HREAO Event Recap: Southern California Real Estate Market Trends Panel 2014

11111 Santa Monica Boulevard Suite 210, Santa Monica, CA, 90025. Monday, Mar 31st, 2014 at 6:30pm.




With unparallel wit and humor, Professor Mark Karlan from UCLA School of Anderson draws upon his former experience as former Executive Managing Director of CBRE Global Investor and guided the audience through an overview of current investment, development, and real estate policy landscape in Southern California with an experienced panelists.  The 2nd annual Real Estate Trends panel discussion in Los Angeles, hosted by the Harvard Real Estate Alumni Organization (HREAO), and sponsored by Platinum Properties in Los Angeles, took place at 11111 Santa Monica Boulevard in Los Angeles, California on March 31st, 2014.  The alumni speakers shared their deep expertise ranging from micro unit development, large scaled mixed-use development, to real estate financing market and public policy.


The discussion began with an introduction of HREAO, followed by Mark’s discussion questions with Jay Glaubach of DLG Real Estate Capital Partners.  Jay described the current investment landscape and the multi-billion portfolio the firm has to invest in creative office spaces, a property class with projected high demands in the region.  The firm has been successful in acquire multiple properties for development and redevelopment, and invested in opportunistic real estate investment in multiple asset classes. 


Catering to the current Gen Y/baby boomer demographic in Los Angeles, Alan Dibartolomeo from AMP Devleopment shared his insights toward the current market demand for micro units multifamily residential with recent construction of the 208 unit Eleve Loft and Skydeck in Glendale, California.  The project is the first in a series of Young Urban Community projects that is planning to developed.   Alan described the micro units catering to the Millenials demographic who make up 30 percent of the U.S. population, and continue to be a key target demographic for development projects in the near future.


Varun Akula, director at Hines, shared his experience in recent larger scale development pursuit at the Bergamot Transit Village in Santa Monica.  The large, 760,000 SF high profile redevelopment project that began in 2007, including residential, office, and retail, had oppositions from local community and NIMBY, and experienced hurdles from local community groups and city council members through out the entitlement and predevelopment process.  Varun shared his sentiment toward the development process and offered a perspective toward the political landscape in the recent development.


Mark turned the dicussion to Professor Jenny Scheutz, a professor of land use economics at the School of Public Policy at the University of Southern California.  Jenny described the current transportation and land use policy framework and socio-economic demographics that support the real estate market condition.  The projected trends include more transit-oriented development that cater to a younger population who prefer a more urban-centric lifestyle.


For smaller scale development, Greg Cullen of Harvard Real Estate Investment shared his experience of acquiring and redeveloping a portfolio of single family distressed homes in the past ten years.  The single family housing market has been in demand in recent years due to the recession and availability of inventory, thus the market has shifted notably through out the past ten years.


Mark concluded the panel discussion with questions and answers from the audience, ranging from large scale development prospect to whether each panelist invests in real estate with personal finance.  Everyone except for Mark and Greg mentioned they do not invest in real estate.  Jenny humorously mentioned that is why she is working as a professor. 



Professor Mark Karlan (Real Estate Finance) - Former Executive Managing Director of CBRE Global Investors/Professor at UCLA School of Anderson. (College/HBS/HLS)
Alan Dibartolomeo  (Multifamily) - Director of Development, AMF Development. (HBS)
Varun Akula (Development) - Director, Hines. (College)
Dr. Jenny Schuetz (Land Use Economics) - Professor at School of Public Policy, University of Southern California. (HKS)
Jay Glaubach (Private Equity Investment) - Director, DLJ Real Estate Capital Partners. (College/HBS/HLS)
Greg Cullen (Residential) - President, Harvard Investment Group. (HBS)  

Thank you to Platinum Realty for co-organizing the event, and to the Urban Land Institute of Los Angeles, Harvard Club of Los Angeles, Harvard Business School Alumni Club of Los Angeles, University of Southern California Alumni Club, and UCLA Alumni and Real Estate Club for marketing and advertising the event.