News & Research Archive

"There's Something Positive Going On"

Jan 06, 2011

It has been over three years now since we started to witness a slow down in real estate transactions. For us, the change started in September 2007. By the time 2008 rolled around our business was frozen with all of the uncertainty of how bad things were with businesses in general. We started 2009 with renewed hope only to see slight improvements and then another decline in activity when the fourth quarter began. Again in 2010, we felt that things would improve but the unemployment rate kept growing and governments around the world were faced with staggering debt that seemed to poise potential disaster to everyone.

We now have some signs that we might start to see a turn-around in the economy that is real. The beauty of being a commercial real estate broker is that we see and feel this turn-around before any one else. When a business starts talking about needing space for growth, or when an investor says it is now time to buy and follows through, we start seeing a turn around.

My business is like the front of a train. If my business improves, naturally, the business of the architect, attorney, moving company, furniture vendor, building contractor etc. will follow. Everyone tied to an office move benefits. If all of the business sectors start to improve then it affects the entire business climate in a positive way.

So why do I think there is hope? I think there is hope because there is true activity out there in the world of commercial real estate. An example would be a typical size office deal in San Francisco; I toured a 4,000 square foot tenant over the last two months looking for office space for an end of the year move. We had to move fast to visit our options, make our "short list" of buildings and eventually start making offers. Over the last three years we could almost guarantee that every space we saw in our initial tours would be available to us when we were ready to make offers. Well not for this client! After just two months, two of our top three choices for this client were at leases before we could submit our own offers. This is a sign!

Optimism is built into each salesman and this salesman is telling you good things are finally going to happen this year. Get ready and start working to get your share.


Written by: Hans Hansson


Hans Hansson is President of Starboard TCN Worldwide Real Estate Services as well as a member of the Board of Directors for TCN Worldwide Real Estate. Hans has been an active broker for over 26 years in the San Francisco Bay Area and specializes in office leasing and investments. If you have any questions or comments please email or call him at (415) 765-6897. You may also check out his website,

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