From the Editor
By Neil Pierson
Technology can be a friend
or foe, depending on the situation
If you have kids in school, you’ve probably heard things like, “Dad, I want a new iPad for Christmas,” or “Mom,
can you buy me a drone for my birthday?”
Technology has infiltrated our lives, from smart-home and mobile-payment apps to the gadgets our children
use for education and entertainment. Commercial mortgage brokers can certainly relate: Innovations like geographic information systems, imaging and real-time data have revolutionized the industry to the point where
it’s difficult to keep up each year.
This month’s magazine is centered on technology and includes a big-picture article
from Tommy Snyder of 1619 Capital Partners. In “Cut Through the Mortgage Matrix”
on Page 31, Snyder talks about the spectrum of mortgage-related tasks that technology has impacted, including a borrower’s financial information and third-party
reports, such as inspections and appraisals.
Our Q&A on Page 20 features CrediFi CEO Ely Razin, who has a wealth of knowledge
about the specific ways in which big data, mapping and imaging are affecting commercial real estate. The takeaway here is that these tools are incredibly helpful as long
as a broker is diligent about learning to implement them correctly.
The focus shifts to land loans on Page 38, where Mark Falzone of Kennedy Funding
Financial argues that direct lenders are best positioned to close these types of deals.
Whereas traditional banks may focus only on the borrower’s financial well-being, an
alternative direct lender can see the value that’s not readily apparent in raw land —
even when the land is located outside the U.S.
Regardless of the property types you work with, Gregg Gerken’s article on Page 44
likely offers help, with a transition-into-2018 overview of the multifamily, retail, office
and industrial sectors. Gerken, the head of U.S. commercial real estate at TD Bank, says
wage and job growth are two of the factors that will impact multifamily investment
opportunities, for example.
Discretionary spending may be tight in some households, but according to the National Restaurant Association,
nine in 10 consumers say they enjoy going to restaurants. And sales figures back that up as the industry’s 2017
revenues are estimated to be nearly $800 billion, a 36 percent jump from 2010 .
So, brokers should keep an eye on restaurant and bar investments. On Page 48, Juan Barcelo of Silver Hill
Funding LLC says these properties are prime targets for small-balance lenders, whether brokers are looking for an
alternative, nonbank funding source or one approved by the U.S. Small Business Administration.
On Page 57, Jay Litt of The Litt Group delves further into his specialty of hospitality properties. In “Hotel and
Resort Lending Is No Vacation,” he lays out advice for brokers to make these deals less complex and more
lender-friendly. These tactics could be especially useful at a time when hotel revenues have plateaued and
commercial mortgage-backed securities (CMBS) are seeing higher default risks. Finally, Garry Barnes of PW
Partners Consultancy wraps up October’s articles on Page 74 with a detailed blueprint for cultivating and
maintaining high-quality business relationships. Time, knowledge and a commitment to success are the three
main keys, Barnes says.
As we enter the autumn months and that blessed period of holiday purchases draws closer, we hope your
experiences with job-related technology go smoothly. After all, there are fewer guarantees with kids — they
may drop that new iPad on the pavement or crash that new drone into a tree.
Neil Pierson is editor of Scotsman Guide Commercial Edition.
Reach him at (800) 297-6061 or firstname.lastname@example.org.