The weather’s heating up, but for mid-market investment sales, it was another week of absolute zero.
The last week of May marked the second time since the onset of the pandemic that commercial sales between $10 million and $30 million ground to a complete halt. After the first time it happened, during the week of April 6, brokers unanimously blamed the coronavirus pandemic for the absence of buying and selling. And while some said they expected to see at least a few mid-market deals in the weeks ahead, others warned that zero could be the new normal for the time being.
“I don’t think anybody is looking to acquire any real estate until the world opens up again a little bit,” Walker & Dunlop’s Aaron Appel said in April. “This is a tremendously distressed situation.”
Stephen Preuss of Cushman & Wakefield echoed that sentiment at the time, saying he expected zero deals per week to be more of a trend moving forward. Although he has not seen that many people drop out of deals completely, he has seen virtually all of them slow down as buyers and sellers look to get a better handle on the pandemic.
“No matter who it is on the transaction, everyone is pushing for a little bit more time,” Preuss said.
Since the initial low in April, the mid-market sector has seen one to four deals per week.
David Schechtman of Meridian Capital previously told TRD that the fates of his deals during the pandemic have run the gamut: some are in hard contract and still expected to close, while others have fallen apart. He still expects to see transactions more frequently as pent-up demand is released.
“I think you’re going to continue to see deals close right through this, and volume is going to pick up tremendously deep into the summer,” he said. “You’re going to see an August that feels a hell of a lot more like March or April.”