Monday, June 29, 2009

Thinking small ball...

In baseball some managers play small ball: a game strategy emphasizing single run production through bunts, hit-and-runs and base stealing. You see that more in the NL, where there is no DH. (And yes, I hate the DH rule.)

The same is true in commercial real estate. While the big deals you read about in the papers are at a near-standstill, the smaller deals -- bloop singles, reaching on an error, etc. -- are getting done. There's money for those small deals out there, and that's all because of less risk. That and the fact that you do not have to depend on CMBS to do a deal.

These deals aren't sexy, nor are the returns so great sometimes, but the deals are at least there. Face it, if you cannot do a Wal-Mart bond lease deal, a GSA building or medical offices, you may as well hang it up. I like seeing clients go after singles and doubles and then swing for the fences once in a while too.

Full disclosure: I have a vested financial interest in saying something like this because these types of smaller deals are in my wheelhouse, so I stand to make money from those deals. I am not equipped (or even interested, for that matter, other than as a spectator) in the mega-deals we saw a few years ago. But it also happens to be my humble opinion.

All that said, we need to start seeing activity on the larger deals and construction to effectuate a CRE recovery. Banks are afraid, and perhaps this is why. But, much as I enjoy small ball personally, the market also has to swing for the fences in order to thrive.

2 comments:

Chris Fyvie said...

Love the small ball. Although the deals are tedious and time consuming you're meeting tenants that actually appreciate your time and help. Help them early and you can create clients for life!

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