PAINTER —PETER HARRIS, Bestselling author of Commercial Real Estate Investing for Dummies Sound, advice on the A-to-Z of commercial real estate Apartment complexes, office buildings, self-storage, long-term care centers for the right investor, commercial real estate ventures can be profitable—and fun! If you are serious about investing, The Encyclopedia of Commercial Real Estate Advice is an invaluable guide. 10 techniques for recession-proofing your property Guidelines for getting started in commercial real estate and choosing low-risk properties 11 ways property managers will try to steal from you, and how to stop them 136 time and money-saving tips for investors Trade secrets for getting the best deals on your loans—revealed! How-to steps for raising money, repositioning properties to dramatical increase the value, and more From Absorption to Zoning, The Encyclopedia of Commercial Real Estate Advice covers everything a serious investor needs to make real-world deals and decisions that lead to profit. TERRY PAINTER is the founder of Apartment Loan Store and Business Loan Store—mortgage-banking firms that have closed over four billion dollar in commercial loans nationally. He is a member of the Oregon Bankers Association, the Mortgage Bankers Association, and Forbes Real Estate Council, where he is a contributing writer. Terry lives in Portland, Oregon and the Dominican Republic. BUSINESS & ECONOMICS Real Estate/General 49.00 USA/ 59.00 CAN Cover Design and Illustration: Wiley Subscribe to our free Business eNewsletter at wiley.com/enewsletters Visit wiley.com/business THE ENCYCLOPEDIA OF This book explains the process of buying, financing, managing, and selling commercial properties of all shapes and sizes. You’ll also find over 300 encyclopedia entries that define and provide practical investing advice, including: THE ENCYCLOPEDIA OF Commercial Real Estate Advice “The Encyclopedia of Commercial Real Estate Advice is a serious, bottom-line book about making and modeling sound business decisions around buying and selling a commercial property. It covers raising money from investors, due diligence (most important in my opinion), developing from the ground up, repositioning a property to its highest and best use (my personal favorite), leasing and management, and of course, financing. It’s probably the most useful advanced real estate book I have ever read.” Commercial Real Estate Advice How to Add Value When Buying, Selling, Repositioning, Developing, Financing, and Managing TERRY PAINTER
k Trim Size: 7.375in x 9.25in Painter629115 ftoc.tex V1 - 07/05/2020 8:35pm Page vii Contents Foreword xxi Introduction xxiii This Book Will Save You Time and Money How to Use This Book xxv xxv PART I Smart Strategies for Buying k CHAPTER 1 Who Are You When Buying a Commercial Property? Seven Top Character Traits of Experienced Commercial Real Estate Investors Four Phases of the Commercial Real Estate Market Cycle and the Best Time to Buy The Lowest-Risk Property Types to Choose Ten Risk-Lowering Action Steps Four Levels of Risk Based on Property Condition, Income, Location, and Occupancy CHAPTER 2 Seven Smart Strategies for Adding Value When Buying 1. Have Your Down Payment, Professional Team, and Financing Together Before You Go Shopping 2. Use Leverage Responsibly 3. Define Your Property Search Objectives 4. Four 15-Minute Methods of Determining Property Value 5. Choose a Property That Can Be Recession-Proofed 3 4 11 13 16 18 21 21 22 25 28 30 vii k k
