Tag Archives: Southern NJ Commercial Real Estate


Adequate Due Diligence for Commercial Properties

How do you know if you have done Due Diligence for Commercial Properties? I hear statements like the one below all the time. 

“I’m buying a commercial/industrial property; I need a Phase I Environmental Site Assessment (Phase I ESA)” or “I’m leasing a commercial/ industrial property; I don’t need to worry about performing any due diligence because I’m not purchasing the property”.

But is a Phase I ESA all you need, or is that too much? How much time do you have to perform your due diligence? How much money are you willing to spend? How much risk and potential liability are you willing to accept? These are all questions that you might want to consider as you proceed with your real estate transaction.

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As I’ve discussed in an earlier article, when performing due diligence to obtain innocent purchase protection in New Jersey, one needs to perform both an ASTM Phase I ESA and a Preliminary Assessment (PA). But, is that really all you need as far as your due diligence is concerned? While a Phase I ESA or PA report helps provide protections against certain environmental liabilities, risks, and concerns – specifically, the federal Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act (CERCLA) or the New Jersey Spill Act, respectively – they don’t protect against all liabilities, risks, and concerns. For example, these assessments typically don’t include an evaluation for the presence of wetlands, asbestos, lead-based paint, or radon. Nor do they include an evaluation of the building’s structural or mechanical condition, an evaluation of the building’s energy use or waste  management efficiency, or whether the facility operations are in current compliance with applicable state or federal regulations and requirements.

It’s important to know which assessments you need, if any, because not all these due diligence concerns are necessarily your due diligence concerns. If you’re only planning on leasing a facility, you may not be interested in determining the structural or mechanical integrity of the building envelope, since that would likely be the responsibility of the landlord. Or, if you’re involved in litigation regarding the site, you may require a review of the historical conditions and regulatory status of the facility, but not necessarily need a comprehensive review of the current condition of the property. Perhaps you only need a limited scope of work now, such as a simple “desktop review”, or a Phase I ESA for refinancing purposes, but you also plan on expanding the facility in the future; in this case, you may need to know if there are any restrictions to building construction, such as the presence of wetlands or engineering limitations at the site. It all depends on what you plan on doing at the site, both now and in the future.

So how do you know if you’re paying too much for a due diligence assessment you don’t necessarily need, or not performing enough due diligence to give you the protection you need and the comfort and peace of mind you expect?

Answer: Find a consultant whom you trust, and who specializes in environmental, engineering, and land use due diligence. Your consultant should be your advocate. Ask questions of your consultant, and expect your consultant to ask questions of you and what your current and future plans are for the property. If you don’t feel comfortable or understand the answers, it may be best to discuss the matter further with other consultants to ensure you’ve made the best choice for your particular needs.

Here at Whitman, we have extensive experience in real estate due diligence. We work on many different types of projects with all types of clients, including individuals and corporations who want to buy a property, investors who want to sell their properties, banks that are overseeing a property refinance, companies that want to expand their operations, facilities that want to assess the efficiency and compliance of their current operations, businesses that want to rent a leasehold, attorneys who require historical information regarding former site operations, and the list goes on.

More than anything, we take pride in our commitment and dedication to our clients’ best interests, and enjoy finding creative solutions for our clients’ challenges. We look forward to helping you attain and then surpass your business goals.

To help you ascertain what level and amount of due diligence you may require, Whitman has designed a simple= “cheat sheet” that summarizes many of our due diligence services, and when you might consider utilizing them.

If you have any questions regarding real estate due diligence, would like a copy of the due diligence cheat sheet, or would like a quote for any of Whitman’s wide selection of due diligence services, please contact Chemmie Sokolic, Whitman’s Director of Due Diligence Services, at 732-390-5858 or csokolic@whitmanco.com.

 

 

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WCRE Adds Accomplished Business Development Officer Tom Bove

Tom Bove to Expand WCRE’s Relationships in Professional Service Sector

Tom BoveWolf Commercial Real Estate (WCRE) is pleased to announce the hiring of Tom Bove, who will serve as Business Development Officer.  Bove brings more than 20 years of sales leadership and business development experience to complement the skilled team at WCRE. 

As Business Development Officer, Tom will work closely with WCRE’s sales professionals and its Director of Strategic Relationships to generate new business relationships with service professionals in the region.
A consummate business connector and manager, Bove has developed an extensive network of trusted relationships leading sales teams and managing customer accounts for the past two decades.  In addition, his experience in the tech and IT sectors will open new avenues of opportunity for WCRE.

“Each new member of our team strengthens our ability to meet specific client needs,” said Jason Wolf, founder and managing principal of WCRE. “Tom brings a valuable background as a leader who can build and manage new business relationships, allowing WCRE to serve clients in new ways.”

