Posted by: Bob Wiley | October 18, 2017

About 40% of US Land Is at Risk for Sinkholes

The U.S. Geological Survey estimates that 35 to 40% of all the land in the U.S. is susceptible to sinkholes. While giant sinkholes often make news, smaller sinkholes are also exceptionally costly to homeowners. In 2009, the average sinkhole claim cost Florida insurance companies over $86,000 for cracked driveways, walls, and foundations. In that year, insurance companies paid out over $97 million.

People invest significant resources in their homes and vehicles. Mortgage companies require homeowners to protect their assets with suitable home insurance policies, but most do not require the inclusion of sinkhole insurance. Sinkholes have the potential to destroy homes and property, but because they are relatively rare, most people never consider; how real that threat could be for their family. Sinkholes are unpredictable, but you can protect your property with a sinkhole insurance policy.

Sinkholes in America

  • Most sinkholes in America occur in Florida
  • Pennsylvania has the second-highest rate of sinkholes
  • The ability to purchase sinkhole insurance is guaranteed in FL and PA
  • The largest sinkhole in the U.S. is the Texas Devil’s Sinkhole in Rocksprings, TX; it has a 50-foot wide opening and drops 350 feet into the ground

What Is a Sinkhole?

Sinkholes are catastrophic phenomena that occur all over the world. They are natural depressions or holes that form in the earth’s crust. Sinkholes can result from both natural and man-made causes.

The occurance of sinkholes can be a dramatic event that swallows up cars, roadways and even homes. Sinkholes can also cause merely minor depressions in the earth’s surface, barely visible but highly destructive. Some sinkholes happen gradually over time while others are sudden and disastrous. A ground-shift of as little as a couple inches can be enough to severely damage the structure of a home or building, rendering it unsafe for habitation.

What Causes Sinkholes?

Sinkholes can have a variety of underlying causes. Some are natural and some are man-made.

  • Natural causes: Sinkholes can be caused by the after-effects of earthquakes, erosions in the earth’s surface or the presence of excess groundwater. Although excessive rains and flooding can sometimes cause these disasters, there is evidence that extreme droughts can have the same effect. Natural sinkholes usually show early signs of erosion.
  • Man-made causes: Sinkholes can sometimes be precipitated by man-made forces that weaken underlying layers in the earth’s crust. Some common causes include excessive drilling, mining, construction and even lots of heavy traffic.  Some suspect that hydraulic fracture mining (“fracking”) may have this effect as well. Mine subsidence in abandoned coal mines over which development has occurred can also cause these catastrophes.
Posted by: Bob Wiley | October 6, 2017

Spotlight on Listing!! Motivated Seller – Bring an Offer!!


Commercial Land Available For Sale in desirable East Penn. Just under 1/2 acre commercial lot perfect for destination business. Current approval for a 2 story building in footprint of existing building. (Existing building is a teardown.)

4302 Chestnut Street, Upper Milford Twp.


Posted by: Bob Wiley | October 5, 2017

The 5 Types of Commercial Real Estate

To help manage the colossal scope of their industry, commercial brokers and investors have split it into five types of commercial real estate. Below, I’ll talk about what these different categories include and what to look for when investing in them.


office types of commercial real estate

Office buildings range in size from the small suburban office parks to the towering skyscrapers in downtown New York City. To help differentiate between them, the category is broken down further into Class A, Class B and Class C buildings.

Class A is the premiere, cream-of-the-crop office building. They usually include high quality designs, a coveted location and above-average rent.

Class B is the average, everyday office building. They compete for a wide range of tenants and have a reasonable rent for the market.

Finally, Class C buildings are beginning to show their wear. They offer functional, if outdated, workspaces at below average rents.

Office real estate is influenced by factors like the local economy and the region’s industry focus – financial and technology companies demand a lot of space. The leasing companies may require special clauses in their contracts like the right to contiguous space.


industrial types of commercial real estate

Industrial buildings are usually located outside of urban areas and along transportation routes. They are separated into four different classes: heavy manufacturing, light assembly, bulk warehouses, and flex industrial (a mix of industrial and office spaces.)

