August 12, 2018

Finally! Home Warranties Explained!  Meet Our Home Warranty Expert, Stacey Berg

Finally! Home Warranties Explained! Meet Our Home Warranty Expert, Stacey Berg

Last week we had a great radio interview with Stacey Berg from American Home Shield (AHS). American Home Shield is THE premiere company in the home warranty business and have been doing it for 45 years. They are known as the founder and leader of the home warranty industry. In fact they have paid out more than $2 billion in claims in the last 5 years alone.
For 10 years, AHS Account Manager Stacey Berg has enjoyed helping her clients discover the value and benefits that AHS Home Protection Plans provide for real estate agents, home buyers, and home sellers. "The most interesting and rewarding part of my job is helping my customers," she told us. "Being a remote representative allows me to be available to my customers when they need me.” Of course one of the States Stacey covers remotely from her office in Georgia is our Great State of Montana. Stacey went on to say, “Because I have access to contract information and the capability to place orders for the folks I deal with immediately, I feel the service I have to offer is most valuable."
Before becoming an account manager, Stacey worked as a real estate sales department representative, giving her well-rounded knowledge about AHS products and services, as well as a good foundation for collaborating with real estate professionals and their clients. She holds a bachelor's degree in liberal studies from California State University.
Bottomline, we learned a ton about home warranties from Stacey when she was with us on the show last week. In fact we learned that it is likely that a home warranty will pay for itself and if anything it will give you a lot of piece of mind August 12, 2018 Stacey Berg Account Manager after you buy a home. Stacey also told us about a great idea for sellers. They can get a home warranty and offer it to potential buyers as a value added part of the sale. It can give you that extra edge to get your home sold and can often cover you if the buyer’s home inspection finds a problem. Best of all you don’t even have to pay for the home warranty until you close the sale!
If you did not get a chance to hear the show be sure and click on the “Listen to Past Shows” button above and give it a listen. If you would like more info about American Home Shield you can click here ( If you are a Realtor and would like information about offering the AHS home warranty to your clients click here ( If you would like to talk to
Stacey Berg more about this you can email her at or call her toll free at (800) 393-3640.
Thanks Stacey for coming on the show and giving us such great information!

July 15th 2018

Meet Montana's Top Ghost Buster! Sean Murphy of Murphy Radon

Meet Montana's Top Ghost Buster! Sean Murphy of Murphy Radon

This week on Montana Real Estate Today we talked to Sean Murphy of Murphy Radon. In a way he is a true Ghost Buster in that he finds and gets rid of tasteless, invisible, Radon gas in homes and other properties in Western Montana and he is super good at it.

Montana unfortunately is one of several states in the U.S. that has the highest levels of Radon gas according to the E.P.A. Thus it is imperative that you know that a house has been tested by an expert like Sean Murphy and is safe before you buy it.

The only way you can find out if you have Radon gas in your home is if you call Sean or someone that knows how to find it like he does. So why should you even worry about something you can't see, smell or taste? Well, that is because next to cigarettes, Radon gas is the leading cause of lung cancer and unfortunately in Montana it is everywhere. Now before you get ready to move to a different state it is harmless as long as the gas can escape out into the atmosphere. The problem with it being in your home is it comes up from the ground into your house and has no where to go and thus makes it's way into your lungs. This is why if you have ever bought a house in Montana there is usually a test done to make sure it is not in the house before you buy it or it will have a certification showing it has been tested.

So what happens if it is in your house, who ya gonna call? That is right you need to call Sean Murphy or someone like him to do what they call mitigation, which means they install equipment that creates reverse pressure so the gas cannot come into your house from the ground and stays put underground. It is some real cool science that Sean from Murphy Radon has gone through all kinds of training to know how to do.

To learn more about Radon, how to get a test done and most importantly how to contact Sean at Murphy Radon you can go to his website at or call or email at, (406) 531-3860 or (406) 531-1717. Sean works mainly in Western Montana but he is happy to help you find someone that knows what they are doing if you live anywhere else in Montana.

Thanks to Sean and to his wife Sabrina who is a Realtor in Missoula, MT for coming by and talking to us on the show. If you missed the show just click on the Listen to Past Shows button at the top of this page and give it a listen. You will be very glad you did!

