Joel Ross is principal of Citadel Realty Advisors, successor to Ross Properties, the investment banking and real estate financing firm he launched in 1981. A Wharton School graduate, Ross began his career on Wall Street as an investment banker in 1965.
As the weeks move on, occupancy continues to be negative as it has for most of the year. Recent numbers show a decline of 1.5%, and revenue per available room continues well below the levels projected
While revenue per available room exceeded what I predicted in 2012, it was primarily because some of what lies ahead is slower to arrive than I had thought. The bubble is growing, and unless Washington—and especially President Obama—act to reduce entitlements and overall spending and accomplishes true tax reform, the result of the bursting bubble someday will be very ugly.
While there has been a new start to CMBS lending and hotel lending in general, do not get lulled into believing it is all sunny and you can easily refinance at 5% or less. There are only a few lenders who are active.
I have made a major issue of what metrics should be looked at by hotel industry prognosticators, and the need to look at a wide variety of things all over the world to really try to get a good sense of where we are headed.