By Vincent J. Nadder, CPA, Partner | Real Estate & Construction Industry Team
I had the pleasure of introducing the keynote speaker for the 7th annual Commercial Real Estate Forum presented by Commonwealth Commercial Partners and Lingerfelt Commonwealth Partners held at the Westin in Richmond, Virginia on Tuesday, April 26, 2016.
The speaker, Christopher Lee of CEL & Associates, shared insights into the millennial generation's habits and lifestyle as well as studies and predictions for millennials impact on the future of the commercial real estate market. Some of his predictions include:
- Home ownership, currently at about 63 percent of Americans, will drop into the high 50 percent category, as the country shifts to a more rental-based society.
- In the near future, women could comprise nearly 40 percent of the C-suite positions within the real estate industry.
- The footprint of office space will continue to shrink. It has already shrunk from 350 square feet per employee during the heyday of the baby boomer generation to 150 square feet. Millennials prefer creative, open spaces where they can collaborate and socialize.
Following Lee's presentation a panel of speakers including Mark Claud, CEO of Commonwealth Commercial Partners; T. Gaylon Layfield, III, president and CEO of Xenith Bank; Peter J. Stone, director at New York-based Fortress Investment Group; and Bradford Sauer, vice president of Sauer Properties Inc. in Richmond shared their view of the millennial generation's impact in the Richmond region. The lively panel discussion, moderated by Brian Whitthoeft with Lingerfelt Commonwealth Partners, shed new light on some of the issues facing the real estate industry as a result of the changing demographics in the RVA.
Paula C. Squires, writer for Virginia Business, covered the event. You can read more of Christopher Lee's real estate predictions and insights in her article.
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