k Trim Size: 7.375in x 9.25in Painter629115 viii ftoc.tex V1 - 07/05/2020 8:35pm Page viii CONTENTS 6. Choose the Best Team Members 7. Winning the Numbers Game—Making and Negotiating Offers 33 36 Encyclopedia Topic A Buying 43 PART II Smart Strategies for Buyer Due Diligence CHAPTER 3 Outstanding Due Diligence for Buyers Twelve Due Diligence Mistakes That Buyers Should Avoid Is This Property “Who” You Thought It Was? Encyclopedia Topic B Due Diligence 81 82 91 97 PART III Smart Strategies for Raising Investors k CHAPTER 4 Raising Money and Creating Investor Partnerships Buying Commercial Real Estate Without Money or Experience Eight Countermeasures for Not Having Enough Money and Experience Using Other People’s Money to Get Rich When Buying Commercial Property How the Inexperienced Deal Manager/Sponsor Can Get Started What Percentage of Ownership Should You Get for Putting the Deal Together? Why Non-Recourse Financing Is the Key to Raising Investors Nine Pitfalls to Avoid in Investor Partnerships Forming a Real Estate Syndication Encyclopedia Topic C Raising Investor Partners Encyclopedia Topic D Property Ownership Entity 123 123 124 129 131 137 138 139 141 145 161 PART IV Smart Strategies for Sellers CHAPTER 5 Hold, Cash-Out Reﬁnance, Sale, or 1031 Exchange? Cash-Out Refinancing to Purchase More Investment Property k 171 173 k
k Trim Size: 7.375in x 9.25in Painter629115 ftoc.tex V1 - 07/05/2020 Page ix ix Contents Is This a Good Time to Sell Your Commercial Property? You’ve Got to Love the 1031 Tax-Deferred Exchange Putting the Cart Before the Horse: The 1031 Reverse Exchange CHAPTER 6 Adding Value in the Selling Process Determining the Maximum Sales Price Power Brokers Are Highl y Skilled at Pushing Up the Sales Price Twelve Mistakes to Avoid When Selling Your Commercial Property Value-Adding Before Selling Why You Should Do a For Sale by Owner Why You Shouldn’t Do a For Sale by Owner Benefits of Working with an Experienced Commercial Real Estate Broker Should You Owner-Carry? Alternative to Owner-Carry: The Master Lease Purchase Encyclopedia Topic E Selling k 8:35pm 175 178 183 187 187 190 192 196 199 199 200 201 202 205 k PART V Smart Strategies for Repositioning CHAPTER 7 Unlocking Hidden Wealth with Repositioning Repositioning a 246-Unit Multifamily Property in Oklahoma City Repositioning a 38-Unit Multifamily Property in Garland, Texas Manage Your Reposition Project According to a Plan Three Types of Repositioning Tips for Choosing the Best Property for Repositioning The Biggest Bang for the Buck Encyclopedia Topic F Repositioning 221 222 224 226 226 227 229 239 PART VI Smart Strategies for Developing CHAPTER 8 Why Developers Are at the Top of the Food Chain What Are Developers Made Of? How Much Do Commercial Developers Make? k 257 257 259
k Trim Size: 7.375in x 9.25in Painter629115 x ftoc.tex V1 - 07/05/2020 8:35pm Page x CONTENTS How Do Commercial Building Developers Earn Money? How Do Commercial Land Developers Make Money? Traits of the Best Commercial Real Estate Developers What Is the Typical Day Like for a Commercial Developer? Can You Become a Developer without Experience? Fourteen Mistakes to Avoid When Developing Commercial Property CHAPTER 9 50 Steps of Developing and That Isn’t All of Them The 15 Professionals Commercial Developers Team Up With The Commercial Development Process—Five Stages Encyclopedia Topic G Development 260 261 261 265 266 269 275 277 280 295 PART VII Smart Strategies for Financing k CHAPTER 10 Trade Secrets for Getting the Best Rate, Loan Fees, and Terms The Truth About How Commercial Lenders Set Rates, Terms, and Loan Fees How Much Can Lenders Bend? Advice from an Insider on Negotiating with Lenders Nine Insider Tips for Getting the Best Loan Terms A Seven-Step, Cutting-Edge Recipe for Getting Lenders to Compete Why You Should Join the Non-Recourse Loan Club CHAPTER 11 Taking Charge of Your Commercial Loan Why You Should Take a Hands-On Approach The Top Six Risks Commercial Lenders Dread The Seven Preapprovals in Commercial Lending The Truth About Commercial Appraisals and Why They Sometimes Kill Deals Why You Should Use a Commercial Loan Broker Ten Mitigations That Can Help You Quality for Your Commercial Loan k 319 320 322 322 330 333 336 339 340 342 343 349 351 352 k
