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5 at 5: Your Daily Digest for Real Estate Investing, 08/13/2020

Millionacres logo Millionacres 8/13/2020 Marc Rapport
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Retail imports sharply lower, advocates for hotel robots, tracking suburban interest, and old houses and remodeling interest both on the rise.

In Today's News

Retail Imports to See Lowest Annual Total in Four Years

The National Retail Federation says June retail imports at U.S. ports were down 9.4% from the year-ago month and at a four-year low.

Why it matters: Conventional wisdom amidst the coronavirus pandemic is that storage operations, the kind that investors may buy directly or in real estate investment trusts (REITs), are more pandemic recession-proof than, say, retail. But if it's retail stuff they're storing, maybe not so much.

Hotel Robots Get Second Life As Industry Adapts to COVID-19

Makers of robots who deliver room service and clean the rooms themselves see opportunity in the human hands-off approach the machines can bring to hotels.

Why it matters: Hotels have been particularly hard hit by the pandemic. Anything that can help guests feel safer, it would seem, would have to help. And there must be other commercial real estate (CRE) uses, too, for these robots and the creative property manager who might like one.

Suburbs Drawing Most Homebuyer Interest in 3 Years of Tracking

The big listing site says it's now seeing more online searches in the suburbs than at any time since it began tracking metro-level search data in 2017.

Why it matters: In the second quarter, 51% of views from urban residents in the 100 largest markets were of suburban properties. Remote work is freeing many people from having to be near downtown, which has ramifications for homebuyers and investors in both areas.

Today on Millionacres

This Old House, on the Cheap

Millionacres' Laura Agadoni looks at what may be a new trend for millennials: the "cheap, old house movement."

Why it matters: Beat-up old places offer a better chance for a deal for homebuyers facing a lot of competition without a lot of cash on their own. Investors who can find the right deal in the right location can find themselves with a new market for a favorable flip.

Remodeling Demand Rises, and So May Investors' Costs

New data from home design platform Houzz shows sharply growing demand for remodeling and design pros.

Why it matters: As Millionacres' Aly Yale points out in this piece, these are the people investors turn to when they can't or don't want to do it themselves. That price tag may be higher than expected and rising fast.

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