"Beds and Sheds" hedging to be the front runners for investors in 2020

The catchphrase of the moment is proving to hold its weight as we analyze commercial real estate trends leading into the new year. Canada’s Multifamily market is the strongest it’s ever been with rental rates nearing 10-year highs, apartments near 100% occupancy, and volatility remaining low. On the industrial front, demand for fulfillment space continues to reign supreme to satisfy the multiplying growth metrics in e-commerce.

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April, May and June 2019 among slowest months for commercial sales in the past decade

While activity has stayed fairly constant with regard to tenant/purchaser requirements and listings, the deal flow has been slow as most companies continue to have a low risk tolerance in Alberta. Add to this the much anticipated Federal election expected in October of this year, and there has been a mentality of hurry up and wait…until there is a change up federally that is.

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Dissecting urban sprawl and what it means to be a "Compact City"

How do we design livable, workable, and healthy spaces, by limiting unsustainable urban sprawl while concurrently avoiding densification to the detriment of quality of life? These are the most important questions for any City Plan, because while it’s obvious that the outward growth of single family neighbourhoods casts a huge financial toll on all citizens, it’s also obvious that individuals and families are choosing that lifestyle and living situation for a reason.

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Improving Canada's real estate investment and taxation policies - where's our 1031 exchange?

Unless you’ve had the opportunity to be involved with real estate investments in the United States, you may not know what a 1031 exchange is. Also called a like-kind exchange, this is a unique and progressive policy under the IRS that allows allows an investor to sell a property, reinvest the proceeds into a new property, then defer all capital gain taxes until a future date. It improves asset liquidity, increases market transaction volume, and promotes larger capital investment into the market.

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Commercial tax rates continue to rise in Edmonton and Calgary; concurrently, their periphery markets ranked among most entrepreneurial in Canada.

In what appears to be a long, slow road ahead for the Alberta marketplace, it is essential that the City of Edmonton and the City of Calgary find ways to spend smarter, not harder, in order to improve the entrepreneurial mindset in these cities, increase business confidence, and slow the outward migration.

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The Four Commercial Real Estate Investment Strategies

Core, Core Plus, Value Add and Opportunistic are terms used to define the risk and return characteristics of a real estate investment. They range from conservative to aggressive and are defined by both the physical attributes of the property and the amount of debt used to capitalize a project. Have a look at the following videos and sections, where I’ve briefly explained the differences between the four strategies.

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Vocabulary, Jargon, and Colloquialism - Your One-Stop Commercial Real Estate Glossary

Commercial real estate can be like another language at times. As a commercial real estate professional, I sometimes catch myself elaborating on contracts, opportunities and specifications, soon realizing that I’ve gone into uncharted territory with clientele. Obviously, it can be difficult to stop the train and ask what a word means, but as someone who’s learning new words and processes everyday, it’s a fantastic opportunity to add to your lexicon. This week’s post is intended purely as an educational point of reference!

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Could Churchill Manitoba be the light at the end of the tunnel?

As it stands, Alberta’s prospects of delivering oil to tide water are grim, if not non-existent. Following the calamitous finale of the Energy East pipeline, and the mismanagement of the western Trans Mountain Pipeline, it seems that our one-customer energy policy could remain in effect indefinitely.  But what if there was one more option to consider that could present significantly less inter-provincial conflict, potentially reduced cost outlays, plus economic opportunity for a struggling provincial economy.  Would it not be worth investigating?

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The truth about Canada's tanker traffic...and its lack thereof.

With 243,000 kilometres of coastline, Canada boasts the longest coastline in the world. Due to the nature of the sea ice in our northern territories, the majority of the northern coastline is untouched by human intervention and ship traffic. Due to the nature of our politics, the majority of our functional coastline in Eastern and more so, Western Canada, is blocked from viable tanker traffic. The rest of the world is aggressively trading with each other, and we’re being left in the dust.

