“Vulture Ventures” Panel on Distressed Assets Timely and Informative

“Vulture Ventures,” the August luncheon and panel discussion on distressed assets generated a terrific turnout. No surprise. With all the activity regionally and nationally with distressed assets and failing banks, many CREW members are being faced with these obstacles in one way or another.

The panel was comprised of the various disciplines represented in handling troubled Commercial Real Estate. Pam Hansen of Capital One represented the Lender’s prospective. Jon “Chip” Leyens, Jr. of The Steeg Law Firm placed himself in the shoes of the Borrower. Donna Taylor of Stirling Properties, was on the sidelines as the keeper or manager of the foreclosed or troubled asset. Cathy Alba, CCIM of Triple Net Lease was waiting in the wings to swoop in to purchase the troubled assets at a fraction of their mortgage.

Panelists shared their knowledge and expertise, providing a clear understanding of how to best advise clients with distressed assets (whether a lender or borrower), and how best to prepare for the onslaught in the market of these assets if you are a manager or a purchaser. At the forefront of the lively discussion was how to keep these properties out of the hands of the lender to avoid foreclosure or the placing of the asset in the Special Assets pool.

Ms. Hansen explained how the assets wind up in trouble and with their Special Assets group. Capital One, like most lenders would rather work with the borrower to insure this does not happen.

If assets do wind up as troubled assets, Mr. Leyens gave the audience advice on how to work with the lender to save your project. Having a clear plan of action before you meet is critical.

Ms. Taylor explained what happens once the assets become foreclosed upon or are placed in Special Assets. Since you never know what kind of project you will receive or the condition the project will be in, it is important to be prepared to handle what is given to you.

Waiting for the distressed assets to hit the marketplace is Ms. Alba, who represents groups of purchasers who want to invest in them. While there are many obstacles to overcome to secure the purchase, there is money to be made if handled properly.

The bad news: we will see more failures and real estate coming into the marketplace in a distressed stage. The good news: CREW New Orleans members are better prepared to handle distressed assets after “Vulture Ventures.”