Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs) in Washington, D.C. have taken a look at the market and decided this is the year to sell. There are billions of dollars in property assets owned by REITs in the region, and they have noted the high sale prices, and especially that they’re predicted to be going down soon. They want to sell at the top of the market. We’re headed towards a buyer’s market, and unless you want to hold on for another five years or so, the time to sell is now. And that’s true for any investor, not only this localized market.
AvalonBay Communities has sold a net of $895 million worth of property, despite buying $335 worth of property in the same period. Washington REIT is currently a net buyer by a small margin, but once they sell their entire retail portfolio for about $800 million, that will shift dramatically. Liberty Property Trust is also seeking to drop their office portfolio and focus on industrial property. Many hotel holdings companies, particularly in Bethesda, don’t want to be owning that type of property five years from now and are either selling or merging.