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Chinese logistics partnerships with Edmonton International Airport could be the key to more direct flights

The recent partnership announcement of Chinese state-owned EHL International Logistics with Edmonton International Airport clearly exhibits the positive outcomes that are starting to be realized after years of forging relationships with Chinese aviation companies. With no direct flights from Edmonton to Asia at the current time, and witnessing these Chinese state-owned companies pledge their Canadian cargo hubs to Edmonton, I’m inclined to believe that the Chinese State sees Edmonton as a positive business environment, with potential for passenger routes to follow.

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Canadian Lodging Industry Continues to Show Positive Momentum

This week I wanted to jump back into my ‘Hotelie’ roots and highlight trends of the Canadian Hospitality Industry. Though not discussed as frequently, the lodging industry in Canada makes up a large part of the commercial real estate transaction volume in our country. In fact, 2016 and 2017 saw roughly $4.1 Billion and $3.5 Billion, respectively, in total transaction volume, the highest numbers in over ten years!

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Calgary says yes to Olympic bid... Sorry Edmonton, we're not getting hockey!

On October 4, 2018, the International Olympic Committee invited Calgary (Canada), Milan/Cortina d’Ampezzo (Italy) and Stockholm (Sweden) to become Candidate Cities in the path to host the 2026 Winter Olympic Games. Ironically, there are quite a few similarities between what Calgary was going through in the early 1980’s (during the previous bid), and what Calgary is going through today. However one thing is for certain, the announcement that Calgary had won the bid for the 1988 Winter Olympic Games had the effect of overnight providing an air optimism and confidence back to the City.

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Turning Your Roof Into A Revenue Stream Through Solar Leasing

Around the world, a new stream of relatively passive revenue is benefiting the Landlords of commercial buildings. Read about one method that is mutually symbiotic in benefiting both the environment, and the bottom line, as countries around the world continue to take efforts toward transitioning the consumer’s reliance on energy to new renewable sources.

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Canadian oil and gas production is among the greenest and most environmentally innovative in the world. So why are we not branding it this way?

Canadian oil and gas production has long since become the scapegoat of the modern energy contradiction.  That is, many around the world are demanding a switch to green, renewable energy, calling for a complete elimination of the oil and gas industry, yet the data shows that global fuel usage from oil continues to grow year after year. 

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First place you think of when you hear the word Tech? Could be Canada now!

Month after month, we discuss the effects of automation and advancing technologies on the changing landscape of the commercial real estate industry.  Whether it's the billions of dollars being invested globally into distribution chain robotics and drones for logistics networks, or the rise of beacon technology emanating from our smart phones to create enhanced and tailored retail experiences, technology is changing the way we do business, and in fact, how we experience life as a whole. 

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Over 15 transactions ranging from $10 Million - $63 Million have occurred in Edmonton this year!

For many years, Edmonton has been considered by neighbouring metropolitan cities, a second-tier destination, a "working-class" town.  When individuals and businesses from around the world think of Canada, they always first spout out - Toronto, Vancouver, Montreal, Calgary...  And while we have primarily been a blue-collar City, this does not mean that our business owners are shy of investment capital, nor does it mean that our City lacks innovation, diversity and opportunity.

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What's Coming Our Way: Future Trends Affecting the Commercial Real Estate Sectors

The commercial real estate industry continues to transform, creating new opportunities and challenges for users and service providers alike. These trends are affecting the commercial real estate sectors individually (Industrial, Retail, Office, Hospitality and Multi-Family), as well as the industry as a whole. Being knowledgeable and able to adapt to these changes will create opportunities instead of threats for those [so lucky] to be involved.

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The Edmonton International Airport has Attracted 1.6 Million Square Feet of Commercial Development... Since Last Year!

If you've driven past or to the Edmonton International Airport (EIA) lately, you'll likely have noticed that it is a changing and growing landscape.  The EIA innovatively came up with a Master Plan for the future of the land surrounding the Airport that involved making available much of the Airport's under-utilized land for the purpose of commercial development by private companies.

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