July 9 - July 19, 2013

House Advances Federal Real Estate Savings Bill
7.10.2013 | Washington Business Journal | Daniel J. Sernovitz The House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure voted unanimously Wednesday to pass a bill aimed at lowering the federal government's real estate costs. That includes provisions placing greater oversight on the General Services Administration and requiring other federal agencies to justify any request to lease more space than they currently occupy. The bill's swift passage through the committee could be a strong indication of its chances of building larger bipartisan support in the House, and potentially the Senate. Lawmakers on both sides of the political aisle, however, have sought for years to pass similar legislation and it is still too early to say whether this one will actually make it through. Click here for more...

What Is Real Estate? The Answer Could Be Costly
7.10.2013 | CoStar Group | Mark Heschmeyer Under pressure to reconsider some tax loopholes, the IRS -- and Congress -- have both launched recent attempts to define or literally, re-define -- what exactly constitutes real estate assets for purposes of qualifying as a real estate investment trust (REIT) under the tax code. The results of those efforts could affirm or undo a host of tax advantages for existing REITS and block the efforts of several companies seeking to reorganize as REITs. In the past few weeks, CoStar has reported that the Internal Revenue Service has informed a handful of potential REITS (Iron Mountain Inc., Equinix Inc. Lamar Advertising Co. and CBS Outdoor Americas) that the Treasury agency has formed a new internal working group to study the current legal standards it uses to define "real estate" for purposes of firms qualifying as a REIT, and what changes or refinements, if any, should be made to those legal standards. Click here for more...

How the Latest Print Technology Enables a More Sustainable Office
7.10.2013 | Environmental Leader | Steve Pond It is estimated that an average employee consumes about ten thousand pages of paper a year in printing. Implementing the latest print technology can have a positive impact on your office’s carbon footprint. By reducing paper usage and using more environmentally sustainable resources, you can help to combat deforestation and global warming. Printing output can be analyzed at department, team or individual level, allowing departments to allocate costs and improve efficiency. By reducing unnecessary output and wastage, firms can reduce their paper requirements and save energy, leading to carbon improvements. In order to maximize environmental benefits, firms must also effectively combine digital technology with traditional print systems. This includes leveraging display screens, overhead projectors and smartphones to reduce overall paper requirements. Hand-outs at meetings should be replaced by tablets and smartphones for viewing and editing relevant documentation quickly and efficiently. Cloud technology should also be used to reduce the requirement of printed information, with businesses documentation now available remotely, rather than limited to internal servers. Click here for more...

D.C. Suburbs Near Federal Employment Supremacy
7.11.2013 | Washington Business Journal | Michael Neilbauer The nation’s capital remains the center of the federal employment universe, but the D.C. suburbs may be one or two federal agency moves away from stealing that title. Federal government employment fell 12.9 percent nationwide and 6.8 percent in D.C. between 1990 and 2013. But it rose 26.7 percent during that same period in the Washington-area suburbs. The District’s June economic and revenue trends report, from the Office of the Chief Financial Officer, highlights federal employment trends over the last two decades. While government jobs have declined overall, the 'burbs have boomed. Click here for more...

US is Healing... If the Fed Doesn't Screw it Up
7.13.2013 | CNBC | Jeff Cox Longtime economic bear David Rosenberg thinks the U.S. economy is on the road to recovery, but there's a catch: Federal Reserve missteps could yet spoil the journey. The turn by the Gluskin Sheff economist and strategist is remarkable—three years ago he said the U.S. was caught in a 1930s-style Depression and investors were kidding themselves by buying stocks at any sign of good news. Now, employment trends have taken a noticeably positive turn and consumer credit is showing that recovery is happening at the household level, Rosenberg said in a missive earlier this week.

It is the Fed's continued fear of another economic relapse, and the potential for ensuing policy mistakes, that concerns Rosenberg. Click here for more...

D.C. Planners Drop Proposal to End Minimum Parking Rule for Developers
7.14.2013 | Washington Post | Mike Debonis Bowing to vocal opposition, District planners have backed off a controversial proposal to eliminate long-standing requirements that developers in some areas include parking spaces in their projects. The decision not to wholly abandon “parking minimums” in outlying neighborhoods served by Metrorail and high-frequency bus lines comes as planners prepare to submit a wholesale rewrite of the city’s zoning code for approval by the Zoning Commission and shortly after opponents repeated their concerns at a council hearing. The decision to back off the elimination of parking minimums vexed a group of activists who view it as a cornerstone of efforts to make the city denser and more transit-oriented. Some leading skeptics of the original proposal said it was too soon to tell if the revised parking-minimum measures would prove acceptable. Click here for more...

Fed Beige Book: Economy Growing at 'Modest to Moderate Pace'
7.17.2013 | Reuters via CNBC The U.S. economy continued to grow at a modest to moderate pace in June and early July, with manufacturing expanding in most areas of the country, the Federal Reserve said on Wednesday. In its Beige Book report of anecdotal information on business activity collected from contacts nationwide, the U.S. central bank said factories in many of the 12 districts reported increases in new orders, shipments or production. The Fed also struck an upbeat note on the housing market, noting that residential real estate and construction increased at a moderate to strong pace in all districts. That in turn is helping to prop up manufacturing. The Fed also said consumer spending and auto sales increased, which should help to underpin the recovery in the third quarter. While hiring held steady or increased at a measured pace in most districts, there was a reluctance to hire permanent or full time workers it said. Click here for more...

CoStar Repeat Sale Analysis: Strong CRE Demand Powers Expanding Commercial Property Price Recovery
7.17.2013 | CoStar Group | Randyl Drummer Pricing of commercial real estate strengthened across the board, with pricing gains accelerating in May following a seasonal soft patch in the early months of 2013, reflecting solid market fundamentals, broadening investment activity and healthy demand for virtually all types of commercial properties, according to the latest CoStar Commercial Repeat Sale Indices (CCRSI) release. The value-weighted index, which is heavily influenced by larger transactions and typically tracks with high quality core real estate prices, has now increased by 41% from its most recent trough in 2010. The equal-weighted index, which is influenced by smaller, more numerous opportunistic transactions, has improved by 10% from its bottom in 2011. A significant trend in recent months has been the growing investor demand for smaller and lower-quality commercial property assets. Prices in this General Commercial segment are now rising in tandem with those in investment grade category. Click here for more... Click here for a printable version MacKenzie is committed to helping firms capture a competitive advantage through commercial real estate. We have a proven approach, a skilled, multidisciplined team, and the in-depth local market knowledge necessary to succeed in Maryland's business environment. MacKenzie is a full-service commercial real estate company offering services in leasing and sales, construction, development, GIS and research, property management, and debt and equity placement. For more information, please contact: Meghan 410.494.4846 Email Meghan Now G. Roy

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This newsletter is a summary of articles related to commercial real estate news in the Baltimore/Washington market, collected from local publications as noted above. Should you require specific information, please refer to the publication source or call one of our professionals at 410.821.8585. All information furnished regarding property for sale, rent, exchange or financing is from sources deemed reliable. No representation is made as to the accuracy thereof and all such information is submitted subject to errors, omissions, or changes in conditions, prior sale, lease or withdrawal without notice. All information should be verified to the satisfaction of the person relying thereon.

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