k Trim Size: 7.375in x 9.25in Painter629115 ftoc.tex V1 - 07/05/2020 8:35pm Page xi xi Contents Vetting Your Lender and/or Commercial Loan Broker 354 Encyclopedia Topic H Financing Encyclopedia Topic I Commercial Loan Programs 357 391 PART VIII Smart Strategies for Managing and Leasing CHAPTER 12 Smart Strategies for Managing and Leasing Self-Management Versus Professional Management Is a Larger or Smaller Management Company Better? Managing Your Property Manager Eleven Ways Property Managers Can Rip You Off (and I’m Sure There Are More) Twelve Screening Questions to Ask When Choosing a Property Management Company Leasing Basics k Encyclopedia Topic J Managing and Leasing 407 407 411 412 415 419 421 427 Appendix A 447 Acknowledgments 501 About the Author 503 Index 505 k k
k Trim Size: 7.375in x 9.25in Painter629115 ftoc.tex V1 - 07/05/2020 8:35pm Page xiii Encyclopedia Topics ENCYCLOPEDIA TOPIC A Buying k Actual Versus Potential/Pro Forma Numbers Affordable and Subsidized Housing Auctions, Buying At Break-Even Ratio Building Class Buyer’s List of Property Objectives Buyer’s Pro Forma Cap/Capitalization Rate (Buyer’s Perspective) Cash on Cash Return (CCR) Commercial Properties’ Four Income Streams Contingency Clauses in the Sales Contract (Buyer’s Perspective) Cost per Unit Analysis Deferred Maintenance (Buyer’s Perspective) Double Closing Earnest Money: How Much and Is It Refundable? (Buyer’s Perspective) 43 43 43 45 46 47 48 49 50 51 52 53 55 55 56 56 Effective Gross Income Gross Rent Multiplier (GRM) Healthcare Property Industrial Property Internal Rate of Return (IRR) Letter of Intent/Interest (LOI) to Purchase Master-Metered Property Mixed-Use Property Mobile Home Park Multifamily Property Nondisclosure Agreement (NDA) Office Property Preapproval Letter/Letter of Interest for Financing Proof of Funds Letter Purchase and Sale Agreement (PSA) (Buyer’s Perspective) Real Estate Owned (REO) Properties for Sale Rent Concessions (Buyer’s Perspective) Rent Control Replacement Cost 57 57 58 58 59 60 62 62 63 64 65 66 67 67 67 68 69 70 71 xiii k k
k Trim Size: 7.375in x 9.25in xiv Painter629115 8:35pm Page xiv ENCYCLOPEDIA TOPICS Retail Property Return on Investment (ROI) After Value-Adding Self-Storage Property Senior Housing Single-Purpose/ Single-Tenant Property Student Housing 71 73 74 ENCYCLOPEDIA TOPIC B Due Diligence k ftoc.tex V1 - 07/05/2020 Buyer’s or Seller’s Market Cap/Capitalization Rate Capital Improvement/Replacement Reserves/Cap-X Collections Verification Report Commercial Property Purchase Evaluation Spreadsheet Commercial Property Quick Analysis Calculator Crime Rate Analysis Due Diligence Checklist Environmental Concerns Estoppel Certificate or Letter Estoppel and Lease Review Checklists Expense Checklist Expenses, Variable and Fixed Historical Financials Loss to Lease Ratio 75 76 76 97 Market and Competition Analysis Millage Property Tax Rate Mold Assessment Report Net Operating Income (NOI) Parking Ratio Preliminary Title Report Property Condition Checklist Radon Gas Report Rent Comparable Report Seismic Report/Seismic Risk Assessment Stabilized Occupancy Survey, ALTA Tenant Rollover Risk Title and Survey Objection Letter Trailing 12-Month Report (T-12) Transfer Tax Vacancy Rate: Physical, Economic, and Market Wood-Destroying Insect Report 97 97 98 99 100 101 101 101 103 103 104 105 106 107 108 k 109 110 111 111 112 112 114 115 115 115 115 116 116 117 118 118 118 119 k
