Despite challenges, HRE fundamentals remain strong, Revista says
By John B. Mugford
Perhaps James A. Schmid III, chief investment officer and managing partner with Media, Pa.-based Anchor Health Properties, summed up how many successful healthcare real estate (HRE) investment and development firms are going about their business at a time when costs and interest rates are on the rise.
“Last year, 2022 was certainly a pivot point, I think, both for our sector as well as commercial real estate and the economy as a whole,” Mr. Schmid said. “It was, in aggregate, a very successful year for us as we closed just over $600 million of new acquisitions, monetized and or recapitalized several hundred million of developed and/or owned assets … and monetized a strategic position in our operating business with a client of Stepstone Real Estate, an international offshore client.
“That being said,” he added, “as the market has continued to move, with interest rates continuing to rise as the (U.S. Federal Reserve Bank) increases rates, we’ve continued to be more and more selective about decisions we make, particularly with new investments – trying to be thoughtful about what where we want to own and why, trying to focus on our areas of strength and scale across our platform.
“This is also true on the development front, where we continue to be extremely active. We really haven’t seen much of a slowdown in development; if anything, we’ve seen a continued acceleration in development in different parts of the country, particularly high growth markets where health systems and physician clients alike have a continued need for more and more specific space for clinical use.”
Mr. Schmid was a guest speaker during a fourth quarter (Q4) subscriber webcast hosted Jan. 24 by Arnold, Md.-based Revista, a data firm that provides a wide variety of statistics on the HRE sector to its subscribers.
The webcast led by Revista principals Mike Hargrave and Hilda Martin focused heavily on medical office building (MOB) market data during this time of inflation and rising debt costs, with much of that data reaffirming what a strong industry the HRE sector continues to be.
In his presentation, Mr. Hargrave noted that the occupancy rate for MOBs rose to
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