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Ever wonder how an appraiser or bank views your purchase? This week Cory welcomes Thomas Wieckowski from Campbell & Pound Commercial Appraisers to break down the appraisal process, how to value risk, and how a bank views your property. A must listen to episode if you are thinking of buying or have purchased commercial real estate to ensure you get the best value for your dollar. Thomas sheds some great insight for your next commercial purchase and what to consider during the offer process!
Please tell us about yourself.
I was born in Ottawa and moved to Calgary as a kid. We then moved to the Lower Mainland in 1988 and have been here ever since. I studied economics at UBC and have been in commercial real estate consulting and appraisal for more than 15 years.
I fell into it. I was working at a bank in property insurance and had a friend who was working with Campbell and Pound. I looked at his lifestyle and was jealous of his freedom and flexibility. So I took a leap of faith and have been there ever since.
What is the goal of an appraisal?
It’s really to provide an unbiased, over the fence take of a question you’re trying to solve, most often a point-in-time valuation. Everybody involved in the transaction is a biased party because they have a financial stake in the project. The appraiser is supposed to give an unbiased assurance that the end product is commensurate with what the parties are saying.
We often get a call after there’s been an accepted offer. The appraiser is reviewing the market evidence and the pending contract to give assurance that it is, in fact, a market-value transaction.
Do you work from the agreed-upon purchase price?
The appraiser must give their opinion of any pending activity on the property. So reviewing the terms of the contract is a part of the process. But there are circumstances where parties want to have a completely unbiased view of what the property is worth. So I’ve done it both ways, but I’m usually reviewing a pending contract.
Where do you work?
My office works from Chilliwack to Whistler and we occasionally go into the Interior.
How do you stay on top of the local markets?
It’s more difficult in commercial than residential to specialize in a contained geographic area or product type, just because the number of deals is smaller. But it is important that the appraiser has experience with the property in question. With the Appraisal Institute of Canada, you develop a methodology that allows you to appraise a pretty wide scope of products. It’s not as difficult as you may think to keep your finger on the pulse of the local market.
What is the process and timeline?
Every property and engagement is unique but in general, it starts with a Letter of Engagement. That outlines the expectations for the assignment and the intended use of the report. You are defining what is happening, how long it will take and the costs from the get go. From there, you coordinate a property viewing and do a site inspection. The site inspection is only a small part of what’s happening; 95% of the work is sitting in front of spreadsheets and reviewing market evidence.
Typically, it takes anywhere from 5-10 business days for the delivery of a finished commercial appraisal product. Larger engagement can take up to 4-5 months.
How does the process differ by product type?
The process is essentially very similar, but the nuances of the analysis will differ. Every type of property has its own quirks. You may have to apply special treatments to larger or multi-use properties that you wouldn’t need on smaller and simpler properties.
If I’m renovating and repositioning a building, how does that factor into the appraisal?
This is a pretty common framework for appraisals. You would get two scenarios of valuation: 1) as is and 2) an estimate of potential value if a series of assumptions are realized. It’s pretty straightforward to provide both of these values, but it’s important to remember none of these assumptions have happened yet. The end-user must understand the scenario they’re dealing with and decide if they want to assume the risk.
If you’re planning on a value-add deal, the best thing you can do is have concise information before you get an appraisal report.
How do you evaluate pre-sale properties?
You’re looking at the pending contract and the developer’s proposed specifications and giving an estimate of value as if everything is complete. If you show up and things are halfway done, you give an estimate of what it would be worth if it was finished.
Are there common red flags that you see?
There can be so many things that tip you off. Over the years, you get a feel for something funny going on before you even visit the property. The most common thing I see is contracts that are not arm’s length. When you get that funny feeling, you start digging more closely and may end up discovering the property isn’t as described.
Who is your obligation to at the end of the day?
The obligation is to the client. In commercial real estate, the borrower ends up paying for the appraisal and is named as the client. But the intended user of the appraisal report is the bank. However, the bank is not the client and doesn’t have control over the appraisal process.
How does it work if a pre-sale is 2-3 years out?
Typically the appraisal process is initiated nearer to the closing date. Most lenders won’t accept an appraisal that is two years old. You will need to update the appraisal or commission a new one.
If you were buying right now, what would you be looking at?
The most astonishing gains that I have seen have been in land. That gives you maximum opportunity for appreciation. It’s been impressive to see how far values have come, most obviously in industrial land.
How many times have you seen someone write an offer for $1 million and you have to deliver the $500,000 appraisal?
