THERE ARE SEVERAL MAJOR DEVELOPMENTS
taking place this year that have great potential to impact
CRE. These trends range widely and may be seemingly
disconnected but the underlying theme is the same—they
will affect the behavior and decision-making processes of
investors, lenders, tenants and property owners alike. Not
to mention provide a good amount of work for those who
serve as advisors to these groups in various capacities.
As such, we at the ALM Real Estate Media Group have
pinpointed a number of trends to pay particular attention
to as we plan our coverage for 2018. We’ve kicked off this year by diving into two of
them: the impact of the Tax Cut and Jobs Act (Erika Morphy’s “Decoding the New Tax
Bill”) and the way technology, in its various forms, is moving the sector forward in ways
some describe as “revolutionary” (Carrie Rossenfeld’s “Shaking Up the Status Quo.”)
Passed in late December and put into effect at the start of this year, the hurriedly
written Tax Cut and Jobs Act represents the biggest and most complex change to the
US tax code in 30 years. While it has been largely welcomed by the business and CRE
communities, there are numerous provisions in the legislation requiring further clarification from the Treasury Department.
We’ll be closely monitoring and evaluating any guidance coming out of Capitol Hill.
The law is so sweeping and immense that the industry will be feeling its way through
for several months. However, there’s no question the legislation will affect behavior on a
massive scale and will ultimately boost the performance of real estate assets.
Real estate technology, including Fintech, is another area of focus for our editorial
team, and an exciting one to boot. Unlike the last tech boom, this version of the tech
revolution isn’t threatening to cripple the economy. Rather, it’s ushering in a new wave
of opportunities, employment growth and innovation.
This is particularly the case for CRE, which has long been a laggard in adopting tech
and, therefore, presents an incredible amount of potential in terms of investment and
advancement. An unprecedented wave of CRE technology innovation is expected to
change the way real estate is bought, sold and managed.
Over the past couple of years, we’ve regularly covered tech innovations, from
crowdfunding and automation, to e-commerce and augmented/virtual reality, to Smart
Buildings, Big Data and the Internet of Things. And lately, there’s been a new concept:
the use of blockchain technology in CRE.
Known until recently as the technology powering Bitcoin, blockchain has the potential to play a groundbreaking role with regard to the CRE transaction process. While
it promises to deliver a secure way to streamline the dealmaking procedure, it also
threatens to eliminate an entire portion of the process by automating the responsibilities
handled by the “middle men” of the transaction.
Think back five or seven years ago. Could you have imagined that you could make
extra money on the side by using your car as a taxi or renting out your apartment to
strangers as a hotel room? So even the most outlandish tech-related idea—say, buying
a commercial investment online with bitcoin—isn’t necessarily outside the realm of possibility. And that’s what makes the coverage of tech innovation in CRE so exciting.
You can check out the first of this year’s coverage of both these trends on the pages
of this issue and those to come throughout the year. Be sure as well to visit GlobeSt.
com for our daily news and features, and look ahead at our 2018 editorial plans on our
online calendar, ( www.globest.com/real-estate-forum). And, as always, feel free to contact me with questions, comments and ideas of your own.
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