k Trim Size: 7.375in x 9.25in Painter629115 ftoc.tex V1 - 07/05/2020 ENCYCLOPEDIA TOPIC C Raising Investor Partners k 145 145 145 146 147 147 148 149 149 150 150 151 Peer-to-Peer Funding for Gap Equity Raising Preferred Equity Preferred Return Private Investors Private Placement Memorandum (PPM) Real Estate Investment Company and Branding Securities Attorney Self-Directed IRA Investment in Commercial Property Sophisticated Investor Sponsor, of a Commercial Real Estate Investment Sponsor Promote Syndication Tax Shelter for Investors Waterfall ENCYCLOPEDIA TOPIC D Property Ownership Entity C Corporation Delaware LLC Delaware Statutory Trust (DST) General Partnership (GP) Individual Ownership/Sole Proprietorship Joint Venture Agreement Page xv xv Encyclopedia Topics Accredited Investor Cash Calls Crowdfunding for Raising Equity Equity Multiple Executive Summary for Raising Investors Exit Strategy Expenses Incurred by the Sponsor Joint Venture (JV) Institutional Capital Partner Investor Qualification Form Letter of Intent to Invest Pari Passu (in Commercial Real Estate Partnerships) 8:35pm 151 152 153 154 155 155 156 156 157 157 158 159 159 160 161 161 161 162 163 163 163 k Limited Liability Company (LLC) Limited Partnership (LP) Multiple or Layered Ownership Structure S Corporation Single Asset Ownership Entity Tenants in Common (TIC) 164 166 166 167 167 168 k
k Trim Size: 7.375in x 9.25in xvi Painter629115 8:35pm Page xvi ENCYCLOPEDIA TOPICS ENCYCLOPEDIA TOPIC E Selling k ftoc.tex V1 - 07/05/2020 1031 Exchange Checklist As-Is Clause Broker Cooperation Agreement Cap/Capitalization Rate (Seller’s Perspective) Commercial Real Estate Buyer Types Commissions, Commercial Real Estate Brokers Confidentiality/ Nondisclosure Agreement (NDA), Sellers Contingency Clauses in Sales Contract (Seller’s Perspective) Depreciation Recapture 205 205 206 Letter of Intent/Interest (LOI) (Seller’s Perspective) Listing Agreements/Contracts Loan Assumption Negotiating Repairs with the Buyer Online and Multiple Listing System (MLS) Marketing Owner’s Title Insurance Policy Private Sale Property Condition Inspection Report Realized Gain Time Is of the Essence Clause 207 207 207 208 209 209 211 ENCYCLOPEDIA TOPIC F Repositioning Absorption Adaptive Reuse (Repurposing) Appreciation, Forced Ballpark Quotes Building Codes and Permits Competition Analysis Constructional Repositioning Checklist Cosmetic Repositioning Checklist Design Drawings Versus Architectural Drawings 212 213 213 214 215 215 215 216 217 217 239 239 Distressed Property Economic Obsolescence Energy Management System (EMS) Functional Obsolescence Master Lease Agreement Nonperforming Mortgage Note Purchasing Operating Budget Pro Forma Operational Repositioning Checklist Raising Rents 239 240 241 241 242 242 243 244 k 244 244 245 245 246 247 247 248 248 k
k Trim Size: 7.375in x 9.25in Painter629115 ftoc.tex V1 - 07/05/2020 249 249 250 251 251 Revitalization Zones/Urban Revitalization Tenant Profile Variance Analysis Water Management/ Conservation Program ENCYCLOPEDIA TOPIC G Development k Absorption Schedule Bid and Award Process Bike Score Brownfield Buildout Build-to-Core Strategy Car Stack Parking Certificate of Occupancy (C of O) Conceptual Design Construction Contract Pitfalls to Avoid Construction Monitoring Cost per Square Foot Cost-Plus Construction Contract Density Development Fee Developer’s Responsibilities Elevation Drawings Energy Star Rating Entitlement Process Furniture, Fixtures, and Equipment (FF&E) Hard Costs Hydrologists Impact Fees Page xvii xvii Encyclopedia Topics Ratio Utility Billing System (RUBS) Rebranding Rehab Construction Contract Repositioning Pro Forma Re-Tenanting Plan for Retail Repositioning 8:35pm 253 253 254 254 295 295 296 296 297 297 297 298 298 298 298 300 300 301 301 302 303 303 303 303 304 304 304 304 k Land Assemblage Land Use Attorney LEED Certification Lump Sum Construction Contract Modular Construction New Urbanism Off-Street-Parking Requirements Opportunity Zones Performance Bond Planned Unit Development (PUD) Predevelopment—20 Steps Preliminary Drawings Pro Forma Rent Roll Punch List, End of Construction Raw Land Development Schematic Design Setbacks Single Room Occupancy (SRO) Site Plan Soft Costs Specifications/Specs Stabilized Value, Newly Constructed Properties 305 305 305 305 306 307 307 307 307 308 308 309 309 309 310 310 311 311 312 312 312 313 k
