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September, 2020

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Posted by: | Posted on: September 22, 2020

Equity Investors Feel the Pain from Missed Rents

With lockdowns and social distancing measures keeping people at home, tenants all across the US are having difficulty making their rent payments.

Their requests for rent relief are starting to affect equity investors, according to a new report from Bryan Reid, executive director of MSCI Research, and Niel Harmse, senior associate, Global Real Estate Research. Reid and Harmse analyzed fund- and asset-level data for 107 property funds in the UK, Europe, Australia and North America.

Not surprisingly, the pandemic hit retail and hotel rental incomes the hardest. From December to June, the NOI of retail assets declined by 21.4%, and hotel assets saw a 39.7% drop. NOI growth was flat in the office and residential sectors, while it grew 1.4% for the industrial sector, according to the MSCI Global Quarterly Property Fund Index. 

Reid and Harmse also evaluated distribution yields among the funds they tracked to see if they reveal

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Posted by: | Posted on: September 22, 2020

5 Crucial Questions To Ask Before You Renew Your Rental Lease Right Now

Is your lease almost up? Before you renew your rental contract for another year, there are numerous questions you should consider, particularly in the era of COVID-19.

While signing a new lease should never be done without pondering your current circumstances, the coronavirus pandemic has made it all the more crucial to weigh your options first. After all, COVID-19 may have changed many things about how you live and work—and how well your current space and location suit your needs.

So before you sign on that dotted line of a new lease, consider these questions first to make sure it’s the right decision for you.

1. Can I still afford this rental?

The first and most important question to

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Posted by: | Posted on: September 22, 2020

A Million Mortgage Borrowers Fall Through Covid-19 Safety Net

WASHINGTON—About one million homeowners have fallen through the safety net Congress set up early in the coronavirus pandemic to protect borrowers from losing their homes, according to industry data, potentially leaving them vulnerable to foreclosure and eviction.

Homeowners with federally guaranteed mortgages can skip monthly payments for as long as a year without penalty and make them up later. They must call their mortgage company to ask for the relief, known as forbearance, though they aren’t required to prove hardship.

Many people have instead fallen behind on their payments, digging themselves into a deepening financial hole through accumulated missed payments and late fees. They could be at risk of losing their homes once national and local restrictions on evictions and foreclosures expire as early as January.

“Some borrowers are falling through the cracks that we’re not picking up,” said Lisa Rice, president and chief executive of the National Fair Housing

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Posted by: | Posted on: September 21, 2020

Regulatory, Legal and Debt Issues Matter in Tenant Negotiations

When a landlord is negotiating with a tenant, understanding its balance sheet, cash position and debt load and maturity schedule are key to a successful outcome. 

“If they have debt, has the tenant had any conversations with the lenders about potentially extending the period when they need to service it or move interest payments back on the calendar,” says Brad Tisdahl, Principal and CEO of Tenant Risk Assessment.

Getting answers to those questions can help a landlord understand the tenant’s balance sheet flexibility.

“We want to understand how flexible a company’s balance sheet is to ride out the pandemic and the surrounding uncertainty,” Tisdahl says. “When we’re thinking about that, we’re trying to assess whether we’re going to be granting relief to a tenant that may not survive the pandemic.” 

The lender’s relationship with the tenant is pivotal.

“We’re trying to understand whether a lender is going to be inflexible,

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Posted by: | Posted on: September 21, 2020

Moving to the Country? This Overlooked Loan Makes It So Easy

With the COVID-19 pandemic still going strong, many city dwellers may be considering a move to the country—and there’s a specific type of mortgage that can help make this a reality, called a USDA loan.

Offered by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and backed by the agency’s Rural Development Guaranteed Housing Loan Program, these mortgages are designed to help buyers with moderate or low income purchase property outside cities.

They accomplish this by offering several key benefits—such as low or no down payments and looser qualifications for income and credit history.

“More people should absolutely consider using USDA loans to finance their homes,” says Jan Hadder, regional vice president of the builder division at Silverton Mortgage in Columbia, SC. “If you’re not

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