Monthly Musings

Is there a place for professionalism?

Mar 22 2018

I recently flew into Queenstown with my mountain bike for a seven day trip into Southland and around Central Otago. Part of the planning of the logistics for a trip such as this involves finding accommodation that will store a bike box (used for transporting the bike) for the duration of the trip.

Yard or Carpark - What's the difference?

Mar 22 2018

With city and city fringe areas, car parks have historically been charged for. And recently this pattern has been extended further into industrial areas where tenants have had an expectation that car parks would be included as part of a lease deal.

Asbestos Legislation

Mar 22 2018

There has been a level of scaremongering regarding the asbestos legislation ( The Health and Safety at Work (Asbestos) Regulations 2016) which is set to come into force April 4. As usual, most of the scaremongering comes from parties who either want to take your money – or spend other people’s money.

If enough people say it, it must be true

Mar 01 2018

For years we have been hearing the phrase “time poor” and the refrain about how busy we are, and how stressed for time we are. And everyone buys into it. But the reality is that there are the same number of hours in a day that there have always been.

Market comment March 2018

Mar 01 2018

Each year we conduct a very informal survey as to the extent to which agents’ marketing materials are “romancing’ the truth. We have a theory that there is an inverse relationship between the overall state of the economy, and the extent to which agents “guild the lily” or obfuscate the truth.

Working environment – does it matter?

Jan 27 2018

I subscribe to a number of different news feeds. And it seems that almost every week, at least one of them will have an article on what it is like to work at Facebook/Google/Apple or some other trendy tech company. It’s difficult to grasp how workers at the aforementioned ever get any productive work done.

License to do business

Jan 11 2018

Every year we see in the media a number of lists variously titled “best countries for doing business” or “ease of doing business”.

Can they afford it?

Dec 01 2017

The last 18 months have been particularly good for industrial landlords in Auckland. Rents have increased significantly. Vacancy rates are lower than we have seen for many years. Landlords can pick and choose from tenants.

Market Comment: Election 2017 Fallout

Dec 01 2017

There was an expectation that we would see changes in the marketplace irrespective of the result of the election. Tightening of funding availability and anticipation of increases in interest rates were always going to impact. With a cobbled together government now a reality, and the various parties wish lists of policy either being enacted or revised…

What will our properties look like in the future?

Oct 16 2017

We recently attended a European Real Estate trade fair, and some of the seminars we attended there set us to thinking about how our buildings look now – and how they may look in the future. The rest of the world tend to divide their commercial real estate into a greater variety of classes than we do.

Further observations from Expo Real

Oct 16 2017

There was a lot to learn from international property professionals. Some of the lessons about the European market that we took away with us were: Yields are being driven by occupation rates, rather than cheap money.

Tenant vs Quality Tenant

Oct 16 2017

There is something of an inherent conflict in the motivations of agents and landlords when seeking tenants for vacant buildings. On the surface it would seem that both want the same end result – a tenant signed up. The agent wants the tenant signed up so he (and in our sector it is almost always a “he” ) can take his commission and move on to the next…

The Boy who cried Wolf

Oct 01 2017

I recall a childhood story from Aesop’s fables regarding a shepherd boy and his false cries of “wolf” It goes something like this:

What is LinkedIn?

Oct 01 2017

It only takes a couple of people asking this question to start a thought process. What is LinkedIn, and what purpose does it serve? And why should we use it? It goes something like this:

BUY or SELL? Will an election move the market?

Aug 31 2017

Traditionally the period immediately prior to a general election has seen activity in the market stall. That’s not confined to the real estate market. Activity in most commercial markets slows dramatically. Even in the time we were in the food industry, sales more than halved in the weeks leading up to an election.

The Expedio refurbishment process

Aug 31 2017

As we purchase older buildings (and that can include as young as 10 years old) and as tenants move on,we embark on a refurbishment process. This not just about making the property more attractive to lease.

Precedent is the refuge of the lazy – Gary Hamel

Jul 30 2017

If you are looking for opportunities in business, then often the best places to look are companies and industries that constantly trot out the mantra ”that’s the way we always do it”. Because those are the companies and industries that are likely sleepwalking into the future. They can be easy targets. Being resistant to change means their reaction…

All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others

Jul 30 2017

If we listened to some agents we would not ever have to look at a building. Just multiply the floor area by the going rate for the area and we would arrive at the price. Or take the rental and the prevailing accepted yield and we have the value. But the market doesn’t work quite that way because some buildings are more equal than others – to paraphrase…

Opex increases under the radar

Jul 01 2017

They have largely kept under the radar, but changes to the Fire Service Levy (Fire Emergency Levy from 1 July) have the potential to increase OPEX for industrial tenants substantially. As residential Fire Service levies are capped, the increases to residential owners are minimal, but commercial and industrial tenants will cop the full impact of…

The ratbag tenant problem

Jul 01 2017

It’s not just residential. It’s not just P cooks. It’s a fact of life (unfortunately) that there are ratbag tenants. Not many – but there are some.

Observations from a far off place

Jul 01 2017

We have recently been refreshing our attitude with travels in the lush and green byways and narrow lanes of rural England. With ample time to ponder as we pedal two wheels, the concept has been to ride the countryside, staying off major roads as much as possible. With the aid of a GPS this has taken us well off any beaten track, and down narrow lanes,…

The golden goose wears drag

Jul 01 2017

Well, perhaps not drag. But often golden geese can be well disguised. Sometimes the best opportunities are those which don’t necessarily look like the best opportunities.

The rise of the useless class

May 23 2017

One of the topics we sometimes ponder in our leisure time is the future of many in the work force as technology renders increasing numbers of jobs obsolete. Artificial intelligence, algorithms and automation are replacing people in many areas. Whilst there may be new jobs created, many will require skills that the redundant don’t have, and cannot acquire.

The serious task of qualifying buyers/tenants

May 01 2017

We have previously written about the role of the agent as an intermediary between vendor/landlord and purchaser/tenant. And we have also expressed how much we love to pay commissions – because paying commissions means we are doing deals.

What is a final inspection?

May 01 2017

We have recently experienced examples of confusion as to what exactly a “final inspection” prior to settlement of a sale/purchase of a property means. So we thought we would clarify. And also set out what we believe to be the role of the agent in the “final inspection” process.