July 8th 2018

Craig Hartze of Apex Inspections Takes Us to the Apex of Home Inspecting

Craig Hartze of Apex Inspections Takes Us to the Apex of Home Inspecting

This week on Montana Real Estate Today we talked to Craig Hartze of Apex Inspections. Craig gave us some incredible advice about why we all need to get a home inspection before buying a home.

A home inspection is the only way you will know what you are actually buying. Without one you may actually be buying a home full of problems. Craig actually went through the average home room by room and top to bottom on the show and talked about what a good inspector should look for and how they identify potential problems in a home.

Maybe even more importantly, Craig gave some fantastic advice on how to select the right home inspector for you and the home you are buying. You actually have a choice in who inspects the home you are buying and that that choice can make the difference in between just a rubber stamp of approval and actually knowing what exactly you are buying and just what future costs might be waiting for you after you buy the home.

Another great idea that Craig talked about on the show was the idea of sellers getting a inspection done before they put it on the market. Why do that you ask? Well, when you know what problems your home may have before you put it on the market you can actually increase it’s value by taking care of those prior to listing it for sale. This also allows you to gain a potential buyers trust by showing them that you and your realtor really know everything about the home you are selling. What a great idea, especially in this competitive home selling market!

We urge everyone to get a home inspection by someone like Craig of Apex Inspections. Another great service that Craig offers is if you are not in his service area he will help you find a inspector in the area the home you are buying is in. So give him a call before you buy and let Craig Hartze of Apex Inspections help you know exactly what you are buying.

Thanks Craig for taking the time to come on Montana Real Estate Today and giving us all such great information and advice! You can visit Apex Inspections website by clicking here. Or just give them a call at (406) 580-4708.

June 10th, 2018

Meet John Medlinger of Superior Hardwoods of Montana!  Your Hardwood Guru.

Meet John Medlinger of Superior Hardwoods of Montana! Your Hardwood Guru.

This week on Montana Real Estate Today John Medlinger of Superior Hardwoods of Montana joined us for a fascinating look at the use of hardwoods in your home. John has become what we like to call our "Hardwood Guru" and once you meet him you will be calling him your "Hardwood Guru" too! You will not find anyone in Montana that knows more about hardwoods and how to use them in your home, or for that matter, even in your rental properties, than John Medlinger!

John's love for wood began in the upper peninsula of Michigan about 2-3 miles from Lake Superior. That is where John cut and logged hardwoods off of his family's property and had it sawed into lumber and then shipped to Montana.

In 1977 he founded Superior Hardwoods of Montana, which became the first wholesale hardwood lumber company to serve the Treasure State. The business continued to grow and develop into a destination for wood enthusiasts. In 1990 John expanded his interests in wood to include antique and reclaimed material. John is truly a pioneer in the reclaimed movement, sparking interest and appreciation for turn-of-the-century building material that formerly had gone unnoticed and often was destroyed. With John's vision the beams and lumber harvested from these beautiful structures live and now Superior Hardwoods of Montana is home to 11 acres of this distinct and unique reclaimed materials.

The operations also include a 10,000 square foot warehouse full of exotic and domestic lumber as well as over 100,000 square feet of flooring. In addition there is a 4,000 square foot millwork shop where custom cutting and flooring options are created.

To this day John remains passionate and dedicated to making Superior Hardwoods the best company possible as the company heads into the future continuing to serve customers with the most complete care anywhere. John's son Cory has also joined the business and together they now serve customers all across the State of Montana and beyond. You can lean more about Superior Hardwoods of Montana by clinking here You can also see some of the incredible places that have used the stunning products that John and his team create and sell by clicking here

John resides in Missoula with his lovely wife, Jan, and faithful canine companion, Marlee and continues to be a discerning wood collector. Thank you John for coming on the show this week and for sharing your incredible knowledge with all of our listeners. We can't wait to have you on the show again soon! Oh, and also thanks for becoming our and now all of Montana's "Hardwood Guru".