k Trim Size: 7.375in x 9.25in xviii Painter629115 8:35pm Page xviii ENCYCLOPEDIA TOPICS Subterranean Parking Transit-Oriented Development (TOD) Urban Infill Value Engineering Walk Score Zoning Variance 313 313 314 ENCYCLOPEDIA TOPIC H Financing k ftoc.tex V1 - 07/05/2020 Adjustable/Floating Rate Commercial Mortgage Appraisal (Three Approaches to Commercial Appraisals) Bad-Boy Carve-Outs Blanket Mortgage Bridge Loan Capital Improvement Reserves/ Cap-X Capital Stack Cash-Out Refinancing Closing Cost Checklist (Commercial Loan) Commercial Construction and Bridge Loan Programs Commercial Loan Submission Checklist Completion Guarantee (Construction Loans) Construction Loan Submission Checklist Construction Rollover to Permanent Loan Coterminous Loan Cumulative Loan To Value (CLTV) Debt Service Coverage Ratio (DSCR) Debt Yield 314 315 315 357 Declining Prepayment Penalty Defeasance Prepayment Penalty Earn-Out Provision Environmental Report (Required by Lenders) Equity Participation Loan Estoppel Certificate (Required by Lenders) Executive Loan Summary Fixed-Rate Commercial Mortgages Forbearance Agreement Foreign National Loan Global Ratio Index Interest-Only Mortgage Key Principal Land Acquisition Financing Letter of Interest/Intent (LOI) (Lender) LIBOR (London Inter-Bank Offered Rate) Loan Extension Lockout Prepayment Penalty Market Size Mezzanine Debt Mini-Perm Loan 357 357 358 359 359 360 360 361 362 363 364 364 365 365 366 366 366 367 k 367 368 368 369 369 369 370 372 372 373 373 373 374 374 375 375 376 376 377 377 378 378 k
k Trim Size: 7.375in x 9.25in Painter629115 ftoc.tex V1 - 07/05/2020 k 378 379 379 380 380 380 381 381 381 382 382 383 Second Mortgage/ Subordinate Loan Secondary Market Self-Directed IRA Commercial Loan Springing Lock Box Stated Income Commercial Loan Supplemental Financing Swap Rate Tax and Insurance Escrow/Impound Third-Party Report Underwriting Interest Rate Upfront Fee Wraparound Mortgage Yield Maintenance Prepayment Penalty ENCYCLOPEDIA TOPIC I Commercial Loan Programs Commercial Mortgage-Backed Security (CMBS) Loans Community Banks Credit Unions Crowdfunding Loans Fannie Mae Multifamily Loans Freddie Mac Multifamily Loans Hard Money Bridge and Construction Loans HUD/FHA Multifamily and Healthcare Page xix xix Encyclopedia Topics Multiple Residential Investment Property Loan No Money Down Commercial Loan Non-Recourse Loan Operating Budget Pro Forma Owner-Occupied Commercial Mortgage PACE Financing Poor-Credit Commercial Mortgages Portfolio Loan Private Debt Fund Lender Rate Lock and Rate-Lock Deposit Rehab Loan (Best Programs) Replacement Reserves 8:35pm 384 384 385 385 386 386 386 387 387 387 387 388 388 391 391 392 392 393 394 395 396 396 k Large Commercial Banks Life Companies National Bank Capital Divisions Poor-Credit Secondary Market Loans Private Debt Funds Regional Bank Income Property Divisions SBA for Hospitality, Self-Storage, and Owner-User 398 399 400 400 401 402 402 k