Manufacturing buildings are often outfitted specifically to a single tenant and may require extensive remodeling if a new one moves in. Warehouse are more generic and can be filled fairly quickly should your current tenant move out. Industrial buildings tend to have long leases meaning, over time, rent may fall behind the market.


retail types of commercial real estate

Retail is a huge category that includes buildings like malls, shopping centers, restaurants, big box stores and more.

Before purchasing retail real estate, it’s important to consider its location and the state of the local economy. Both of these will play a big role in the success of your investment. As with industrial buildings, retail spaces generally have long leases that may fall behind current market rent prices, and new tenants may require extensive remodeling to keep with their brand identity.

Read More

Source:  My NOI

Posted by: Bob Wiley | September 28, 2017

Valley shows 9.2M square feet in industrial growth

By Brian Pedersen, September 27, 2017 at 12:01 PM
The Lehigh Valley Planning Commission released Build LV, its annual development report today. Participating in a panel discussion about the data are, from left: Becky Bradley, executive director of LVPC; Justin Porembo, CEO of Greater Lehigh Valley Realtors; and Mike Alderman, vice president and Pennsylvania market officer for Liberty Property Trust.

The Lehigh Valley Planning Commission released Build LV, its annual development report today. Participating in a panel discussion about the data are, from left: Becky Bradley, executive director of LVPC; Justin Porembo, CEO of Greater Lehigh Valley Realtors; and Mike Alderman, vice president and Pennsylvania market officer for Liberty Property Trust. – (Photo / Brian Pedersen)

Driven by increases in e-commerce and proximity to major roads, industrial development proved to be a dominating force in 2016 in the Lehigh Valley.

And Berks County could be next.

According to data from Build LV, the Lehigh Valley Planning Commission’s annual development report revealed this morning, industrial growth showed a sharp spike in 2016, said Becky Bradley, executive director of LVPC.

Approved industrial floor space increased 168 percent from 3.4 million square feet in 2015 to 9.2 million square feet, hitting its highest level in the past 10 years, she reported.

Bradley shared details of the report at an event hosted by the Greater Lehigh Valley Chamber of Commerce at SteelStacks at ArtsQuest in Bethlehem, focusing on land development plans for commercial, industrial and residential projects in Lehigh and Northampton counties. Last year, LVPC reviewed 429 plans.

Each year, the report examines planning issues and identifies trends in development, taking into account updated data on population growth and its connection to real estate.

“Industrial is the leader of the pack,” Bradley said.

Nonresidential activity boomed in 2016, driven by industrial development that was highlighted by massive buildings, some totaling more than 1 million square feet of space, the report said.

“We are going to have more freight coming into the Valley,” Bradley said.

The warehouse projects now driving nonresidential development are generating employment largely at the urban fringes of the Valley, which creates challenges to providing adequate transportation service and reducing vehicle traffic, the report said.

A panel discussion explored some of these issues and trends in further detail.

Joseph Fitzpatrick, founder and shareholder of Fitzpatrick Lentz & Bubba, served as the moderator, with Bradley; Justin Porembo, CEO of Greater Lehigh Valley Realtors; and Mike Alderman, vice president and Pennsylvania market officer for Liberty Property Trust, offering insights.


“The market is in a very healthy state,” Alderman said, referring to the industrial market. “This is the best market I’ve ever seen. The vacancy rate is less than 5 percent.”

Since the Great Recession, the Valley’s industrial market was also one of the first markets to have data to show rent recovery, absorption and demand for space, he said.

“We are seeing a lot of growth right now because of pent-up demand,” Alderman said.

There’s good opportunity for continued growth if developers can continue to deliver smart product and build good buildings, Alderman said.

The next wave of industrial development will push into Berks County, Alderman said. This would create a situation where people living in Allentown would be commuting to Berks County to work in these facilities, which creates transportation issues.

Bradley noted that the LVPC is starting to see a spike of people commuting from New Jersey into the Valley to work, and the numbers are starting to grow.

Naturally, the growth in the warehouse and logistics sector will continue to affect the region’s transportation infrastructure.

