DAILY READS: Feb. 19, 2020

MetLife backs Maryland's tallest tower. Homebuilding permits make a comeback. How the U.S. is becoming more like Europe. Here's a batch of other critical content for you to read, listen to or watch.

U.S. Home-Building Permits Rise to Highest Since 2007

“Residential starts slipped 3.6 percent to a 1.57 million annualized rate, still the second-fastest pace of the expansion, after an upwardly revised 1.63 million pace in the prior month, according to government figures released Wednesday. January starts exceeded the median estimate in a Bloomberg survey of economists. Permits, a proxy for future construction, advanced 9.2 percent to a 1.55 million rate, the highest since March 2007.” Read more

The Role of ESG Indicators in CRE Investment Decisions Is Only Expected to Grow Further

“’If you’re talking to a European investor, they don’t really differentiate between ESG and financial indicators. If you’re talking to an audience that’s mainly from the U.S. or Asia, the financial indicators are a little more influential in the way those conversations are actually happening. I absolutely think that’s changing,’ says Uma Pattarkine, investment strategy analyst for CenterSquare Investment Management, a global investment manager. ” Read more
National Real Estate Investor

Seattle Job Growth Drives Multifamily Demand, Developers Deliver

“The Seattle metro area added 65,000 jobs last year, the strongest annual increase in more than two decades. To keep up with demand, developers continue to add apartments. At the end of 2019, more than 18,000 units were in the pipeline.” Read more

Phoenix Industrial Market Maintains Low Vacancy Despite Abundance of New Projects

“Greater Phoenix has a checkered history of overbuilding its real estate markets during strong economic times but appears to be avoiding that trend during this cycle.  The city remains in the top five American metro areas in terms of job growth.  During the 12-month period ending November 2019, employers added 56,500 net new jobs to the area, which helped fuel demand for industrial real estate.  During the decade spanning from 2009 through 2019, Phoenix ranked 10th of large cities in terms of total employment growth with an increase of 29.7 percent.” Read more
AZ BizMedia

MetLife Lends $119M on Maryland’s Tallest Residential Tower

“The two-year mortgage, which includes two, one-year extension options, finances 414 Light Street, a 44-story multi family skyscraper on the waterfront in Baltimore’s Inner Harbor neighborhood, just south of Downtown, according to information provided by MetLife.” Read more
Commercial Observer