k Trim Size: 7.375in x 9.25in xx Painter629115 8:35pm Page xx ENCYCLOPEDIA TOPICS ENCYCLOPEDIA TOPIC J Managing and Leasing k ftoc.tex V1 - 07/05/2020 Absolute Triple Net Lease Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) Compliance Assignment of Lease Clause Audit Rights for Landlords Audit Rights for Tenants Base Rent Buildout Common Area Maintenance (CAM) Fees Credit/Investment Grade Tenant Creditworthy Tenant Double Net Lease Effective Rent Escalation Clause (Rent) Estoppel Letter (Lease Clause) Eviction Process Expense Stop and Fully Serviced Leases First Right of Refusal Furniture, Fixtures, and Equipment (FF&E) (Commercial Lease) General Vacancy and Credit Loss Go Dark Clause (Lease) Gross/Full Service Lease Lease-Up Fee (Leasing Commission) Letter of Intent (LOI) to Lease Management Duties for Commercial Property Managers 427 427 Modified Net Lease Net Lease Off-Site Management Fees On-Site Management Cost Operating Expense Caps Option Clauses (Leases) Percentage Lease Property Management Contract (Protections for the Property Owner) Property Management Software Rent Abatement Rent Concessions Rent per Square Foot Request for Proposal (RFP) (Leases) Security Deposits Single Net Lease Sublease Clause (Leases) Subordination, Non-Disturbance, and Attornment Agreement (SNDA) Tenant Allowance (TA)/Tenant Improvement Allowance (TIA) Tenant Improvements (TI)/Leasehold Improvements (LI) Tenant Mix Tenant Relocation Clause Term of Lease Triple Net Lease Turnkey Useable Square Footage Versus Rentable Square Footage 427 427 428 428 428 428 429 429 429 430 430 430 431 431 432 432 432 433 433 433 434 434 435 k 436 437 437 437 437 438 438 439 440 440 441 441 442 442 442 442 443 443 444 444 444 445 445 446 446 k
Trim Size: 7.375in x 9.25in k Painter629115 flast01.tex V1 - 07/05/2020 8:21pm Page xxi Foreword over 20 years, I’ve invested in commercial real estate in nearly every section F orof the United States and have taught thousands of everyday people how to suc- k cessfully invest in large apartment buildings, shopping centers, office buildings, and self-storage facilities, and the list goes on. When I first met Terry Painter in 2004 at my favorite Italian restaurant in San Francisco, my commercial real estate business was experiencing a bit of out-of-control growth. I needed to talk to him about a 140-unit apartment complex we were purchasing in Dallas, Texas. We had just been within days of getting our financing approved and the lender, without warning, backed out. On that day and until today, I still wonder how a guy who’s so intelligent can have such a witty sense of humor. Typically, people as sharp as Terry aren’t very funny. Well, to make a long story short, and humor aside, Terry was the smartest finance guy I ever met. But not just book-smart; Terry had gleaned his wisdom from the most valuable school one could attend—the School of Hard Knocks. He could virtually read through our deal’s financial statements and share with us what the numbers truly meant from not only a rate of return perspective, but a human and emotional perspective. It was at that time that I started learning the importance of closely working with people who were smarter than me. Just to let you know, Terry came to the rescue on that Dallas deal and closed on a loan for us in 38 days with zero issues. Since then, he is the first person we call when a commercial loan is needed—pretty much anywhere in the United States. Some of the best deals our group got involved in were the ones Terry advised us to pass on. Sometimes the greatest value is exiting at the beginning a deal that could be a time bomb. And likewise, many deals that Terry advised us to move forward on were personally life-changing deals for us and many others. Terry was, and has always been, the smartest guy in the room. Period. The Encyclopedia of Commercial Real Estate Advice is a serious bottom-line book about making sound business decisions concerning buying and selling a commercial property, raising money from investors, deal due diligence (most important, in my opinion), developing from the ground up, repositioning a property to its highest and best use (my personal favorite), leasing and management, and, of course, financing. It’s probably the most useful advanced real estate book I’ve ever read. xxi k k