June 3rd, 2018

Avatar Realty In Helena Joins Montana Real Estate Today

Avatar Realty In Helena Joins Montana Real Estate Today

All of us here at Montana Real Estate Today would like to welcome David Brandon and Avatar Realty to our team! Avatar Realty is an incredible real estate company based in Helena, Montana. They are our latest "Local Experts" for the show and will cover the greater Helena real estate market for all of our listeners in the the Helena Area.

David Brandon is the founder of Avatar Realty. He is a fourth generation Montanan from the Helena area, raised on a Dairy farm near Craig, Montana along the Missouri River. David is a Capital High School Grad and after a year at the University of Montana, he joined the Navy to see the world. Though he loved his 10 years of service in the Navy discovering the world, he also discovered he missed the mountains, valleys and lakes of the Big Sky Country. David moved back to Helena, and started a construction and real estate development company that operated in five Montana counties, and developed 30 projects, including development and construction of three 100-plus room hotels, storage units, retail, commercial and industrial facilities. He now uses all that incredible knowledge and experience to serve his clients and to help his other agents at Avatar Realty to do the same.

Besides David, there are 7 other real estate agents at Avatar Realty and David is looking to hire up to 3 more. "I don't mind if folks that apply don't have experience as a real estate agent, I am more than happy to train them", Brandon said. "I am just looking for enthusiastic individuals who are known for the their honesty and integrity, because those qualities make up the foundation of any good agent".

While on the show this Sunday David talked a lot about the Helena Montana real estate market and told us about a few of Avatar Realty's listings among other things. If you would like to learn more about David Brandon, his agents as well as all the great properties they have for sale just click here, or you can email them at or simply call them at (406) 449-7804.

Again, welcome aboard David and agents at Avatar Realty in Helena, Montana our latest Local Experts to join us here at Montana Real Estate Today.

May 13th, 2018

Three Decades of Building Dreams.

Three Decades of Building Dreams.

Last Sunday on Montana Real Estate Today William Schrock of Schrock Construction stopped by the radio show. Willian gave us a behind the scenes look at the business of building dream homes. He gave us a ton if incredible advice on topics like, How to Find the Right Contractor, What Are the Costs of Building a Home, Getting a Construction Loan, and much, much more. No doubt this show basically put many listeners on the road to building their own new dream home. He also gave some great advice about remodeling by helping host Dale Moore answer some listener emails that were asking about that topic as well as others, right during the show! Now that's a full service contractor.

William has been building dreams for over three decades. Successful in business, family and faith, we really were able to get a great peek into his secrets to success which mainly was a simple process of getting to know his clients and listening to their wants, needs and desires. He then works closely with then to turn those into a reality that lasts a lifetime! Well he made it sound simple but in reality we know that process takes a great deal of hard work and a total dedication to the folks he builds homes for.

His company, Schrock Construction also builds many other structures besides homes, from large commercial projects like airplane hangers to all types of buildings for businesses all across Montana. Click here to see some of those and of course you for sure need to take a look at some of the wonderful homes William and his great crew have built by clicking here. If you missed the show last Sunday on your favorite radio station with William Schrock be sure and click on "Listen to Past Shows" button on this page to hear the show. Also if you would like to ask William any questions just click on the "Contact Us" button and ask away.

April 8th, 2018

Who is The Man Who Likely Knows the Most About Farm and Ranch Land in Montana? Well We Found Him! Meet Bill Bahny of Bill Bahny & Associates

Who is The Man Who Likely Knows the Most About Farm and Ranch Land in Montana? Well We Found Him! Meet Bill Bahny of Bill Bahny & Associates

Last Sunday on Montana Real Estate Today we learned a tremendous amount about the farm and ranch real estate market from our Local Expert Bill Bahny of Bill Bahny & Associates in Helen, MT. Now even though Bill is based in Helena he deals with farm and ranch real estate all across Montana.

Bill is just flat a wealth of knowledge when it comes to farm and ranch land, whether you are talking about a 20 acre little farm for the family to have fun with or a 60,000 acre spread that is so big it would take you days and days to walk across. We barely scratched the surface of all Bill knows on the one hour show and we can't wait to have him back to tell us more about one of the most fascinating parts of Montana's incredible real estate industry. It is always an incredible show when we get to talk about the pieces of land that literally have attracted folks to Montana for the last 100 years. The farm and ranch industry in Montana has one of the most unique blends of old west charm and high tech innovations that you will ever see and the folks that are buying these places are just as diverse. Click on the "Listen to Past Shows" button on this site to listen to this show if you missed it. The show will be posted there after Sunday April 8th.

