Monthly Archives: August 2016

Chinese appetite for U.S. real estate still strong

On behalf of Kaplin Stewart Meloff Reiter & Stein, P.C. posted in Commercial Real Estate on Aug 29, 2016.

Pennsylvania investors who follow the U.S. residential and commercial real estate markets are likely aware that their Chinese counterparts have been very active in recent years. During the 1980s, iconic American properties like the golf complex at Pebble Beach and New York City’s Art Deco landmark Rockefeller Center were scooped up by Japanese investors, but Chinese nationals now make up the largest group of foreign property buyers.

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County has zoning problem in emergency dispatch project

On behalf of Kaplin Stewart Meloff Reiter & Stein, P.C. posted in Land Use & Zoning on Aug 27, 2016.

Officials in a Pennsylvania county are having a difficult time completing construction of an emergency communications system. For the past two years, Montgomery County officials say that they have been trying to convince township supervisors in Upper Merion to give them the zoning rights to construct a 180-foot tower. The $36 million project requires 30 towers, and so far all but one of the towers has been built.

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Economic trends that are affecting real estate demand

On behalf of Kaplin Stewart Meloff Reiter & Stein, P.C. posted in Commercial Real Estate on Aug 20, 2016.

Paying attention to economic trends may be helpful to those in Pennsylvania who are looking to invest in commercial real estate. Changes in demographics, geopolitical issues, decreased lending and shifts in consumer spending are just some of the factors that can influence commercial real estate prices. Unemployment statistics and the income levels of middle class households are other factors to consider.

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Banks increasingly reliant on real estate lending

On behalf of Kaplin Stewart Meloff Reiter & Stein, P.C. posted in Commercial Real Estate on Aug 18, 2016.

Bank branches in Pennsylvania and across the nation look much the same today as they did in decades past, but the financial sector has been undergoing huge changes behind the scenes. Banking assets have increased from about $209 billion in the mid-1950s to an eye watering $15 trillion today, and the financial sector has gone from accounting for less than half of the nation’s GDP in 1955 to making up 83 percent of today’s economic output. However, perhaps the biggest change in American banking has been the shift from commercial and industrial loans to real estate-based lending.

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Retail sector undergoing changes

On behalf of Kaplin Stewart Meloff Reiter & Stein, P.C. posted in Commercial Real Estate on Aug 14, 2016.

Commercial real estate investors in Pennsylvania may be interested in some trends around retail real estate that are bucking typical expectations. Usually, restaurants can reliably act as anchors in shopping areas that are on the decline. They bring in more foot traffic and spending. However, for several quarters now, foot traffic and sales in the restaurant industry have been weaker.

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Food trucks are bringing customers back to retail

On behalf of Kaplin Stewart Meloff Reiter & Stein, P.C. posted in Commercial Real Estate on Aug 12, 2016.

Commercial real estate investors in Pennsylvania have probably heard about the suffering retail sector. With the popularity of e-commerce, consumers are buying their clothing and electronics online rather than in department stores and malls. While e-commerce is taking customers away from most brick-and-mortar retail, the restaurant sector has been growing, and landlords are now using food to lure shoppers back to retail spaces.

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Specifics of Security Deposit statutes in Pennsylvania

On behalf of Kaplin Stewart Meloff Reiter & Stein, P.C. posted in Real Estate Law on Aug 9, 2016.

Prospective landlords and tenants are both well-served to familiarize themselves with Pennsylvania’s basic statutes concerning the proper handling of security deposits. When it comes to lease conflicts, most of them come back in some way or another to disputes about a security deposit (or lack of one). While the statutes offer a great deal of flexibility to creators of leases regarding how security deposits must be handled, there are some clearly defined guidelines that will help both tenants and landlords stay within the reasonable boundaries of good practices.

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Pros and cons of leasing agricultural real estate

On behalf of Kaplin Stewart Meloff Reiter & Stein, P.C. posted in Land Use & Zoning on Aug 8, 2016.

Under the right circumstances, leasing a piece of land for agricultural uses can be a lucrative option for both the landowner and the land user. A piece of land can have many uses, depending on how it zoned. Before leasing a piece of land for agricultural uses, it is wise to consider the advantages and disadvantages of this kind of arrangement.

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What to consider before investing in real estate

On behalf of Kaplin Stewart Meloff Reiter & Stein, P.C. posted in Commercial Real Estate on Aug 8, 2016.

Pennsylvanians who are interested in investing in real estate may not know where to begin. Real estate investments can be a good way for people to grow their money over a number of years. However, there are several things a potential investor should do before they put down capital on a property.

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Shopping mall property being bought up

On behalf of Kaplin Stewart Meloff Reiter & Stein, P.C. posted in Commercial Real Estate on Aug 7, 2016.

The commercial real estate landscape in Pennsylvania is experiencing some major movement in recent months. The Washington Crown Center mall south of Pittsburgh is under an agreement to be sold by Pennsylvania Real Estate Investment Trust, who is also seeking a buyer for another western Pennsylvania commercial property, the Beaver Valley Mall.

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