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About WCRE

WCRE is a full-service commercial real estate brokerage and advisory firm specializing in office, retail, medical, industrial and investment properties in Southern New Jersey and the Philadelphia region. We provide a complete range of real estate services to commercial property owners, companies, banks, commercial loan servicers, and investors seeking the highest quality of service, proven expertise, and a total commitment to client-focused relationships. Through our intensive focus on our clients’ business goals, our commitment to the community, and our highly personal approach to client service, WCRE is creating a new culture and a higher standard. We go well beyond helping with property transactions and serve as a strategic partner invested in your long term growth and success.

Learn more about WCRE at www.wolfcre.com, on Twitter & Instagram @WCRE1, and on Facebook at Wolf Commercial Real Estate, LLC. Visit our blog pages at www.southjerseyofficespace.com, www.southjerseyindustrialspace.com, www.southjerseymedicalspace.com, www.southjerseyretailspace.com, www.phillyofficespace.com, www.phillyindustrialspace.com, www.phillymedicalspace.com and www.phillyretailspace.com.

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WCRE ADDS RYAN BARIKIAN TO NEW JERSEY TEAM

WCRE ADDS SENIOR ASSOCIATE

Ryan Barikian to serve expanding roster of clients at regional commercial real estate firm

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Ryan Barikian Release PDF

August 10, 2016 – Marlton, NJ – Wolf Commercial Real Estate (WCRE) is pleased to announce the hiring of Ryan Barikian, who will serve as Senior Associate.  Barikian brings eight years of sales and leadership experience in the commercial and residential title insurance industry to complement the skilled team at WCRE.

As Senior Associate, Ryan will work closely with the WCRE sales team to generate new business relationships with banks, developers, loan servicers, investors and other service professionals in the real estate industry.

A consummate business connector, Ryan has developed an extensive network of trusted relationships throughout the Southern New Jersey and Greater Philadelphia markets. He has an extensive understanding of the roles which attorneys, underwriters, accountants, and other service professionals play in commercial real estate transactions. His extensive knowledge of the title and settlement process gives him unique insights that will aid and inform clients.

“Each new member of our team strengthens our ability to meet specific needs and build even more successful relationships with our clients and community,” said Jason Wolf, founder and managing principal of WCRE. “Ryan brings a valuable background as a leader and real estate professional that will allow WCRE to serve clients in new ways.”

About WCRE

WCRE is a full-service commercial real estate brokerage and advisory firm specializing in office, retail, medical, industrial and investment properties in Southern New Jersey and the Philadelphia region. We provide a complete range of real estate services to commercial property owners, companies, banks, commercial loan servicers, and investors seeking the highest quality of service, proven expertise, and a total commitment to client-focused relationships. Through our intensive focus on our clients’ business goals, our commitment to the community, and our highly personal approach to client service, WCRE is creating a new culture and a higher standard. We go well beyond helping with property transactions and serve as a strategic partner invested in your long term growth and success.

Learn more about WCRE online at www.wolfcre.com, on Twitter & Instagram @WCRE1, and on Facebook at Wolf Commercial Real Estate, LLC. Visit our blog pages at ww.southjerseyofficespace.com, www.southjerseyindustrialspace.com, www.southjerseymedicalspace.com, www.southjerseyretailspace.com, www.phillyofficespace.com, www.phillyindustrialspace.com , www.phillymedicalspace.com and www.phillyretailspace.com.

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WCRE FIRST QUARTER REPORT: SEASONAL SLOW-DOWN, SHAKY FINANCIAL MARKETS TAKE TOLL ON SOUTHERN NEW JERSEY, BUT AREAS OF STRENGTH REMAIN

Philadelphia Continues its Strengthening Trend

Q1 2016 Press Release in PDF

April 7, 2016 – Marlton, NJ –Commercial real estate brokerage WCRE reported in its latest quarterly analysis that 2016 began much as 2015 ended: with Southern New Jersey commercial real estate growth slowing down somewhat. The report included some reasons to stay optimistic, such as continuing healthy activity levels among local bellwether industries, the ongoing decline in office vacancy rates, and signs of gradual business expansion.

“The first quarter was marked by volatility in the financial markets, which seemed to have stabilized by the end of the quarter,” said Jason Wolf, founder and managing principal of WCRE. “This uncertainty, coupled with the expected cyclical slow-down due to winter weather seem to have been a drag on our market, but we believe the overall outlook is still strong.”

There were approximately 326,533 square feet of new leases and renewals executed in the three counties surveyed, which represents a drop of +/- 30 percent compared with the first quarter of 2015. The quarter also saw a drop in prospecting, with about 200,000 SF of lease deals in the pipeline and expected to close in the near term. Still, the trend of positive absorption continued, making up approximately 146,532 square feet of total activity, up about ten percent over the previous quarter. Vacancy rates continued to improve, as well, and several large trophy assets changed hands as owners repositioned and new investors entered our market.