If you would like to see some of Bill's unbelievable farm and ranch listings click here and get ready to be amazed! For example the pictures below are a few pages from Bill's brochure on the Cedar Creek Ranch near Wibaux, MT. Just click on either page or here and you can see the whole brochure. This is one of those listings that are hard to imagine with 10,136 deeded acres along with 9,143 acres of BLM, 640 acres State Lease and 640 private lease acres. The land goes farther than the eye can see and all of it is just stunning!

In addition to dealing with farms and ranches all across Montana Bill Bahny and Associates also deals in all types of real estate and services like, residential, commercial, multifamily, property management and much more in the greater Helena Montana area. So if you are wanting to buy or sell real estate around our State's Capital City be sure and give them a call or click here to go to their website and take a look at their listings and learn more about Bill Bahny & Associates. Thanks Bill Bahny for spending an hour with us that we will not forget!

March 25th, 2018

Drew Gaertner From McLean, Younkin & Willett, a Top Real Estate Law Firm in Montana Talks About Planning Your Estate

Drew Gaertner From McLean, Younkin & Willett, a Top Real Estate Law Firm in Montana Talks About Planning Your Estate

On last weeks show Drew Gaertner from McLean, Younkin & Willett gave us some great information about planning our estate so that we can pass our assets on to our loved ones the best possible way.

Drew Moore Gaertner is a 5th generation Montanan. She received her undergraduate degree in Communication, with a minor in Sport Management, from the University of California, Santa Barbara in 2008 where she graduated with honors and was a member of the national championship women's club soccer team. Drew earned her J.D. from the University of Montana School of Law. During law school, she served as the president of the international legal honor society Phi Delta Phi, worked as a law clerk for the Honorable Ralph B. Kirscher at the United States Bankruptcy Court during her clinical externship, and interned at Milodragovich, Dale & Steinbrenner, P.C. Following law school, Drew earned a Master of Laws in Taxation (LL.M.) from the University of Washington School of Law where she graduated with honors. While earning her LL.M., Drew was awarded the merit based scholarship of UW Tax Scholar and was appointed a Hazelton Fellow to assist law Professor Shannon McCormack in her scholarly work. Drew's practice emphasizes estate planning, probate & trusts, business planning & transactions, taxation, real estate and commercial law. She is admitted to practice before the Montana Supreme Court and the United States District Court of the State of Montana. Drew, her husband and daughter enjoy skiing, camping, and spending time with family and friends.

One of the great quotes from Drew on last week's show was "if you don't have an estate plan, the State of Montana will have one for you and you don't want that one". Drew talked about some the disasters that come from not having a plan that can cause your assets to be held up in probate for 6 months to 2 years causing your loved ones all kinds of hardship. The good news is she gave us all kinds of tips on how to avoid that and pointed all of our listeners in the right direction to create a plan that will help their families long after they are gone. If you want more information you can call Drew at (406) 582-0027 or email her at You can also visit the McLean, Younkin & Willett website by clicking here.

March 11th, 2018

Myles Link From Opportunity Bank Talks About Real Estate Lending in 2018

Myles Link From Opportunity Bank Talks About Real Estate Lending in 2018

On last Sunday's show Myles Link from Opportunity Bank came on the show with Cohost Dale Moore and talked about Real Estate Loans. He gave us some fantastic information on everything from his thoughts about a possible rise in interest rates in Montana, to a great review of all the different types of real estate loans in Montana and a whole lot more. If you missed the show click here and you can hear the show. You might be surprised at all the things you had no idea about when it comes to borrowing money to buy your next home.

One thing that really stood out to us was that now days you can pretty much go through the entire borrowing process with Opportunity Bank online! We thought that was just for the huge out of town banks, but nope, you can do that with an incredible local bank that has been here in Montana since 1922. Opportunity Bank has offices in 12 Montana cities from Big Timber to Great Falls, Helena to Livingston, Missoula to Sheridan, Twin Bridges and many more towns across the state. It has never been easier and best of all you are dealing with someone local so online or in the bank they are right here in Montana to help you.

