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Understanding Commercial Real Estate: Just How Different from Housing Is It?

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  • Joseph Gyourko

Abstract

Recent sharp declines in owner-occupied housing prices naturally raise the question of whether something similar will happen to income-producing properties. It already has based on the nearly 60% decline in the share prices of publicly-traded, commercial property firms from their peak in early 2007. The core model of spatial equilibrium in urban economics suggests this should not be a surprise, as it shows that both real estate sectors are driven by common fundamentals, which should make them perform similarly. On the other hand, stronger limits to arbitrage in housing suggest wider swings in prices unrelated to fundamentals are feasible in that property sector. The data find many more similarities than differences across the two real estate sectors. The simple correlation between appreciation rates on owner-occupied housing and commercial real estate is nearly 40%. Both sectors also exhibit similar time series patterns in their price appreciation, with there being persistence across individual years and mean reversion over longer periods. Commercial real estate capital structure looks to be quite weak due to high leverage combined with strong mean reversion in prices. The aggregate loan-to-value ratio on income-producing properties is about 75%. Estimated mean reversion in price appreciation of at least 25% over relatively short horizons suggests that normal change from the recent peak will leave little or no equity on average to cushion against any future negative shocks.

Suggested Citation

  • Joseph Gyourko, 2009. "Understanding Commercial Real Estate: Just How Different from Housing Is It?," NBER Working Papers 14708, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:14708
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    Cited by:

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    2. Markus Hertrich, 2019. "A Novel Housing Price Misalignment Indicator for Germany," German Economic Review, Verein für Socialpolitik, vol. 20(4), pages 759-794, November.
    3. Michal Hlaváček & Ondřej Novotný & Marek Rusnák, 2016. "Analýza cen komerčních nemovitostí v zemích střední Evropy [Analysis of the Commercial Property Prices in the Central European Countries]," Politická ekonomie, Prague University of Economics and Business, vol. 2016(1), pages 3-18.
    4. Aizenman, Joshua & Jinjarak, Yothin, 2009. "Current account patterns and national real estate markets," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 66(2), pages 75-89, September.
    5. Benoît Schmutz & Modibo Sidibé, 2016. "Frictional spatial equilibrium," Working Papers 2016-29, Center for Research in Economics and Statistics.
    6. Justin Trogdon & Donatus Ekwueme & Sujha Subramanian & Wesley Crouse, 2014. "Economies of scale in federally-funded state-organized public health programs: results from the National Breast and Cervical Cancer Early Detection Programs," Health Care Management Science, Springer, vol. 17(4), pages 321-330, December.
    7. Michal Hlavacek & Ondrej Novotny & Marek Rusnak, 2014. "Office Property in Central European Countries," Occasional Publications - Chapters in Edited Volumes, in: CNB Financial Stability Report 2013/2014, chapter 0, pages 148-155, Czech National Bank.
    8. Bednarek, Peter & te Kaat, Daniel Marcel & Ma, Chang & Rebucci, Alessandro, 2019. "Capital flows, real estate, and local cycles: Evidence from German cities, banks, and firms," Discussion Papers 45/2019, Deutsche Bundesbank.
    9. Feler, Leo & Senses, Mine Zeynep, 2016. "Trade Shocks and the Provision of Local Public Goods," IZA Discussion Papers 10231, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    10. Zhenyu Gao & Michael Sockin & Wei Xiong, 2020. "Learning about the Neighborhood," NBER Working Papers 26907, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    11. Zhou, Zhengyi, 2018. "Housing market sentiment and intervention effectiveness: Evidence from China," Emerging Markets Review, Elsevier, vol. 35(C), pages 91-110.
    12. Dennis Schoenmaker & Arno Vlist, 2015. "On real estate development activity: the relationship between commercial and residential real estate markets," Letters in Spatial and Resource Sciences, Springer, vol. 8(3), pages 219-232, November.
    13. Qing Bai & Lu Zhu, 2018. "The Effects of Industry Specific and Local Economic Factors on Credit Default Swap Spreads: Evidence from REITs," Journal of Financial Services Research, Springer;Western Finance Association, vol. 54(3), pages 293-321, December.
    14. Anna Grodecka‐Messi, 2019. "Subprime borrowers, securitization and the transmission of business cycles," Canadian Journal of Economics/Revue canadienne d'économique, John Wiley & Sons, vol. 52(4), pages 1600-1654, November.
    15. Christian Buerger, 2020. "The Influence of Finance Policies on Charter School Supply Decisions in Five States," Public Budgeting & Finance, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 40(2), pages 44-74, June.
    16. Jack Corgel & Crocker Liu & Robert White, 2015. "Determinants of Hotel Property Prices," The Journal of Real Estate Finance and Economics, Springer, vol. 51(3), pages 415-439, October.
    17. Juan Carlos Cuestas, 2019. "Co-movement between residential and commercial housing prices: Evidence from a new database," Working Papers 2019/11, Economics Department, Universitat Jaume I, Castellón (Spain).
    18. J. Scott Davis & Kevin X. D. Huang & Ayse Sapci, 2020. "Imperfect substitution in real estate markets and the effect of housing demand on corporate investment," Vanderbilt University Department of Economics Working Papers 20-00002, Vanderbilt University Department of Economics.
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    20. William G. Hardin & Xiaoquan Jiang & Zhonghua Wu, 2017. "Inflation Illusion, Expertise and Commercial Real Estate," The Journal of Real Estate Finance and Economics, Springer, vol. 55(3), pages 345-369, October.
    21. Zeno Adams & Roland Füss & Felix Schindler, 2015. "The Sources of Risk Spillovers among U.S. REITs: Financial Characteristics and Regional Proximity," Real Estate Economics, American Real Estate and Urban Economics Association, vol. 43(1), pages 67-100, March.
    22. Patrick van Roy & Gaia Barbic & Anne Koban & Charalampos Kouratzoglou, 2017. "Use of credit registers to monitor financial stability risks: A cross-country application to sectoral risk," IFC Bulletins chapters, in: Bank for International Settlements (ed.), Data needs and Statistics compilation for macroprudential analysis, volume 46, Bank for International Settlements.
    23. Levitin, Adam & Wachter, Susan, 2012. "Explaining the Housing Bubble," MPRA Paper 41920, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    24. Lyons, Paul & Nevin, Ciarán & Shaw, Frances, 2019. "Real-estate concentration in the Irish banking system," Financial Stability Notes 4/FS/19, Central Bank of Ireland.

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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • R0 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - General
    • R21 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Household Analysis - - - Housing Demand
    • R31 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Real Estate Markets, Spatial Production Analysis, and Firm Location - - - Housing Supply and Markets

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