Other office market highlights from the report:

  • Overall vacancy in the market continues to drop, and is now down to approximately 11.45%. This is a slight improvement over the previous quarter.
  • Average rents for Class A & B product continue to show strong support in the range of $10.00-$14.00/sf NNN or $21.00-$25.00/sf gross for the deals completed during the first quarter. This is essentially unchanged from the previous two quarters.
  • All of the major private owners and REITS showed moderate leasing and prospect activity for the first quarter – with Burlington County vacancies tightening up, many larger vacancy opportunities are also shifting towards Camden County, which is not controlled by these ownership entities.
  • New Jersey’s unemployment rate moved lower for the 13th consecutive month, down to 4.3 percent. It is down by two full points over the past year and is now at the lowest level since August 2007.

WCRE has expanded into southeastern Pennsylvania, and the firm’s quarterly reports now include a section on transactions, rates, and news from Philadelphia and the suburbs. Highlights from the first quarter Pennsylvania section include:

  • The Philadelphia regional office market is continuing its positive trajectory from 2015 in terms of rental rate growth and decline in vacancy rates. While much of this is felt in the CBD core, some of the suburban markets are experiencing similar activity. Repositioning of older Class B product to Core Class A assets coupled with the strong investor appetite for value-add deals is anticipated to continue through 2016.
  • Center City Philadelphia, specifically Market East, is experiencing a resurgence of activity including PREIT’s “top-to-bottom” renovation at the Gallery at Market East. Rental rates in the CBD are at all-time highs while demand from both regional and national tenants continuing to flock to the market. In terms of the suburban markets, the appetite for core assets continues to be paramount from institutional investors with value-add plays on older center, similar to the office market. Target will be opening two of its TargetExpress-brand stores in Center City Philadelphia in the summer of 2016.
  • The Philadelphia regional industrial market is strong, with large distribution facilities continuing to hold the greatest demand from institutional players. Rental rates continue to increase while vacancy rates are holding steady. There have been a variety of transactions, specifically in the expanded market area with prices fetching all time high levels. Planned improvements at Philadelphia’s port over the next three years should provide continued demand for warehouse space.
  • Philadelphia’s expanding CBD is seeing new construction across all sectors. The Comcast Innovation and Technology Center and Cira South represent two of the largest office uses under construction. At 16th & Chestnut, the 700-room, dual-brand W/Element hotel has broken ground and is expected to open in 2017. Major mixed-use projects are planned for the long-vacant, block-long parcels at Broad and Washington. Several Market East projects are underway, and Drexel is planning to develop more than 6 million square feet in its University City Innovation Neighborhood.

WCRE also reported on the Southern New Jersey retail market, noting mixed results there, as well. Highlights from the retail section of the report include:

  • Overall retail and food establishment sales dropped during the first quarter, which is expected post-holiday season.
  • Retail vacancy in Camden County stood at 11 percent, with average rents in the range of $12.12/sf NNN.
  • Retail vacancy in Burlington County stood at 14.8 percent, with average rents in the range of $12.05/sf NNN.
  • Retail vacancy in Gloucester County stood at 6.9 percent, with average rents in the range of $11.52/sf NNN.

The full report is available upon request.

About WCRE

WCRE is a full-service commercial real estate brokerage and advisory firm specializing in office, retail, medical, industrial and investment properties in Southern New Jersey and the Philadelphia region. We provide a complete range of real estate services to commercial property owners, companies, banks, commercial loan servicers, and investors seeking the highest quality of service, proven expertise, and a total commitment to client-focused relationships. Through our intensive focus on our clients’ business goals, our commitment to the community, and our highly personal approach to client service, WCRE is creating a new culture and a higher standard. We go well beyond helping with property transactions and serve as a strategic partner invested in your long term growth and success.

Learn more about WCRE online at www.wolfcre.com, on Twitter & Instagram @WCRE1, and on Facebook at Wolf Commercial Real Estate, LLC. Visit our blog pages at www.southjerseyofficespace.com, www.southjerseyindustrialspace.com, www.southjerseymedicalspace.com, www.southjerseyretailspace.com, www.phillyofficespace.com, www.phillyindustrialspace.com , www.phillymedicalspace.com and www.phillyretailspace.com.

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Funding Project Infrastructure

Funding Project Infrastructure

Application Period Open for Commonwealth Financing Authority Multimodal Grants.

