President and Founder at Madison International Realty
Tell us about a deal that did NOT go through this year and why it didn’t happen?
We have paused on numerous transactions across geographies this year given the complications which have arisen on underwriting — inflation, rising interest rates, expenses, and cap rate expansion. We seek to deploy equity in growth-oriented, inflation-protected asset classes with solid fundamentals with fixed-rate borrowing. We are constantly assessing risk/return.
Have you refinanced anything in 2022? How difficult/easy was it?
We have executed refinancing. Borrowing costs are rising, but quality assets are financeable.
There’s a lot of Class B and C office in NYC. If you could lay your hands on them at a really great price, what would you do with them?
We are not investing in such assets. We are not betting on the future of hybrid working.
What market outside of NYC do you like and why?
We like numerous Sunbelt markets and those that offer compelling live-work-play environments as well as favorable tax profiles.
There’s a midterm election this year. How closely are you following, and do you think the national political climate will have an effect in New York?
We follow politics closely. I’m hopeful a pivot is coming toward the middle as we all recognize the fractionalized nature of the political system and the necessity to come together. This will benefit New York.
How many days per week are you in the office?
Madison returned to the office in March 2021 and operates as a team five days per week. We are empathetic toward our colleagues’ individual situations but benefit from inclusion, mentorship and teamwork.
How many days per week are your tenants in the office?
We are broadly diversified across asset classes. As to office tenants, many have adopted some type of hybrid work schedule. Physical occupancies are 50 to 60 percent on average.
NYC apartment rents have reached never seen levels. How much further can it go? How does the housing squeeze play out?
NYC apartment rental growth will moderate as the economy slows and employers are forced to make employment reductions.
ESG: fad or fixture?
ESG is a fixture of the future and a required discipline for all citizens looking to take part in the global ecosystem. Madison has a dedicated ESG officer and has utilized these principles across all that we do. We have adopted the U.N.’s Principles for Responsible Investment, and I have taken the CEO pledge for diversity, equity and inclusion.