What is your real estate forecast for the balance of the year?


Gail Chrzan
Senior Vice President
Blue & Obrecht Realty

“Many negative domestic and worldwide situations are causing businesses to pause with their real estate decisions and, collectively, are contributing to a challenging commercial office environment in the months ahead. But, as always, the real estate industry is looking at their markets with a creative eye. There are bright spots on the horizon. We see continued strength in the medical office building sector, as our population ages and there is greater emphasis on the healthcare industry. Pricing for MOBs remains consistent and, as spaces are released, the existing infrastructure helps keep tenant build-out costs at reasonable levels. Baltimore City is still struggling to attract new users and workers have not returned to their downtown offices in full force, which is also contributing to the surge in sublease space. One solution is the conversion of older buildings to multifamily uses and we expect more examples in the months and years ahead.”

Kelly Ennis
Founder and Managing Principal
The Verve Partnership

“We are seeing a 100% uptick in organizations, regionally, who want to ‘go back to the office’ in some capacity. We are leading real estate and workplace strategies with 90% of our clients right now, which is a fantastic indicator that the market is improving and the office is not going away. Similar to pre-pandemic conversations, the entry back into work is 100% culture-related and very dependent on the market sector. It will vary over time and space types but we are genuinely excited for the next few months leading into 2023.”

Bill Holzman
Vice President, Retail Leasing
St. John Properties, Inc.

“Thanks in part to pent-up demand from the past several years, our retail leasing team has experienced a high volume of activity. And most retail brokerage professionals will tell you the same thing, which bodes well for the balance of 2022. We are fielding interest from a variety of end-users interested in big box locations, pad sites and inline stores. The gas station, convenience store and fast-casual restaurant categories continue to gain traction, along with a newer category of freestanding carwashes, which are underrepresented throughout Maryland. We do not know what to expect in Q1 2023, but everyone is riding a big wave now.”

Mark Sapperstein
Chief Executive Officer
28 Walker Development

“There is good and bad in the multifamily sector.  Our projects are nearly 100% occupied in the Baltimore area and rates are rising, which sounds all wonderful on the surface. However, rising mortgage rates are preventing families and individuals from purchasing a house in the $300,00-$400,000 range, because their monthly payments have become unaffordable. This is keeping certain groups as renters, which is a real shame. Buyers in the $500,000-$600,000 range are less impacted because they, typically, are already homeowners and are in the process of selling a home. The rates, jumping from 2.5% to 3% to now 5% have knocked many out of the ballgame. Many will have to wait for the return of lower rates before thinking about purchasing a home.”

Jason Schwartzberg
MD Energy Advisors

“With the rising interest rate and construction cost environments, our sponsors have had to get creative with filling gaps in the capital stack. Deals are still getting across the finish line particularly in the self-storage and senior housing sectors. In order to solve for the gaps, we have been effectively leveraging our CPACE financing tool as it provides fixed rate, long term, non-recourse financing. We are optimistic that deals will continue to be consummated but will continue to require inventiveness to get across the finish line.”

Patrick Smith
SIOR, Vice President
MacKenzie Commercial Real Estate Services

“We are still seeing strong tenant demand in the industrial market despite the economic climate.  I think we will see landlords remain firm on their proposed rental rates and business terms.  Since most of the product under construction is pre-leased, the vacancy rates should remain low.  This will continue to make it difficult for tenants to find suitable space for their businesses, especially smaller local tenants with less buying power. I am beginning to see a healthy amount of price resistance in the sale market, whether it be user sales or investment sales. The rising interest rates will impact values and we will see a disconnect between buyers and sellers on pricing.  I predict a lull in sale transactions as everyone’s expectations adjust to the new normal. That said, demand for industrial acquisitions will remain strong, but transaction volume will be a matter of seller motivation.”