“When industrial development is at its best, you put the right building in the right community,” Alderman said. “We try to understand the impacts associated with the building. TIFs [tax increment financing programs] are the best workaround.”

While much of the industrial development is for warehousing and logistics, manufacturers are increasingly seeking smaller sites for their facilities. However, Alderman said, it’s been a struggle to get these facilities built.

“It’s hard to justify the return on investment, so you can’t get the approval to do it,” Alderman said.

While the community often wants them, it’s difficult to get investors to provide the financing, he added.

However, they often lease existing spaces. When shipping giant Uline moved out of its four buildings in Upper Macungie Township into two newly constructed sites to consolidate operations, Liberty Property Trust filled the vacated spaces with four companies, three of which were manufacturers or related to manufacturing, Alderman said.


The rise of e-commerce will continue to reshape the local retail and commercial landscape in many unpredictable ways, the report said.

“We still have population growth, we are adding density. There’s a need for more services,” Bradley said.

This is one of the reasons why retail brick-and-mortar sites will continue to be built, even with the rise of online shopping.


New apartment complexes have dominated the housing market and continued to gain momentum in 2016, particularly in the cities and some of the region’s townships. In 2016, municipalities approved 1,182 apartments, which more than doubled the 2015 total and hit a 10-year-high, the report said.

“This would be the third year in a row where apartments outpaced all other types of development,” Bradley said.

Single-family housing development continues to be slow, and significantly less land is being used for housing development, the report said.

“Since last spring, we are at about 41 percent inventory,” Porembo said, whose trade organization represents more than 2,500 Realtors in Carbon, Lehigh and Northampton counties. “Our findings are that we need more single-family housing. We are at about a 50-year low in home ownership nationally.

“There are some nuances and barriers with getting home ownership. Usually at this time, we see a cooling down of the housing market, but we are seeing a pretty good run on the market.”

Porembo said his concern is that inventory is a major issue and the amount of construction is not keeping pace with the inventory. It’s been a seller’s dream but a buyer’s nightmare, he added.

These trends offer an opportunity for municipalities to plan for more compact residential development patterns, with a focus on revitalizing the cities and boroughs and reducing vehicle traffic, the report said.

Posted by: Bob Wiley | July 27, 2017

The 10 Best Markets for Multifamily Investment

Donna Mitchell | Jun 22, 2017

multifamily-TS-1 (1)

Taking the changing environment into account, we took a look at the multifamily markets that offer some of the best opportunities for institutional investors.

By the end of the first quarter, a number of key apartment market fundamentals had begun to soften from very tight levels, according to research from real estate services firm JLL. Effective rent growth, for instance, slowed by 160 basis points nationally, to 3.0 percent.

Experts point to higher construction deliveries as the culprit. Many of the markets in this roundup experienced this. Higher supply put upward pressure on vacancies, which hit 5.0 percent, a year-over-year change of 10 basis points.

Taking the changing environment into account, we took a second look at the multifamily markets that offer some of the best opportunities for institutional investors.




Posted by: Bob Wiley | June 19, 2017

Featured Home

3601 Cobblestone Ln

3601 Cobblestone Ln., Whitehall

Must See! Gorgeous corner lot in Whitehall School District with open concept floor plan. Features modern Kitchen with hardwood floors, new appliances (refrigerator is negotiable) and an eat-in Dining area. A nice size Living Room with new carpet, a working fireplace and allows walk-out access to the back deck and wide open back yard. First floor also features a carpeted Family Room, Dining Room with brand new tile flooring, half bath and entry to attached 2 car garage. Second level has 4 Bedrooms, the main full Bath and Laundry Room. Don’t forget about the Master Suite with full Master Bath including a double-vanity sink, bathtub and separate stand-up shower. Master suite also includes large walk-in closet. Basement is full but unfinished. The home comes with a brand new water softener and water heater that is just a year old. This one is too good to pass up so schedule your showing today and bring in an offer!  $319,500

Posted by: Bob Wiley | June 12, 2017

Home Maintenance Tips


Whether it’s spring, summer, fall or winter, it’s important to take the necessary steps to keep your home standing tall every day

Gutter Clutter

It’s always important to make sure that the gutters on your roof are cleared, but it’s especially necessary during the autumn months.  During this time, trees begin to change and leaves begin to fall, which means your gutters can easily become clogged.  If this happens, it could prevent rainwater from properly draining and may even result in damage.  It’s also important to check your gutters throughout the year for a buildup of ice, dirt and other elements that may create a blockage.

