The ULI/McCoy Symposium on Real Estate Finance, hosted annually by ULI’s Center for Capital Markets and Real Estate, exemplifies the Institute’s long-standing tradition of knowledge sharing. Held since 1994, the highly regarded event is an invitation-only forum that brings together 30 to 40 leading real estate finance and investment executives from around the globe to discuss key trends and issues affecting capital markets and the real estate industry. The symposium is endowed with a gift to the ULI Foundation from ULI Life Trustee Bowen H. “Buzz” McCoy, president of Buzz McCoy Associates Inc.
The December 2018 symposium opened with presentations from McCoy; Ken Rosen, chairman, Rosen Consulting Group; and ULI Global Board Member Roy H. March, chief executive officer, Eastdil Secured, laying the foundation for a highly interactive, day-long discussion among all attendees. The main takeaway: While the real estate industry appears to be nearing the end of the cycle, there are still opportunities available for investors. However, participants pointed to signs of trouble on the horizon, mainly due to oversupply in certain sectors such as shopping centers, senior and student housing, and self-storage.
In recapping part of the discussion for an article in Urban Land, Rosen, March, and McCoy offered the following thoughts:
“There was not a lot of worry [from participants in the symposium]—no sense of crisis or impending crisis,” said Rosen.
“You could curl up in a fetal position looking at where we are in the cycle,” said March. “But looking at what has caused a break in the cycle in the past, it has been about oversupply. We don’t have oversupply overall.”
“When things go sour, what you need more than anything else is patience,” said McCoy.