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Category: Capital Markets, Multifamily Tags: David Treadwell

Insights from David Treadwell: Navigating Commercial Real Estate Trends and Embracing Change

Q: How did you get into commercial real estate, and what led you to Matthews™?

A: My route into commercial real estate followed a unique trajectory that led me to Matthews™. Though initially trained as an attorney, I found my passion didn’t align with litigation. This led me to a law firm where I worked with an attorney who specialized in entitlement work in commercial real estate, specifically on grocery-anchored centers, convenience stores, and quick-service restaurants, allowing me to approach commercial real estate from a legal perspective.


My journey then shifted towards development, granting me valuable insight and eventually guiding me into capital markets. Matthews™ stood out to me because it provided a platform for me to assume a leadership role, leveraging my production and capital markets experience. I’m excited to share my knowledge and guide young associates using the mentorship model embraced at Matthews™, fostering their growth in the industry.


Q: What sectors are you seeing perform the best in the current environment?

A: Housing is an always-needed product type, specifically apartments. The enduring demand for housing ensures a stable foundation even during challenging economic periods. Apartments tend to weather the storm and remain an essential asset class.


The self-storage sector has also retained its strength, considering its steady occupancy and solid returns. Because consumers “love their stuff,” this sector continues to show its resilience and attractiveness to investors as a reliable performer.


The demise of multi-tenant retail has been greatly exaggerated. Despite the massive proliferation of e-commerce, multi-tenant retail has found its footing and is doing quite well in the current environment.


Q: What skills have you learned that have helped you get to where you are now?

A: Patience! Being a calming influence in our world of hurry up and wait is one of the most important skills in commercial real estate. Every deal has its own set of challenges, and it is up to us to foster that relationship with the client and the lender to work through the closing process while managing expectations.


Q: What trends do you see appearing in the second half of the year?

A: In the second half of this year, we have a general idea of who the players are in the lending world. There has been quite a bit of bad news in the banking sector, which has caused numerous banks to move to the sidelines and not transact. However, based on conversations, we are starting to see a fair share of alternative private lending sources emerge to fill the void.


Q: What makes Denver a great place to invest? Why should an investor consider Denver Real Estate?

A: Denver, CO, has always been a desirable market from a quality-of-life standpoint and diverse employment market, so people continue to move here. Young people were moving here before the pandemic, even without jobs. We had a great run for several years in a row, close to a decade, where we had a net migration of 50,000 per year, which is incredible! The outdoor lifestyle continues to be desirable through the pandemic and even post-pandemic. Our population for the Denver MSA surpassed three million a few years ago, which really put us on the map from a commercial real estate investment standpoint.


Q: How do you see the commercial real estate industry evolving over the next five to 10 years?

A: Technology. We have so much more access to information than when I started, when I had to look things up the old-fashioned way. Now, that information is at our fingertips. I just find that fascinating, and it is just getting better every day.


Q: How are you advising agents in navigating the current market?

A: There’s no question it’s a tough market. But I also say it is an incredible time to learn the business. When you come into the business as a new associate, it typically takes you a year to get up to speed anyway. So why not do it in a challenging market when a lot of deals aren’t happening anyway. This is a great time to build the foundation and relationships with potential clients, so you are better positioned coming out of the downturn. Though some people may not believe we are officially in a downturn, my opinion is that we are. When people go back in time and look at dips in commercial real estate, they typically acknowledge that we were in a recession before it was officially announced, which is what I believe is happening now.


Q: What has been a defining moment in your real estate career?

A: Just finding my niche in capital markets and specializing in financing apartments. Multifamily has always been an interest of mine and a property type that I enjoyed learning. When I decided to focus on multifamily loans, is when I began to thrive. Rather than being a generalist, I became a specialist.


Q: What developments in the industry are you currently most excited about, and why?

A: I am most excited about the build-to-rent or build-for-rent product type. These are entire neighborhoods of rental single-family homes. Because the average home price for a single-family home has skyrocketed over the last several years, young people are having a much more difficult time buying their first house. BTR provides an alternative for those young people who have grown out of wanting to live in the urban, stackable downtown lifestyle. To have their own four walls and a backyard in a BTR neighborhood is a game changer. This is one of the most significant changes we are currently seeing.


Q: What do you consider to be the most important qualities of a successful agent, and how do you help new agents thrive in this fast-paced environment?

A: Learning how to define success rather than just defining it based on a closing. There are plenty of things we do to get to that closing, and you have to understand and appreciate the small successes that get you to that closing. If you define success as just the closing, you are setting yourself up for failure. So, enjoy the journey, enjoy the climb. Set small goals along the way. Keep hitting those goals, whether they are calls, meetings, proposals, etc. This is a numbers game; eventually, you get there, and you get the listing, the escrow, and the closing if you are willing to put in the time and the work.

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