Shingle Care

If your roof has shingles, you probably already know that spring is the best time to check for damage.  After the winter is over, it’s important to check your roof for any damage that may have resulted from heavy snow and/or a buildup of ice.  In addition, it’s essential that you check for damaged shingles after a storm.  If you notice one or more that needs repaired or replacing, choose a day with no rain in the forecast.  Otherwise, you will be dealing with a roof repair on a slippery surface.

Heating & Cooling How-To

It’s important to maintain both your heating and cooling units to ensure their longevity.  One way of doing this is to replace filters annually or earlier if needed.  This not only helps to keep your home’s air cleaner, but it also protects your heating or cooling unit from malfunctioning due to improper filter maintenance.

How To Spot Roof Leaks

If you suspect a leak but aren’t quite sure what to look for, you’re not alone.  Although some signs, such as water spots on the wall, ceiling or floor, are obvious, not every indication is that clear.  Possible signs that you may have a leak include a weak floor or damp carpet.  If you detect either of these warning signs, consult a professional roofing expert to help find the problem and correct it as quickly as possible.  If left untreated, a roof leak could damage the structure of the home by weakening the frame or, in some cases, even creating a problem with mold and moisture buildup.

Detector Detective

It’s important to check your smoke detectors regularly to ensure that they are working properly and ready to alert your family if needed.  Always make sure that the batteries in each unit are working and replaced on a regular basis.

Posted by: Bob Wiley | June 9, 2017

Featured Listing


1729 W. Tilghman St., Allentown

1 Story Commercial Building with 1,348 SF of space available. Previously used as a clothing boutique, however, could be used for a variety of uses. This would make a great Office space with reception area, open space, 2 private offices & restrooms. Other uses could include medical office – such as a Chiropractor, Beauty/Nail Salon, Spa, Retail space, etc. On-site parking is available. High traffic area with surrounding commercial buildings.  $17/SF Gross Lease

Posted by: Bob Wiley | June 7, 2017

Commercial Real Estate Loans

Commercial Real Estate Loans


Commercial real estate (CRE) is income-producing real estate that is used solely for business purposes, such as retail centers, office complexes, hotels, and apartments. Financing – including the acquisition, development, and construction of these properties – is typically accomplished through commercial real estate loans: mortgage loans secured by liens on commercial, rather than residential, property.

Just as with residential loans, banks and independent lenders are actively involved in making loans on commercial real estate. Also, insurance companies, pension funds, private investors and other capital sources, including the U.S. Small Business Administration’s 504 Loan program, make loans for commercial real estate.

Here, we take a look at commercial real estate loans: how they differ from residential loans, their characteristics and what lenders look for.

Individuals vs. Entities

While residential mortgages are typically made to individual borrowers, commercial real estate loans are often made to business entities (e.g., corporations, developers, partnerships, funds, and trusts). These entities are often formed for the specific purpose of owning commercial real estate.

An entity may not have a financial track record or any credit history, in which case the lender may require the principals or owners of the entity to guarantee the loan. This provides the lender with an individual (or group of individuals) with a credit history and/or financial track record – and from whom they can recover in the event of loan default. If this type of guaranty is not required by the lender, and the property is the only means of recovery in the event of loan default, the loan is called a non-recourse loan, meaning that the lender has no recourse against anyone or anything other than the property.

Loan Repayment Schedules

A residential mortgage is a type of amortized loan in which the debt is repaid in regular installments over a period of time. The most popular residential mortgage product is the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage.

Read more: Commercial Real Estate Loans | Investopedia
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Posted by: Bob Wiley | June 1, 2017

3 Great Investment Properties in Parker Ford, PA

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