state since 1986, it’s surprising how little time I’ve spent in Albany. It’s mostly a drive by on the New York State Thruway. Fortunately, anytime I need information about real estate in our state’s capital, I can call on my friends at Vanguard Fine or Howard Carr.
Click to the next page and scroll through the frame to see our Albany area listings. And of course, if you want to become a Premium Member of QuantumListing and add your own listings, you can still get a free Trial Premium Membership for a limited time.
Continue reading “QuantumListing Hot Spot: Albany, NY”