Myles also told us that they can help you even if they don't have a branch in your town so you can tap into their incredible hometown service anywhere in Montana and he explained they can even help you buy that special get away as far away as Arizona. Yes we learned a lot about loans on the show last week and you can even learn more by calling Myles at (406) 203-4310 or email him at If you would like to learn more about Opportunity Mortgage you can also click here.  

February 18th, 2018

Are you wondering how the new tax law is going to affect you? There are lots of rumors and then there are the facts. Gordon Campbell gave us the facts about the new tax law on last weeks Montana Real Estate Today radio show, especially as it relates to buying, selling and getting deductions on your loans and real estate taxes. If you did not hear the show, you NEED to! Click here to listen to the show online. You do not want to miss this show. It will truly give you the info that you need to know!

Gordon Campbell has been a CPA since 1980 and is considered one of the top tax advisors, planners and CPA's in Montana. He gave us some great information on last weeks show. If you have any questions about what we talked about you can click here and send us any questions you have.

If you would like to talk to Gordon about how he can help you with your taxes or help you plan for your future, just go to his website by clicking here. There you can learn about his company, Campbell & Associates, P.C. and get all of his contact information. His company is located in Missoula but he can help you no matter where you live.

Thanks Gordon for coming on the show last Sunday and helping us understand how the new tax law will affect us!

February 11th, 2018

Denise Kelly is our Realtor of the week!

Denise Kelly is our Realtor of the week!

Call her at (406) 299-3500

Denise Kelly was on the show last Sunday from her REMAX Premier office in Butte, MT and as usual she gave us some amazing information about the greater Butte, Montana market. If you missed the show you just have to hear it. You missed a great one. Click the "Listen to Past Shows" button to hear it.

If you are in the market to buy property within Butte, MT and the surrounding areas Denise can help you choose the home that is right for you. Finding the right home is hard but getting the right RE/MAX agent isn't. Denise and her agents have over 15 years of combined experience to help you make an informed decision.

When it comes to selling your property, there are few better than Denise Kelly and her team. She will market your home using the most up-to-date technology and social media techniques including Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Google and of course the Montana Real Estate Today Radio Show. Plain and simple, Denise works incredibly hard to get the job done and she does it fast. Contact her today for a FREE market analysis. Remember, this is a FREE service provided by Denise and her agents in the REMAX Premier office in Butte, MT.

When purchasing Commercial, Land, Foreclosures and Investment properties in Butte, MT and the surrounding areas without a doubt Denise Kelly should be your first choice. Denise and her REMAX Premier agents in Butte, MT are professional and experienced agents who can guide you through the ins and outs of every purchase.

Check out her site here you will find tons of great information and you can look at some of her incredible listings like the one you will see when you click here. She talked about it on the show and also talked about several others that you will find one her site. Go there now and prepared to be amazed at what you see especially the prices which are lower than most places you will find in the state for the same size and type. Check out her site now at

January 21st, 2018

Richie Pemberton is our Realtor of the week!

Richie Pemberton is our Realtor of the week!

Call Him At (406) 589-5929

All of us here at Montana Real Estate Today want to welcome Richie Pemberton of Windermere Real Estate in

downtown Bozeman as our newest Local Expert! "Real Estate Richie" is your go to guy for everything real estate in the greater Bozeman and Livingston areas. He is a 4th generation Montanan. Raised for the majority of his life in Manhattan, Montana. Richie is in his 4th year of real estate in the Bozeman, Montana area. He very much enjoys the business of helping Buyers and Sellers meet their goals. He just flat loves his job and is excellent at it! Richie is married to his beautiful wife Rachel and they had their first child, Reed, August 2016! Richie and his family enjoy going to church, going to sporting events, hiking, biking and running. He told us that one of his main goals in Real Estate is to create relationships that last a lifetime.

Richie will be on Montana Real Estate Today this week. Tune in and learn more about the Bozeman area real estate market and get Richie's take on what is in store for buyers and sellers in 2018.

