What Can Past Real Estate Construction Cycles Tell Us About the Outlook For REITs Today?
Commercial real estate has gone through many boom/bust cycles in the past. These cycles have inevitably affected the performance of REITs through their impact on rents, vacancy rates and property valuations. There are certain features that are common to nearly all these cycles, including overbuilding and a relaxation of risk standards by builders, lenders and investors. There are also differences across these cycles, however, much as Tolstoy wrote in Anna Karenina, “each unhappy family is unhappy in its own way.”