Commercial real estate investments remain steady

The commercial real estate market has been moving slowly over the last few years, as fewer business owners have sought investment loans to expand their companies in recent months, due to the uncertain economy. A new survey released by Real Estate Research Corporation (RERC), Deloitte and the National Association of Realtors (NAR) indicated the market is holding steady, at least for the time being, and investors and businesses will need to adjust their strategies in order to adapt to the market.

"It is time to stop waiting for the economy and the investment environment to get better," said Kenneth Riggs Jr., chairman and president of RERC. "This is it - this is the new normal - and we need to turn the page on the past and make the adjustments needed to be successful for the balance of this decade. Investors are facing the challenges ahead, and commercial real estate continues to be an attractive investment for a variety of reasons in this economic climate."

A steadying market 
Survey results indicate the economy will improve only slightly in the coming year. Some of the reasons behind the limited growth are uncertainty about the national deficit, tax increases and cuts in government spending. Despite this, some project finance is available for business seeking to expand operations or invest in new properties. 

The market has been experiencing a slow but steady recovery for some time; according to the National Council of Real Estate Investment Fiduciaries (NCREIF) Property Index, returns on real estate in the fourth quarter rose to 2.54 percent, compared to the third quarter's 2.34 percent. 

As the market slowly recovers, more entrepreneurs may consider opening new companies or expanding their businesses, resulting in an increased need for commercial real estate. However, they may be unsure of where to turn in order to obtain business financing, loans and advice on the real estate market and how they should proceed with any investments. Many entrepreneurs don't realize small and mid-sized banks provide companies with a variety of options with it comes to real estate, in addition to a plethora of choices in regard to small business banking and cash management. In addition, smaller institutions have the ability to provide clients with more personalized service, a benefit larger banks often can't offer their business customers. 

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