Fixing Commercial Real Estate Is Key for Recovery

The commercial real estate market is the “one domestic factor that keeps me up at night,” Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta President Dennis Lockhart told the Association for Financial Professionals meeting Monday in Orlando.

Lockhart told the group that $400 billion of commercial real estate refinancing was hanging over the market and could slow the country’s economic recovery, which he expects to be clearly underway in the second half of 2009.

 He also said he believed many of the predictions for the timing of the end of this downturn to be too pessimistic. “Economic forecasts will tend to be overly optimistic as the economy goes into a recession, but overly pessimistic as the economy comes out of recession and begins its expansion phase. Perhaps, we should take some comfort from that,” he said.

Source: Reuters News, Alister Bull

Maine: Why Not Buy an Old Stone Jail?

Anyone looking for security should check out the place just listed by Dawson Commercial Realty in Bangor, Maine.
It’s a roomy, brick and stone county jail in the middle of Skowhegan. Constructed in 1897, the 14,000 square-foot building is for sale for $200,000 and comes complete with razor-wire fencing. There are no zoning or permit-use restrictions, but Philip Roy, chairman of the Somerset County Commission, says only buyers with profit in mind should apply.
“I’d like to have it go back on the tax rolls of Skowhegan, and I’d also like to see it create jobs – ultimately, that’s what we’re looking for,” he says.
Source: The Associated Press