Here is some info on one of Richie's great listings. See more by clicking here:

Views, Views and more Views! Remarkable, Springhill Area, Custom Home! Featured in Architectural Digest. Private, and out of town on over an acre, yet less than 5 minutes to Costco and Target. Built by custom home builders, Big Timberworks. The entire second floor is the master suite. Stucco and corrugated steel exteriors on the house and garage. The landscaping comes with numerous trees, a waterfall, small pond and a large rock walkway encompassing the property.

January 07, 2018

Brain Nicodemus is our Realtor of the Week!

Last week on the show Dale talked to Brian Nicodemus from Re/Max Rocky Mountain Real Estate which covers Flathead County Montana. Brian is an incredible Realtor. He was the 2012 & 2015 North West Montana REALTOR of the year! Brian has lived in Northwest Montana since 1989 and he absolutely loves everything it has to offer. From great fishing and rafting to the incredible hiking, biking and skiing. As he puts it, "there is no shortage of adventurous things to do". Brian also said "probably the best part of living here is the people. Friendly, caring people who happily give back to their community!"

Brian gave us some great advice about buying and selling real estate in the new year.

He also talked about some of his amazing listings, like:

17 White Bark Lane, Kalispell, MT 59901

Beautifully appointed 4 bedroom 2.5 bath home in popular Glacier Commons. Vaulted ceilings, Open Floor Plan, some Hardwood flooring and Gas Range with 2 ovens. All bedrooms are on the main floor, including a large master suite with walk in closet and large tub. Large bonus room above garage, nicely Landscaped with underground sprinklers and fenced for your furry friends.

You can see a lot more of this incredible home at

Brian also talked about several other great listings so be sure and take a look at all of them at

You can hear the show that Dale did with Brian Nicodemus by clicking here:

Be sure and give Brian Nicodemus and call and let him help you catch your piece of Northwest Montana!! His number is (406) 250-7311.

December 31,2017

This week on the show Dale and Diane talked about how to decide which home is the right home for you. Dale had mentioned that there are several quizzes on the web that you can take that can help you decide what type of home might be right for you and there are also several articles that you might find to be helpful as well. As Dale said on the show some of these quizzes or articles might be more for fun than helpful and of course none of them are going to be able to determine exactly what is right for you so use your own best judgement before making any final decisions. But for now you may want to click a few of the links below and take a quiz or read the article. If anything they may be fun and give you a few ideas or simply do your own search for ideas or quizzes that can help you find your next home that fits you best.



November 26th, 2017

Down Payment Assistance

Diane and Dale Talk to Dave Glaser From Montana/Idaho CDC About Down Payment Assistance

Last week Dave Glaser came on Montana Real Estate Today Radio Show and talked about, in some ways, a dream come true, the gift of a down payment for your next home! Dave talked all about how you can
get your down payment from his organization and NEVER have to pay them back! Click on the Listen to Past Shows button to hear the show if you missed it or click here to go to the Montana/Idaho CDC website to learn more.

November 19th, 2017


Below is the article that Diane and Dale talked about on the show that aired on 11/19/17. Click this link for more info!

10 Biggest Threats Facing Real Estate

10 Biggest Threats Facing Real Estate

Global uncertainty and political polarization are the top issues facing the housing industry in 2017 and 2018, according to The Counselors of Real Estate's annual list of the Top 10 Issues Affecting Real Estate. The list was compiled using feedback from 1,100 real estate advisers from around the world who met at a recent CRE conference.

Many of the issues are interconnected and reflect disruption in the economy and multiple real estate sectors, says 2017 CRE Chairman Scott Muldavin. "Despite this unsettling environment, opportunity remains embedded in every issue on the list," the CRE report notes. Here are the top 10 issues cited in the report.

1.Political polarization and global uncertainty. "Uncertainty about changes to trade, travel, and immigration policy threaten cross-border investing, hospitality properties, retail, and manufacturing supply chains, among other effects," the report notes. "Rising interest rates and retail inflation will make middle-class homeownership that much more difficult. Longer-term implications could be much more severe, as polarization prevents long-term fixes to issues such as infrastructure, affordable housing, local and state pension liabilities, and education."

2. The technology boom. An unprecedented wave of commercial real estate technology innovations are expected to change the way real estate is bought, sold, and managed. Investments in commercial real estate tech startups hit $2.7 billion in 2016. About 1,600 of these startups now exist worldwide. Robots, big data, autonomous vehicles, and online retail are also expected to have a major impact.

