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Stevens: CRE Markets Showing 'Strength,' 'Resiliency'

Sorohan, Mike
SAN DIEGO--Mortgage Bankers Association President and CEO David Stevens said signs point positively in 2013 for the commercial real estate/multifamily housing industry.

“We anticipate another year of steady growth for the commercial and multifamily business sectors,” Stevens said here at the MBA 23rd Annual Commercial Real Estate Finance/Multifamily Housing Convention & Expo. “Production is growing ever-stronger and a wide variety of capital sources are lending. We have put delinquencies in the rearview mirror and are looking ahead to new originations and growth.”

Stevens said five years out of the recession, the multifamily market is strong and the economic recovery is trickling through to the commercial properties. This week, MBA reported commercial/multifamily delinquencies fell in 2012, while originations rose; MBA said the delinquency rate on bank-held loans is at its lowest level since the beginning of 2009 and the delinquency rate for loans held in commercial mortgage-backed securities, while still elevated, continued to stabilize. 

“You all know more than most just how fragile this ecosystem truly is,” Stevens said. “When one part of the system is off balance, it affects everyone. In a down economy, consumers don’t spend and businesses won’t grow. Companies won’t hire and expand their office space.  Neighborhoods and the developing communities and businesses around them won’t thrive.”
Stevens noted since the recession, restructuring in the commercial and multifamily sectors and has contributed to the positive growth environment. While commercial mortgage backed securities issuance hasn’t approached its 2007 peak, issuance is expected to rise from $45 billion in 2012 to $65 billion in 2013 and $75 billion in 2014. 
“This is proof positive of the strength, agility and resilience of our industry,” Stevens said.

Stevens outlined MBA’s priorities for commercial/multifamily advocacy in the coming year:

• Strengthening the future of the multifamily housing market;

• Promoting the continued revitalization of the commercial mortgage-backed securities market;
• Addressing regulatory capital regimes for portfolio lenders;

• Promoting policies that support the operational effectiveness and efficiency of commercial financing; and

• Supporting a legislative and regulatory environment that strengthens investment in commercial and multifamily real estate

“As your voice in Washington, D.C., we advocate for an atmosphere for growing your business in policymaking and judicial rulings,” Stevens said. “We’re fighting this fight so you don’t have to.”