Written by Joe Light The Wall Street Journal August 6, 2012
For investors, home is no longer a four-letter word.
The real-estate sector, for the first time in years, is serving as a beacon of relative strength in an otherwise weak economy. Standard & Poors on Tuesday reported that home prices in its S&P/Case-Shiller 20-city index rose 0.9% in May from the prior month, after adjusting for seasonal trends, and have risen 2.6% since bottoming in January.
Some of the world’s smartest investors, including Warren Buffett, are taking notice, placing big bets on a continued recovery in the housing market. Other kinds of real-estate investments including real-estate investment trusts that own shopping malls, apartment buildings and hospitals also have been among the best performers this year.
For ordinary investors, the rebound serves as an opportunity to rethink how much of their portfolio should be in real-estate investments and to participate in the rebirth of a sector they once left for dead.
After the recent returns we’ve seen, people are naturally asking Have I already missed it or is there further upside to come From our perspective, yes, there’s further upside, says Frank Haggerty, a portfolio manager at money manager Duff & Phelps Investment Management who comanages a $1.3 billion mutual fund that invests in commercial-real-estate companies.
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Matthew Shirley joined Saurage Rotenberg Commercial Real Estate in January 2011. Matthew is a graduate of Louisiana State University with a degree in International Trade and Finance. While at LSU Matthew was a member of Omicron Delta Epsilon The International Honor Society for Economics. Matthew’s professional memberships include the Greater Baton Rouge Association of REALTORS® Commercial Investment Division and the Louisiana Commercial Data Base (LACDB).
Saurage Rotenberg Commercial Real Estate is a member of the Baton Rouge Area Chamber of Commerce (BRAC); the West Baton Rouge Chamber of Commerce; the Baton Rouge Growth Coalition; the Baton Rouge Better Business Bureau; the Louisiana Commercial Data Base (LACDB); and the International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC). Several agents, on an individual basis, are members of the Society of Industrial and Office Realtors® (SIOR), the Certified Commercial Investment Member Institute (CCIM); the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR); and the Greater Baton Rouge Association of REALTORS® Commercial Investment Division (CID).