— Two of NAI/Merin Hunter Codman’s commercial real estate experts discuss what it takes to close transactions during the COVID-19 pandemic. —
West Palm Beach, Fla. – NAI/Merin Hunter Codman, Palm Beach County’s leading commercial real estate firm, acknowledges that commercial real estate transaction activity has slowed throughout the first six months of the COVID-19 pandemic but the firm notes that it has not been locked down entirely. Two of the firm’s seasoned veteran brokers, retail expert Bruce Corn and office market specialist Adam Starr, have successfully completed nearly $10,000,000 in lease and sale transactions while most of South Florida’s shelter-in-place mandates remain in place. The secret to their success has been what they have always done… servicing their long-time clients with updated market intelligence and creative deal making options.
Long-time office veteran Adam Starr and retail expert Bruce Corn represent two different commercial real estate market sectors, but they have two things in common – expertise in navigating positive and negative market cycles, as well as long-term, trusted client relationships.
Local office market expert, Adam Starr, who joined NAI/Merin Hunter Codman in January 2020, just six weeks prior to the pandemic shutdown, has facilitated transactions in excess of $5.4 million on behalf of his clients, completing lease transactions in excess of $4.5 million and one building sale in Jacksonville, on behalf of a long-time local client, for $910,000, completed just last week.
Bruce Corn, who has led NAI/Merin Hunter Codman’s retail services for nearly 30 years, has completed both sales and lease transactions totaling over $5.5 million on behalf of his clients.
We asked both Mr. Corn and Mr. Starr, what the #1 piece of advice is that they have given their clients throughout the pandemic. Bruce Corn stated, “I advise my retail clients to be patient until the dust settles when looking to purchase neighborhood centers, and to instead focus near term on single tenant credit deals with pandemic resistant tenants”. Adam Starr replied, “This is now the fourth major economic event I have experienced over the course of my career. Each one provided its own distinct challenges and opportunities. What makes this one different is the continued uncertainty of how companies will occupy office space, both in the short and long term, as we determine how things progress in a post COVID-19 environment. It’s always been my philosophy that if an opportunity presents itself, you make every attempt to try and make a deal, provided it makes sense for your client and their objectives. I think it is more important than ever to be flexible in expectations, be creative and be willing to make some compromises to get transactions closed.”
NAI/Merin Hunter Codman who has been advising clients for over three decades, was recently ranked by the South Florida Business Journal’s Book of Lists as the #2 Property Management firm in Palm Beach County and #3 Commercial Real Estate Brokerage firm in Palm Beach County. When asked the #1 piece of advice firm CEO Jordan C. Paul gives the firms’ landlord representation and property management clients he cites, “Integrity and patience are critical in the current environment. The characteristics that made South Florida a great place to live and work are still in place and our region will bounce back from this pandemic. Landlords and Tenants who work together with transparency will be able to ride through our current challenges and emerge stronger on the other side. We are proud to have associates like Adam Starr and Bruce Corn who have the expertise and integrity to provide value to their clients in all market cycles.”
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