Coronavirus slows, but doesn't stop real estate lending: Report

Lending continues for multifamily, industrial properties

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The coronavirus pandemic has been a wild card for real estate.

The virus was a harbinger of a downward swing for the pricey Manhattan real estate market, but it’s been a boon for luxury rentals. Residential agents have been scrambling to produce “virtual tours” for homebuyers advised to social distance themselves from anyone who could be carrying COVID-19, and they’ve been putting “coronavirus clauses” in contracts to ease buyers’ fears amid a rocky economy.

Still, all that hasn’t stopped real estate lenders from providing loans, at least for some types of real estate, The Real Deal reported from a new markets report from Primrose Capital, a Miami-based real estate capital advisory firm.

Miami Skyline with palm trees

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“At present there is a conundrum between investment managers’ inherent need to deploy capital, while simultaneously assessing risk and ensuring appropriate capital preservation measures are in place for its stakeholders,” the Primrose report states.

Multifamily and industrial properties have seen the most lending, according to the report. Office lending has slowed slightly. “Selective” hotel lending continues. Retail and condominiums have seen the least activity, with condos being considered “illiquid” even before the pandemic hit.

In this file photo, a home under construction and for sale is shown in Roswell, Ga. (AP Photo/John Bazemore, File)

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Anyone looking to buy a single-family home now may find stricter terms from agencies like Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, according to the report.

Fannie and Freddie have also said they would provide relief like forbearance for mortgage borrowers impacted by the coronavirus outbreak, including multifamily property owners whose tenants fall behind on rent.

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