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Commercial Property Services   

EXPERIENCE TELLS

News and Views

Tue 31 January 17
£30 Million Portfolio Acquisition

£30 million South East and Midlands 5 office portfolio acquired for FTSE 250 client, who carried out a complex transaction impeccably, acting promptly and professionally at all stages.


Mon 12 December 16
Time to Catch Up

We’ve been so busy that we’ve neglected news announcements here for a while. However, recent highlights include acquisitions of government let offices in Knowsley, a bank investment in St Albans and single let offices in Milton Keynes. Meanwhile we’re negotiating for various multi-lets to work our brains a bit harder!

And all our sales are….er..sold, so if you’re looking for a hard working agent with a great mailing list to market your investment, go to Investments for more information on how we work, and contact David on 01452 770900 [email protected]


Mon 07 March 16
Views: Jamie Oliver is Right and the Consequences are About More Than Good Food (The Economy and the EU Part 1)

Jamie Oliver “I’m not anti-business but there have to be some rules”.* Words from a successful entrepreneur.

Merryn Somerset-Webb, Editor-in-Chief, Money Week: “Fat cat salaries are damaging the social fabric of the country”. http://moneyweek.com/merryns-blog/sky-high-executive-pay-is-damaging-capitalism/. Money Week is a magazine directed at investors in shares and other assets.

It only took each of them about 10 words to sum up subjects that are generating thousands of words of heated argument and go more or less to the heart of our economic and social (in)stability. They are both voices from the business and investment sectors, so probably not communists!

Fairness, and forethought about the long term consequences of individual and collective policy and actions, are not only good for their own sake, they are essential for economic growth. Bad policy, short-termism and “devil-take-the hindmost” greed are getting us nowhere:

1. You’re probably bored of hearing that wealth has been channelled away from the broad middle and working classes to a few super-rich (0.1% or 1% of the population, depending how you define it). However, have you thought about the likelihood that consumer spending will inevitably decline as a result? Why? Because instead of large numbers of people each spending their bit of surplus income on consumer goods, we will have just a few people with lots of surplus income each, who cannot possibly spend it all on goods, however hard they try, whatever toys they buy. What they don’t spend will just get locked into assets and the real business economy will just shrink.

2. The apparent increase in our national wealth over the past several years has been almost entirely created by rising asset prices, rather than production growth. Therefore, in fact, it is an illusion – not economic growth at all, just asset price inflation. In the fashionable phrase, we have become a “rentier” economy.

Classic economic modelling failed to take into account important forces and made wrong assumptions about others. For instance, the “trickle down” economics implemented from the 1980s on turned out to be “trickle up” (and more than a trickle). We recommend books by two economists who have amended and expanded those old models: “The Great Divide”, a compilation of articles by Prof Joseph Stiglitz (Columbia University) and “Stabilizing an Unstable Economy” by the late Hyman Minsky. (The latter is pretty heavy reading but it’s a pity that influential people didn’t read and act on it 30 or even 20 years ago). Also look at some of George Serafeim’s articles on twitter and elsewhere. Definitely pro-business, his pronouncements include “Commerce, the synthesis of entrepreneurship and business, has been one of the most powerful institutions the world has ever seen. Commerce unlocks the highest human potential for creativity, innovation and discovery. http://bponline.amcham.gr/?p=4148

Discussion about the economy is usually presented as a contest between the free market on the one hand and a government-controlled / over-regulated economy on the other. We will argue in Part 2 of this article (coming as soon as we have time!) that there has never been a free-market economy and discuss how the arguments we have set out in Part 1 might affect our view of the forthcoming EU referendum.

*Source: Radio 4 a month or two ago. We can’t remember what the programme was called but, of course, it was about food.

Note: Everything in our “Views” items represents the personal opinion of one or more of us, which does not constitute advice or guaranteed fact but is intended to stimulate thought and discussion.


Fri 12 February 16
VIEWS

HUGE effort and money goes into new communication platforms/channels/devices. If only as much time and effort went into having something USEFUL to COMMUNICATE!

Technology is amazing – We now have machinery that can detect gravity waves! Intellect is amazing – gravity waves were theorized more than 100 years ago! But are our instincts as primitive as they were 500 or 3,000 years ago? We still go to war over power, money and ideology – but with 21st century weapons. Is technology safe in our hands or are we dinosaurs with deadlier weapons than claws and teeth (or clots with cluster bombs)?


Wed 10 February 16
News - Howden Joinery Kirkintilloch Investment

Acting on behalf of a UK fund’s HNW client, we have acquired a trade counter and warehouse investment let to Howden, in an established trade park area with excellent access to the motorway network. For an aerial view: https://goo.gl/maps/9TwbctqUPmq


Tue 17 November 15
Views: Are Yields Low/Prices High? Maybe Not.

By David Klein, Partner

I had a periodic catch up meeting recently with clients of long standing, who own interests in portfolios across the commercial sectors.

Their take on the market is relevant to current discussions about sharpening yields, which are nominally at cycle-peak lows: They feel that the economic cycle is still in its relatively early stages (equivalent to around years 1998-2000 in the previous cycle) and are planning large scale industrial and mixed use development. Their comments are largely about the regions, as they are not very active in Central London.

They also commented as follows about property yields, other asset classes, interest rates, and rents:

• Increasing occupier demand is leading to growing rents and some sectors are desperately short of stock because so little development has been carried out in the past several years. The conversion of commercial property to residential has added still further to the commercial shortage.

• Nominal property yields have to be measured against other asset classes and interest rates:

o The last time property yields were nominally as low as they are now, other asset classes (e.g. gilts, other bonds) showed considerably higher nominal yields than they do now and interest rates were also higher. Consequently, CRE yields implied an expectation of rental growth.

o The consensus appears to be that Central Bank interest rates probably cannot be increased much for several reasons, including low to zero inflation, or even deflation, protection of current economic growth and political stability.

o Current CRE yields therefore appear sensible – before even taking into account expected rental growth.

I’ve speculated aloud about some of this myself in the past few months but – though none of us has a crystal ball – hearing it from a company that invests substantially on its own account and in joint-venture with others is probably worth more than the musings of an agent.


Mon 28 September 15
6 Hours from HOTs to Exchange & Completion!

Our most recent investment sale took 6 hours from sending out a contract to exchange and simultaneous completion – a dramatic demonstration of advantages that can accrue from a full and accurate data room:
Our thanks to data room designers Richard Barber & Co and solicitors Dutton Gregory for their superb help.


Tue 28 July 15
Busy with investment sales successes

In the run up to summer we completed seven investment sales:

Solihull –multi-let office, retail and leisure.
Haslingden – single let industrial
Trowbridge, Wiltshire – multi-let offices
Northwich – single let offices
Halesowen – multi-let office, leisure and light industrial
Knowsley – single let offices
Bradford – single let offices
To download the particulars (for your market research or database) go to the Sales page.
For other information, or to discuss the marketing of investments you want to sell, please contact David Klein.


Tue 21 July 15
Refreshed Website

We’re delighted to announce the launch of our new, or as the jargon goes, refreshed website (yes, we gave it a G&T). Easier to navigate and read, we think.