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Coronavirus and Real Estate Uncertainity


Mar-21-2020



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By Daniel J. Sernovitz – Staff Reporter, Washington Business Journal, Mar 20, 2020

If you can't see the long view, how can you act on it.

That's the question commerial real estate experts across Greater Washington are grappling with these days as the physical nature of office space has been unpended by sociall distancing in the age of the coronavirus.

Eric West, founding principal of D.C.-based West, Lane & Schlager Realty Advisors, tries to answer the question from a tenant's perspective...

“It’s comparable, on at least some level, to the mentality that set in immediately after the 9/11 terror attacks and the 2008 financial crisis, said Eric West, a principal at West, Lane & Schlager Realty Advisors.  But on only some levels.  While 9/11 was a single sequence of events, the coronavirus has been spreading, locally and globally, for some time now.  Still, in their wake, uncertainty set in.  And that isn’t a good thing for the commercial real estate industry.

The tenant market is an outwardly focused business, and these days, everyone is focused inwardly, on their businesses and on their family, West said.  Just signing a lease is a commitment to a long-range plan, and if that plan for the immediate future is thrown out the window, you can’t make a commitment to any kind of long-term plan.  You can’t sign a lease.  You can’t even think about real estate," said West.

 To read the entire article, download pdf here...WBJ Article

 

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