It does happen and it’s never a fun conversation. I don’t ever feel comfortable being part of an engagement with information that I don’t think is true. Sometimes you have to be clear that the price is the result of a red hot market. You want to be clear about how far someone is stretching.
Giving bad news doesn’t happen that often – maybe once every couple of months. Sometimes people don’t take it well and sometimes they’re very appreciative.
Cory: Your lender gives you a loan based on the lesser of the two values: the contract or the appraisal. So if the appraisal value is lower, the bank is only going to give you a loan based on that lower value. It’s up to you as the buyer to come up with the rest of the money to hit the contract price. That’s why appraisals are such an important part of the process.
That’s why subject-free offers are so dangerous. You usually want to see 30-60 days of due diligence. But that can be the difference between a competitive offer and not. It’s not easy when the market is moving quickly.
How would a newcomer to commercial real estate establish value?
We don’t find most of the information on an MLS board like residential appraisers would. In commercial, you have a lower participation rate. We have specialized databases that track commercial sales exclusively. In addition, a commercial appraisal will involve primary research. The scope of market research will come from a variety of sources, which is the main difference between residential and commercial appraisals.
It seems you can’t establish value without a good broker and appraiser. Is that correct?
For sure. Your first contact should be with an experienced commercial broker who knows everything about the asset. You can’t walk in blind or trust the residential realtor in your neighbourhood. You need someone to help you with the deal who knows what they’re doing.
What is your advice for newcomers to commercial real estate?
Getting tripped up over due diligence and trying to cut corners over a few thousand dollars is going to be a poor strategy for most people.
Find out more: www.aicanada.ca & campbell-pound.com
Contact: [email protected]
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Conall Barr of CBarr Inspections discusses the importance of a commercial building inspection before you remove subjects on your next purchase and how it can save a buyer hundreds of thousands of dollars in deferred maintenance costs.
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Thomas Wieckowski, Associate Appraiser of Campbell & Pound, discusses what’s in store for 2023 and a lookback at the past 24 months. Thomas walks us through what the appraisal industry has seen over the past 2+ years and gives his thoughts on what makes a good opportunity.
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Happy Holidays, Happy Hanukkah and Merry Christmas from all of us at the VCREP and thanks for listening in 2022. As the podcast continues to grow week-over-week we have some amazing guests lined up for 2023 which is shaping up to be our biggest year yet. Thanks for all the continued support and we look forward to some amazing shows in 2023!
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Daniel Eagling from Cairn Homes in Ireland discusses how inflation, interest rates, and supply chains are affecting their market. Dan walks us through the challenges their market and the neighbouring European markets are having, the strain on supplies, and the tightening of the rental market heading into 2023.
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How are the current economic challenges affecting the development industry? Jordan MacDonald, CEO of fabric living, opens up about the challenges the industry has faced with rising inflation and interest rates, how fabric has navigated the current economy, and how he and his team have continued to grow and acquire assets during this time.
Did you know that business sales and acquisitions fall under the commercial real estate umbrella? Chris van Vliet from WWC's Fraser Valley office breaks down how you buy or sell a small business. He talks us through the timelines, the conditions, and some things you need to be cautious of when navigating through the process.
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Impact Commercial's Co-founder and Managing Partner Alan Haigh unpacks what has happened over the past couple of months in both Canada and the US, how the bond market could predict what will happen to interest rates, and when this madness will end.
As the world continues to cope with rising inflation and interest rates, international commercial real estate investor Peter Leung tells us how his portfolio is (or isn’t) affected and what markets have bounced back quicker than others. Peter also discusses what BC markets he likes and where he is looking to grow his holdings.
As interest rates continue to push upwards, Harry Jones of William Wright Commercial Victoria discusses the Greater Victoria market that just doesn't slow down regardless of market conditions, and walks through all the asset classes and how they have performed over the past year and what is to come as interest rates continue to rise.
Ever wonder why or even how your property taxes go up every year? Clayton Olson of Altus Group discusses the metrics behind your commercial property taxes. He walks through how these costs are calculated, why they increase, and what you can do if you disagree with your tax amount.
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The ongoing debate on Vancouver Island right now is Victoria or Nanaimo? Robin Kelley of the Groupe Denux, one of Vancouver Island’s long-standing families of real estate, provides insight on both markets and how each market has fared over the years, and unpacks which asset classes he thinks will continue to grow.
Rod MacKay of WWC’s Vancouver office discusses the most unpredictable year we’ve had in real estate yet. From faster than expected rising interest rates, to record breaking month-over-month inflation, to worldwide supply chain issues… 2022 has been anything but predictable.
