Monday, December 22, 2008

Developers Get in Line For TARP

Pity the poor commercial real estate developer.  Sure he made a pile of money in the boom, added a host of properties to his holdings, and probably built a bunch of buildings with borrowed money for which there is little current demand.  He may have even so far have survived the fate of his compatriots Harry Macklowe and Ian Bruce Eichner, both of whom have lost major properties to foreclosure earlier this year.  What ails him now is the prospect of roughly $160 billion in commercial real estate loans coming due in the next year without a single refinancing prospect, and approximately $530 billion within the next three years.  He can refinance, of course, at much worse terms than those he negotiated when the boom was in full force, and he will likely be forced to cough up significantly more equity to secure that loan.  But really, who wants to do that, when you can just write a letter to your buddy Hank Paulson and ask to be included in the TARP?  Sure it's the banks that own most of the CMBS that is set to implode and they have already received boatloads of cash from the government, but we want to make sure we cover all of our bases with the TARP.  Do you want your TARP funds too?  Get in line.

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