Can You Really Run Your Commercial Real Estate Business From an iPad?

What has really made the iPad and other tablets useful over the last several years is the explosion of Apps that have become available. The result is that the iPad has become much more than a platform for checking email, web surfing, and watching YouTube videos.

While I still have a desktop computer in the office and am certainly not ready to give it up, I am amazed at all the things I can do with my iPad. The purpose of this slideshow is to highlight some of the apps that can help you take your use of the iPad to the next level.

How I Use Evernote To Keep Track Of Everything

I have been using Evernote for about a year in a rather hit and miss fashion. In the last three months, I began to use it in a very focused way to keep track of everything for both business and personal use. Evernote is a very powerful tool, however it is not terribly intuitive, and it was only after I read Dan Ouellette’s book, “A Complete Guide to Using Evernote For Real Estate”, did I begin to really understand the power of Evernote to manage incredible amounts of information in a highly efficient manner. The purpose of this presentation is to give you some ideas on how you might be able to use Evernote to work for you.

Evernote is a free application that works on the iPhone, Mac, iPad, Android, and PC platforms. If you use it too much, you may have to step up to a paid version, but you can at least start out for free to see if it works for you.

How Will Changes in Technology Affect Future Demand For Office Space?

Current Office BuildingAccording to Jim Young, CEO of RealComm, a commercial real estate and technology advisory firm, “A growing number of corporate property owners say they have up to 50 percent excess leased office space and their goal over the next five to seven years is to eliminate that space”

Mobile technology is not only making these changes possible it is driving office culture.  According to an international study by Cisco, three out of five office workers say they no longer need to be in an office to be productive anymore.  More and more companies are beginning to adopt a “shared seating” approach in which employees “share” seats.  This essentially means they are only in the office for face to face collaberative meetings and spend the rest of their time at their customers or at their homes.

What does this mean for office space utliization in the future?  There are predictions that by 2015 the amount of office space per employee could drop by as much as 75%.  It seems as if the “great recession” is accelerating the adoption of new technologies to lower cost and that the office of the “almost here” future will look very different form the office of the “almost gone” past.

 

The information for this posting came from an article in the Certified Commercial Investment Journal entilted “Resizing or Rightsizing?”.  If you would like a copy of the article, please contact me at craig.johnson@nweire.com

Denali National Park, a Place of Extremes….

Cynthia and I just returned from a week up in Alaska, mostly around Denali National Park. Encompassing 6,000,000 acres, roughly the size of Massachusetts, it is one of the largest nature parks on the planet.  It includes most of the Alaska Range with Mt. McKinley(Mt.Denali to Alaskans) being the crown jewel.

Picture of Mt. McKinley (Mt. Denali for Alaskans)

Unlike the National Parks in the “lower 48”, there is only one road, one way, into the park.  You can only drive on the first 18 miles of the 92 mile road, and then you must board one of the Buses provided by the park service to travel the remaining 74 miles of unpaved road over some of the wildest and untouched country you will ever see.

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Q3-The new commercial real estate value paradigm?

The long standing value paradigm in this industry has always been “Location, Location, Location”.  Perhaps that is beginning to change to “Q3”, a term coined by Stewart Title Chief Economist, Ted Jones in a recent presentation he made in Portland, Oregon here recently.  Q3 is shorthand for the new Paradigm, “Location Quality, Property Quality, and Tenant Quality”.

Case in point, The Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) had a brand new 10 story Leed Gold Certified Building constructed just a few blocks from the White House in Washington DC.  The MBA paid approximately $79 Million in 2008 for this trophy asset and occupied about half of it.  Their inability to lease the rest of the building forced them to sell it to the Costar Group in February 2010 for $41 Million, or a $37.7 Million dollar loss in just over a year. Continue reading