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Bronwyn Scrivens from Omada Commercial Real Estate in Edmonton discusses Alberta’s growing industrial market. She shares how Alberta is receiving the halo effect from BC’s tight vacancy rates and staggering acquisition costs, and what tenants and developers are now looking into when it comes to Alberta vs BC.
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On a national and provincial level, one of the most exciting real estate markets has been Victoria. Mayor of Victoria, Lisa Helps, unpacks how Victoria got to where it is today, the goals she has accomplished in her eight years as mayor, and unveils what’s in store for BC’s capital city.
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Mike Kozakowski, founder of Citified Media and citified.ca, a comprehensive resource for researching new-build homes and commercial spaces on Vancouver Island, gives a glimpse into the years and years of new construction data Citified has tracked in the Greater Victoria area.
Sam Wilson, renowned host of the hugely popular podcast, How to Scale Commercial Real Estate, uncovers his roots in commercial investing, shares some mistakes he has made along the way, and talks us through what a good deal looks like to him.
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Leonard Krog, Mayor of Nanaimo, shares some great insight on all the new and upcoming projects and what the future holds for the port city. Plus, we dive into the highly anticipated and forthcoming OCP for the downtown and surrounding areas.
Cory and the team are hitting the beach this week for a well deserved break. Next week we are back with another phenomenal episode. Stay tuned!
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Have you ever wanted to make the money real estate developers do? Ravi Mann of PROPetual REIT and the Isle of Mann Property Group discusses the exciting new investment opportunities that can get anyone through the real estate investment door for as little as $5,000.
Have you ever wanted to make the money real estate developers do? Ravi Mann of PROPetual REIT and the Isle of Mann Property Group discusses the exciting new investment opportunities that can get anyone through the real estate investment door for as little as $5,000.
As Canada and the world continues to battle with Omicron, supply chains are challenged and the Bank of Canada surprisingly holds rates. Doug Porter, Chief Economist & Managing Director of BMO Financial Group, shares his thoughts on what’s next for the economy and his prediction for interest rates.
Ever wonder which commercial asset class has the lowest cap rate but offers the most stable returns? Marianne DeCotiis, a multifamily specialist with WWC, breaks down the multifamily asset class, sharing how it’s funded, how the leases are government regulated, and plenty more!
Over the past 20 months, most industries have seen a lot of change and the law industry is no different. Tim Lack of Redpoint Law discusses the ever-changing world of the legal side of commercial real estate and shares insight on how the pandemic has changed how commercial real estate is leased, sold, and financed.
Over the past 20+ months, we have heard about supply chain issues, labour shortages, and logistical challenges, and this all has a direct impact on the construction of real estate in the province. Owen Lecky of Wales McLelland unwraps the issues that have been affecting our real estate market.
Do you own a property with lots of equity that has built up over the years? Alan Haigh of Impact Commercial Group, one of BC’s leaders in commercial mortgages, explains how to tap into that equity and turn one property into a thriving commercial portfolio without having to sell your asset.
Wishing our listeners a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!
From Keltic Development Canada, Steve Jedreicich, Senior VP of Development, and Andy Tam, Senior VP of Business Development, discuss their recent 27-acre acquisition in Richmond, which tops off this year as the biggest transaction of 2021 at a whopping $300,000,000!
This past year has bolstered some amazing results for those who invested in commercial real estate, and this week we’re going to give you the VCREP Top 5 Markets for 2022! Rod MacKay from WWC’s Vancouver office joins Cory to discuss which markets will be ones to watch heading into the new year.
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Ever wonder what makes Surrey so attractive for both businesses and families? Anita Huberman, CEO of the Surrey Board of Trade, discusses Canada’s next big major city, breaks down the economic drivers behind the massive growth, and shares what makes it attractive for so many developers.
Maxime Charron, President of LeadingAhead Energy, an industry-leading electric car charging solution provider, talks about how the impact that electric vehicles are having on society is causing more and more developers and commercial landlords to install EV car charging solutions on their properties.
It’s no secret downtown Vancouver has been slower than its pre-COVID form, but is it as bad as other cities? Nolan Marshall, CEO of the Downtown Vancouver Business Improvement Association (DVBIA), discusses what’s next for downtown Vancouver and how things have fared over the pandemic.
Did you find the perfect commercial property to invest in, but you’re not sure where or how to start? Matthew Dunnigan, commercial mortgage specialist from Impact Commercial Group, breaks down all the steps needed to acquire that commercial investment property you’ve always wanted.