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In 2013, Pennsylvania passed Act 89, legislation that created new funding for investment in transportation projects statewide. One notable element of the bill was the creation of a Multimodal Fund for non-highway capital needs. By the fifth year of the fund, nearly $144 million in will be awarded annually to public and private entities for transportation-related projects statewide. Beginning on March 1st, applications are being accepted for the latest round of funding.

Broadly defined, the multimodal grants are available for planning and capital projects related to ports and waterways, freight and passenger rail, aviation, transit, and bicycle and pedestrian use. Eligible applicants are municipalities, councils of government, private businesses and nonprofits, economic development organizations, public transportation agencies, or railroad and port operators.

Many multimodal grants are used for capital improvements that are purely public in nature, such as the Delaware River Waterfront Corporation’s project to improve Spring Garden Street in the area of I-95. However, multimodal funding can be used to supplement construction of private developments under the banner of streetscape and pedestrian improvements. Examples of recent projects in Philadelphia include:

  • AIMCO and the City of Philadelphia are collaborating on the redevelopment of Park Towne Place, an 18-story residential and retail complex. A multimodal grant will fund street and sidewalk repairs, the installation of ADA sidewalks and drive entries, lighting and signage, and the upgrading of shuttle stops along the adjacent Benjamin Franklin Parkway.
  • Children’s’ Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) will use a grant to help fund the construction of a pedestrian bridge and stairway to link its main campus to the Schuylkill Banks/River Trail. The project will provide a safer crossing over an active rail line.
  • The Pennsylvania Real Estate Investment Trust (PREIT) received a grant to renovate the entrances and exits along 9th and 10th streets at the Gallery Mall. The funds will make the area safer and more accessible with improved lighting, streetscapes and signage.

Grants can range anywhere from $500,000 to $3 million. Matching funds are required and project expenditures must take place within certain timeframe to qualify for reimbursement.

There are actually two separately-administered multimodal programs, each with its own set of deadlines. One is jointly administered by the Commonwealth Financing Authority (CFA) and Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED). The application period for CFA/DCED multimodal grants runs from March 1, 2016 to July 3, 2016. Projects will be awarded at the November 2016 CFA board meeting.

The other multimodal fund is administered by the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT); the next application period is expected to open later in 2016. Qualifying applicants may apply to both the CFA/DCED and PennDOT programs for the same project.

Public incentives can be a useful tool for making a project economically viable, but should not be viewed as a primary source of funding. Applicants should also be aware that additional advocacy may be needed as part of a successful application.

If you are developing a project which may qualify for funding, the professionals at Wolf Commercial Real Estate can provide advice on a variety of successful strategies for pursing public and private sources of funding.

For more information:

http://www.newpa.com/programs/multimodal-transportation-fund/

http://www.penndot.gov/ProjectAndPrograms/MultimodalProgram/Pages/default.aspx#.VtSnm_krLIV

For more information about Philly or New Jersey office space, Philly or South Jersey retail space or other Philadelphia and Southern New Jersey commercial properties, please call 215-799-6900 or 856-857-6300 to speak with Jason Wolf (jason.wolf@wolfcre.com) Leor Hemo (leor.hemo@wolfcre.com) or Lee Fein (lee.fein@wolfcre.com) at Wolf Commercial Real Estate, a leading Philadelphia commercial real estate brokerage firm with expertise in Philly office space and Philly retail space.

Wolf Commercial Real Estate is a Philadelphia commercial real estate broker that provides a full range of Philadelphia commercial real estate listings and services, marketing commercial offices, medical properties, industrial properties, land properties, retail buildings and other Philadelphia commercial properties for buyers, tenants, investors and sellers.

Wolf Commercial Real Estate, a Philadelphia and South Jersey commercial real estate broker that specializes in Philadelphia and Southern New Jersey commercial real estate listings, provides unparalleled expertise in matching companies and individuals seeking new Philly and New Jersey office space or Philly and South Jersey retail space with the Philadelphia and Southern New Jersey commercial properties that best meets their needs.  As experts in Philadelphia and New Jersey commercial real estate listings and services, the team at our Philadelphia and South Jersey commercial real estate brokerage firm provides ongoing detailed information about Philadelphia and New Jersey commercial properties to our clients and prospects to help them achieve their real estate goals.  If you are looking for Philly or New Jersey office space or Philly or South Jersey retail space for sale or lease, Wolf Commercial Real Estate is the Philadelphia and Southern New Jersey commercial real estate broker you need — a strategic partner who is fully invested in your long-term growth and success.

Please visit our websites for a full listing of South Jersey and Philadelphia commercial properties for lease or sale through our Philadelphia commercial real estate brokerage firm.

For More Information Contact:

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Anthony V. Mannino, Esq.

P: 215 799 6900

D: 215 799 6140

F: 856 283 3950

M: 215 470 6084
anthony.mannino@wolfcre.com

 

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