5 at 5: Your Daily Digest for Real Estate Investing, 07/30/2020

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Builder confidence in the older set, refinancing multifamily properties, Dunkin’ not circling the drain, post-COVID-19 office imperatives, and Trump and real estate policy.

In Today’s News

Builder Confidence Seen Building in the 55+ Market

The National Association of Home Builders said today that its NAHB 55+ Housing Market Index showed strong recovery in the second quarter as buyers responded to low rates and tight inventory.

Why it matters: This metric measures current sales, expected sales, and prospective buyer traffic for multi- and single-family units. The future-looking component of it adds weight to the idea that the pandemic bounce back has more room to grow.

The Continuing Rush to Refinance Multifamily Properties

The National Real Estate Investor reports that the low rate environment continues to make it a good time to refinance apartment properties, assuming you can find a lender willing to cut a deal.

Why it matters: Refinancing isn’t just for homeowners, but finding the right lender for investors in multifamily properties can be a bit trickier. This piece offers some helpful background and direction.

Dunkin’ to Close 800 Locations But Reinstates Dividend

Dunkin’ Brands Group (NASDAQ: DNKN) says it plans to close 800 locations in the U.S. by the end of the year, citing sales hammered by the pandemic. Meanwhile, the company says, recovery seems certain enough to reinstate its dividend.

Why it matters: Many of these locations are inside Speedway gas stations, so the jarring site of a shuttered Dunkin’ standalone won’t be quite as noticeable. But its board’s confidence in the future may bode well for other investments heavily tied to real estate, like, say, real estate investment trusts (REITs) and individual companies who withdrew guidance, and in some cases axed dividends, in the past several weeks and now are poised to roll out their own quarterly confessions.

Innovation in Office Sector to Accelerate Post-COVID-19

This REIT Report piece reviews the look-ahead thinking of the head of occupier research at CBRE (NYSE: CBRE). She sees innovation around how everyday use of technology and workspace in two different locations — home and at the office — will evolve as the pandemic fades.

Why it matters: Besides some interesting data- and survey-driven takes on how much space will be needed and how much tenants will be willing to pay, it’s nice just to be able to say “post-COVID-19” right now, isn’t it?

Today on Millionacres

Trump and Housing: Where Does the President Stand on Real Estate Policy?

President Trump’s decision to end Obama-era reporting rules tied to the Fair Housing Act is part of a pattern of regulatory rollbacks that supporters say makes development easier but critics say only encourages continued discrimination in housing.

Why it matters: Rhetoric aside, as the election nears, watch both sides for their proposals that could ultimately affect zoning laws and tax law around investment incentives such as opportunity zones and like-kind exchanges.


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