Peter Leung, the Investorpreneur himself, who has amassed an international real estate portfolio in London, Vancouver, and Hong Kong, provides his insight on how to get started in commercial real estate and how commercial offers greater opportunities for investors who require funding.
So many commercial real estate deals happen off the MLS, so where do investors go for market data? Raymond Wong, Vice President, Data Operations of Altus Group, details why Altus is a one-stop shop when it comes to data and research in the world of commercial real estate across Canada.
Senior writer Frank O’Brien of Glacier Media, home of Business in Vancouver and Western Investor, shares where he sees the winners and losers in the post-COVID era. He also gives a sneak peek at the upcoming Best in BC, where he and his team predict the 5 best real estate markets in 2022.
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Strand Development’s President Mike Mackay discusses everything Langford, BC. With the recent acquisition of the former Langford Speedway, which encompasses over 80 acres of prime development land, the excitement of the Greater Vancouver Island industrial market just keeps growing.
Jeff Prete, President of Jima Cannabis, unpacks the impact the cannabis business has had on retail in Vancouver and throughout the province. Ever wonder how long it takes to get a store open, how much capital you need, and if the stores are even that profitable? The answer Jeff gives might surprise you.
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Impact Commercial’s Jon Switzer, owner occupier financial specialist, shows business owners how to unlock their revenues, enabling them to become their own landlord, and in some cases, with as little as 0% down including closing costs. Jon highlights the do’s and don’ts when purchasing real estate for your business.
Have you ever wondered how a property goes from an old house into a new multi-level condo building? From the years of approval and planning that takes place to the “not so big” profit margins developers work off of, Jordan MacDonald, CEO of Fabric Living, gives a first hand look at the development process in Vancouver.
Over the past year and a half, the world has seen many changes… but is the office space one of them? Drew Ratcliffe of And-Co, a new all-in-one, multi-level, office community, complete with a wellness studio, restaurant, and event space, shares his vision of what he feels the future of office space in Vancouver will look like.
There is no question the hospitality sector has been hit the hardest by the pandemic. Glowbal Group CEO Emad Yacoub, one of Vancouver’s most prominent restaurateurs, discusses the challenges the industry has had to overcome to survive and what the future of the business looks like.
Ever wonder about that 5′ x 5′ self storage unit that you rented for $110/month to store all that crap you never use? Pat Wood, formerly one of the authorities, if not THE authority, in self storage appraisals and consulting, discusses why this asset class has seen a huge run in the past couple of years.
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Ever wonder how an appraiser or bank views your purchase? Thomas Wieckowski from Campbell & Pound breaks down the appraisal process, how to value risk, and how a bank views your property. Thomas sheds some great insight for your next commercial purchase and what to consider during the offer process.
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Ever thought about buying commercial estate and thought it was impossible to qualify for financing? Put away the notepad and calculator as Alan Haigh, co-founder and managing partner of Impact Commercial, breaks down how to buy and invest in commercial real estate.
Have you ever wondered how commercial real estate works or better yet, what it even is? We got you covered with the launch of the Vancouver “Commercial” Real Estate Podcast hosted by Cory Wright. What asset classes fall within the commercial industry, where to buy, how to buy, and everything in between—Cory breaks down everything you need to know to get started.
For all the curious minds interested in commercial real estate investing, grab a coffee and pull up a chair because we have exclusive stories and tips from commercial real estate brokers, investors, developers, economists, urban planners, and everyone in-between. From the successes and failures to the motivations and lessons learned, the Vancouver Commercial Real Estate Podcast is your insight into commercial real estate in Vancouver, Victoria, Kelowna, and beyond.
What's the best real estate market to invest in? What are the commercial real estate asset classes and property types? Hosted by Cory Wright, founder of William Wright Commercial, and co-hosts Adam and Matt Scalena of the Vancouver Real Estate Podcast, our podcast opens the door to real estate investing for everyone from beginner investors to experienced real estate professionals. New episodes are released every Tuesday. Follow the Vancouver Commercial Real Estate Podcast on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts, or your favourite streaming platforms.
This communication is not intended to cause or induce breach of an existing agency agreement. E&OE: All information contained herein is from sources deemed reliable, and have no reason to doubt its accuracy; however, no guarantee or responsibility is assumed thereof, and it shall not form any part of future contracts. Properties are submitted subject to errors and omissions and all information should be carefully verified. All measurements quoted herein are approximate.
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