Trim Size: 7.375in x 9.25in k xxii Painter629115 flast01.tex V1 - 07/05/2020 8:21pm Page xxii FOREWORD For Terry to pour his vast real-world knowledge and passion into this book is a true blessing to any reader or student of this great business called commercial real estate. Terry is more than just a great lender, though. His deep and practical command of the commercial lending world is more than just concepts. His advice is from years and years and hundreds of closed transactions all over the United States, helping investors (perhaps just like you!) reach lifetime financial targets and lifestyle goals. To me, and perhaps you, that’s what life is about. My advice to whomever has picked up this book is to get someone who’s smarter than yourself on your team. That person is the author of this phenomenal book. Peter Harris, best-selling author of Commercial Real Estate Investing For Dummies CommercialRealEstateInvestingForDummies.com k k k
Trim Size: 7.375in x 9.25in k Painter629115 flast01.tex V1 - 07/08/2020 4:22pm Page xxiii Introduction If you are reading this book, you are a very lucky person. If you C ongratulations! are already investing in commercial real estate, thinking about it, or working in k this field, you are a member of a very exclusive group. According to the IRS, less than 8% of all Americans who file tax returns get to invest in income property and under 3% own commercial investment real estate. And if you work in this industry like I do (I do commercial mortgages), well, I hope you think it’s fun, as I do, and, might I add, never boring. As an investor in commercial property, you get to wake up in the morning and say to yourself, “What can I do to this property to add value?” Maybe you have found a Class C minus apartment complex in an up-and-coming neighborhood. Yes, get rid of the slow-paying and no-paying renters, and the ones who have rusty bikes and junk on their patios. Then do about 4,500 per unit in cosmetic upgrades and the rents can be raised 100 per month. Just with those ideas you can be on your way to increasing the property value by 20% or more in five years. I know of no other investment opportunity that is designed like commercial real estate—one where you can choose the right property, add value, and be rewarded with a pay raise, increased equity, and amazing tax benefits. Remember when you just had a day job? You only had one source of income—the paycheck. With commercial real estate, you get to have four sources of income: rental income, rental increases, appreciation, and depreciation (I know, how can something appreciate and depreciate at the same time? Only in America.) Oh, but wait! There is actually a fifth one—leveraging your equity tax free into a larger, more profitable property by doing a cash-out refinance or a 1031 tax-deferred exchange. These are covered in detail in Chapter 5. Is commercial real estate a better or safer investment than the stock market? Well, this is really comparing apples with oranges. Commercial real estate is slow moving. It just doesn’t have wild swings from one day to the next like the ones stocks are known for. It is unlikely that you will ever lose 25% of your equity or, for that matter, gain 25% as stocks can over a year—or, even worse, experience a drop of 12% in one week as the Dow did on February 28, 2020, as fears of the COVID-19 crisis impacted the world. xxiii k k
