Friday, March 30, 2012

Do QR Codes work for Commercial Real Estate?

I provide location advice to owners and occupants of industrial buildings in Southern California. I believe that QR codes are very misunderstood and more importantly misused in the commercial real estate industry. I will attempt to explain why and share with you the ways that using QR codes (or MS Tags) do work.

What are QR codes anyway? QR codes or Quick Response codes are two dimensional bar codes that allow the author to embed text, URLs, phone numbers, or vcards. They are free and easy to produce and are "open source" meaning they can be created by many companies, and each company’s code reader should be able to read every other company’s QR codes. Meanwhile, Microsoft Tag’s technology is closed, meaning you can only create and scan Microsoft Tags using Microsoft’s platform. While some believe the open nature of QR codes will help them gain traction and become more widespread in the market place, others argue that by controlling the entire scanning process, Microsoft will be better able to assure quality, and thus rise to the posted by Nicole Hall, Account Manager with Mobilize Worldwide.

You will need a QR code reader application for your smart phone or tablet. I use the AT and T scanner on my IPhone and IPad and it works great. The website for scanning MS Tags is

What is the best use for tags in commercial real estate? In my opinion, tags (whether QR codes or MS tags) should supply content that is easily viewable or usable on a mobile format. As an example, if you scan the QR code that is at the top left of the blog, my contact information automatically drops into your contact manager so you don't have to insert the information manually...or have your assistant accomplish it. I proudly display this code on my business card and I get a lot of questions and the wow factor is epic! Folks that I meet and exchange cards have an easy way to save my information so that I don't end up in a stack of cards in their drawer.
Another great way to use tags is embed video. Remember, the four things that can be embedded into a tag are text, phone numbers, URLs, and, vcards. Well guess what, video content loaded into You Tube has a URL that can be captured and embedded...simple. Using tags and embedded video content allow you to communicate a message that a static website cannot accomplish. Below are a couple of examples of video embedded QR codes and MS tags. Both of these codes have been used in successful marketing campaigns.
Have fun creating your tags and you will unleash the power of scanning!

Monday, March 26, 2012

CT Realty Investors Announces 100 Percent Lease-Up of Beaumont Logistics Center - MarketWatch

I provide location advice to owners and occupants of industrial buildings in Southern California. The article highlighted is evidence of the "big box" activity occurring in the Inland Empire of Southern California.

CT Realty Investors ( ) announced today that the Beaumont Logistics Center, located at 520 Fourth St. and 415 Nicholas Rd. in Beaumont, Calif., has been fully leased to Updike Distribution Logistics and Hand Air Express. Combined, the two lease transactions represent one of the largest industrial leasing accomplishments in the Inland Empire in 2012.

CT Realty acquired the 572,143-square-foot project, which includes two new state-of-the-art LEED certified industrial warehouse buildings, in August 2011. At the time of purchase, the property was entirely vacant. The all-cash transaction also included 30 acres of fully entitled land which will accommodate another 611,000-square-foot cross-dock warehouse building. The project, completed in 2008, is located at the confluence of the 60 and 10 Freeways adjacent to the 60-acre Lowe's Distribution Center... You can read the article in its entirety by clicking below:

CT Realty Investors Announces 100 Percent Lease-Up of Beaumont Logistics Center - MarketWatch

Monday, March 12, 2012

Social Media for Commercial Real Estate that REALLY works! For Sale: Industrial in Fullerton, CA, $8,500,000

I provide location advice for owners and for occupants of industrial buildings in southern California. Social Media marketing has been a part of my real estate practice for the past three years. I have used Facebook for a profile and business pages, Twitter for timely articles relating to CRE, Plaxo for birthday reminders, You Tube for virtual tours of my listings, Linked In groups for posting relevant content and connecting with fellow CRE professionals. Some in the industry have asked what is one thing they can do to "jump in" to social media marketing? I would suggest becoming familiar with "Postlets". Postlets was purchased by Zillow last year and remains a terrific place to create, manage, and link your CRE listings to various social media sites including Craig's List, Facebook, Linked In, Plaxo, etc. Postlets works seamlessly with You Tube for virtual tours and creates a professional web site for each listing. Did I mention that the service is FREE? Check out the below listing for the power of Postlets and become a believer...I certainly have!

For Sale: Industrial in Fullerton, CA, $8,500,000

States Hardest Hit by Housing Collapse Lead U.S. Jobs Recovery - Bloomberg

I provide location advice to owners and to occupants of industrial buildings in Southern California. Our firm has definitely felt the effects of an expanding job market this year and the tail end of 2011. We experienced net absorption in the industrial market. Good industrial alternatives are getting more difficult to find and owners are a bit more reluctant to execute long term leases (in excess of five years) without greater than average annual increases (greater than 3%). We are seeing a couple of new spec industrial projects as owners anticipate a shortage of industrial alternatives within the next year. We have not seen much rent growth despite the shortage, however. Below is an article which outlines the industries which are adding surprise technology, food, and healthcare.

States Hardest Hit by Housing Collapse Lead U.S. Jobs Recovery - Bloomberg

Friday, March 9, 2012

A new creative way to review title

I provide location advice to owners and occupants of industrial buildings in Southern California. I have found a new source for title review in the event I need to dispose of property in Lousiana. This clip is meant in jest and was borrrowed from one of my fellow shareholders...consequently, I cannot take credit for its authenticity...but it sure is fun!

"Part of rebuilding New Orleans caused residents often to be challenged with the task of tracing home titles back potentially hundreds of years.. With a community rich with history stretching back over two centuries, houses have been passed along through generations of family, sometimes making it quite difficult to establish ownership. Here's a great letter an attorney wrote to the FHA on behalf of a client:

You have to love this lawyer.......

A New Orleans lawyer sought an FHA loan for a client. He was told the loan would be granted if he could prove satisfactory title to a parcel of property being offered as collateral. The title to the property dated back to 1803, which took the lawyer three months to track down. After sending the information to the FHA, he received the following reply.

(Actual reply from FHA):
"Upon review of your letter adjoining your client's loan application, we note that the request is supported by an Abstract of Title. While we compliment the able manner in which you have prepared and presented the application, we must point out that you have only cleared title to the proposed collateral property back to 1803. Before final approval can be accorded, it will be necessary to clear the title back to its origin."

Annoyed, the lawyer responded as follows:
(Actual response):
"Your letter regarding title in Case No.189156 has been received. I note that you wish to have title extended further than the 206 years covered by the present application.
I was unaware that any educated person in this country, particularly those working in the property area, would not know that Louisiana was purchased by the United States from France , in 1803 the year of origin identified in our application.  For the edification of uninformed FHA bureaucrats, the title to the land prior to U.S. ownership was obtained from France , which had acquired it by Right of Conquest from Spain . The land came into the possession of Spain by Right of Discovery made in the year 1492 by a sea captain named Christopher Columbus, who had been granted the privilege of seeking a new route to India by the Spanish monarch, Queen Isabella.
The good Queen Isabella, being a pious woman and almost as careful about titles as the FHA, took the precaution of securing the blessing of the Pope before she sold her jewels to finance Columbus's expedition...Now the Pope, as I'm sure you may know, is the emissary of Jesus Christ, the Son of God, and God, it is commonly accepted, created this world. Therefore, I believe it is safe to presume that God also made that part of the world called Louisiana . God, therefore, would be the owner of origin and His origins date back to before the beginning of time, the world as we know it, and the FHA. I hope you find God's original claim to be satisfactory. Now, may we have our  loan?"
The loan was immediately approved. "