3. Generational disruption. "Boomers' and millennials' divergent views of where they live, work, and play increasingly impact the property markets," the report notes. "The generations are crossing paths everywhere: in the workplace, in housing, and at the local bar and grill, intersecting and sharing spaces despite their often disparate priorities when it comes to the built environment."

4. Retail disruption. "The trend toward transforming retail into 'experiences' continues to develop and is offsetting shrinkage in the physical bricks-and-mortar consumer-goods platform," the report says. "'Experiential' retail drives customer traffic to a more diverse and highly participatory environment targeted to a variety of age groups and interests. This sector has transitioned into a kind of 'Omni Channel'-encompassing e-commerce, reduced or repurposed physical elements, and a host of previously unforeseen spaces, both physical and virtual-with a current emphasis evolved from bricks-and-mortar shopping to the timely, efficient transfer of goods from source to inventory to consumer."

5. Infrastructure investment. The private sector is directing significant funds to infrastructure projects, recognizing the need and long-term rewards of investing in roads, bridges, tunnels, ports, and airports. Investors now oversee $376 billion in U.S. infrastructure dollars. "It is clear that the need for infrastructure investment is critical," the report says. "The movement of goods, which involves everything from ports to airports to warehouses to roads, highways and railroads, is further straining an aging and highly vulnerable interior framework. Add to this the need for pipelines, electricity transmission, and water distribution, and the immediacy of infrastructure needs becomes even more pronounced."

6. Housing disparity. "Safe, decent, affordable housing has been shown to have a stabilizing effect on urban economies, crime, and public health," according to the report. "A current lack of inventory has generated a spike in home prices and, as a result, declining affordability for many home buyers, particularly those in lower-income sectors. A critical disparity exists between housing needs and housing supply." The report cites a growing affordability gap and limited availability of housing in locations with significant job growth, such as major cities and coastal regions.

7. Threats to the middle class. In 2007, the average middle-class income was $57,403. Now it hovers below inflation-adjusted levels from nearly two decades ago at $57,909. These income levels have yet to return to their pre-recession highs, and stagnant income growth will continue to press on the middle class.

8. Emerging role of healthcare in real estate. The nation spends more than $3 trillion each year on healthcare costs-about $10,000 per person-which is double the average for developed countries worldwide. "The real estate industry has emerged as a major player to cost-effectively improve people's health," the report notes. "Building occupants are increasingly demanding that the space they inhabit be designed, constructed, and operated in ways that advance positive health outcomes." A growing focus on healthy buildings is emerging, as people spend about 90 percent of their time indoors. Research from the Mayo Clinic shows that healthcare contributes 20 percent to maintaining people's health, while environmental and behavioral factors account for 40 percent.

9. Immigration. As the Trump administration seeks to enact more restrictive immigration laws, some housing leaders are growing concerned about labor shortages in homebuilding. Demographers note that immigrant groups are a source of household formation. "New immigrants tend to rent, boosting demand for multifamily housing, especially in gateway cities," according to the report. "Recent surveys suggest that immigrant populations aspire to own homes and to move relatively freely from cities to suburbs and back in the search for employment. Labor mobility and homeownership rates will be constrained by limiting immigration."

10. Climate change. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration released a report this year that shows sea level rises are expected to more than double from 2013 forecasts-to between 6.6 and 8.6 feet by 2100. "While a potential rise of sea level may seem far in the future, NOAA also estimates that annual frequencies of disruptive and damaging flooding would increase 25-fold with only a 14-inch increase in local sea level rise," according to the report. "Major cities such as Miami, New York, New Orleans, Tampa, and Boston are projected to have the most costly problems, with South Florida and most coastal areas all exposed to differing levels of sea rise risk and cost. The implications of potential sea level rise and related flooding on real estate values is positioned to explode due to dramatic increases in the volume and accessibility of information on the consequences of sea rise."

Source: "Political Polarization, Global Uncertainty Top CRE 2017-2018 Top 10 Issues Affecting Real Estate List," The Counselors of Real Estate (June 14, 2017)