Trim Size: 7.375in x 9.25in k xxiv k Painter629115 flast01.tex V1 - 07/08/2020 4:22pm Page xxiv INTRODUCTION Commercial property investment certainly has its risks, which are explained in detail in Chapter 1. One major risk is choosing a higher-risk property type. Unless you have experience and a nice chunk of cash, you might want to avoid hotels, retail, and office properties. Recessions consistently seem to give these properties heartburn. Oh, and I had better add Class C minus apartment complexes in blue-collar neighborhoods to this list. Boy, do they take a lot of mothering, complete with nagging tenants to be nice to each other and pay the rent. During the Great Recession and the coronavirus recession, these properties had the most slow-paying and no-paying tenants in the multifamily sector due to job loss. Class A, B, and C apartment buildings in good neighborhoods had a very low rate of default. Recessions can actually offer a bonus when buying commercial property. Many of my clients can’t wait for the next one. They have cash put aside to snatch distressed properties at a discount. Many of my experienced clients are careful to recession-proof their properties. Chapter 2 gives you 10 tested methods of doing this. Just one of them, structuring the property so that it can break even at 75% occupancy after paying all the expenses and the mortgage, can make your property bulletproof during a recession. Actually, in my experience the highest risk is taking shortcuts on due diligence when buying, and getting married to a property who is not who you thought it was. To avoid falling into this trap, be sure to read Chapter 3, especially the 11 due diligence mistakes to avoid. Unlike investing passively in stocks, investing in commercial real estate is a hands-on business. What causes stocks to go up and down is the performance of the companies they represent and the whims of investors buying and selling each day. Conversely, commercial real estate depends on your entrepreneurial skill. This is what I love the most about it and why I am writing this book, which is chock-full of solid, tested advice on how to make the right decisions and avoid pitfalls when buying, selling, repositioning, developing, financing, and managing commercial real estate. When my editor, Richard Narramore, contacted me to see if I would be interested in writing this book, my first thought was—“sounds interesting.” My next thought was: “Hey, wait a minute, this is my book.” Why? Because for 23 years, I have lived and breathed commercial real estate. I have financed just about every type of commercial property—from memory-care facilities to a biodiesel plant—during every economic cycle. I know the pros and cons and the quirks of just about all of them. I know that a light-industrial complex will survive better than an office complex during tough economic times. That for the newbie, apartments are one of the easiest types of property to learn about, but that they can be alarmingly risky, since managing them is a bear. That self-storage is a much better investment for the beginner, as it is easy to manage and usually highly k k
k Trim Size: 7.375in x 9.25in flast01.tex V1 - 07/08/2020 4:22pm Page xxv xxv Introduction k Painter629115 profitable at 85% occupancy, but that self-storage properties are difficult to buy. I have learned that owning a commercial property out of state quadruples the risk, and that if you do not have any working capital that’s an even bigger risk. Did you know that smaller property management compani
Sound, advice on the A-to-Z of commercial real estate Apartment complexes, office buildings, self-storage, long-term care centers for the right investor, commercial real estate ventures can be profitable—and fun! If you are serious about investing, The Encyclopedia of Commercial Real Estate Advice is an invaluable guide.
Commercial real estate can be defined as Commercial real estate is also Chapter 2: Reasons to Invest in Commercial Real Estate Your First Commercial Deal? Create Instant Wealth with Forced Appreciation & Equity Chapter 3: The 7 Habits of Highly Successful Commercial Investors 7 Commercial Investing Myths Chapter 4: 10 Opportunities to .
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