How to Get Involved in Retail Investing

Retail property is one of the most sought after investments around today. Out of the four asset classes on the market, investors are paying large sums for small, multi-tenant and single-tenant retail properties in locations across the globe.

With such hot demand, it’s hard to get your foot in the door. That’s why I’ve put my practice in writing to present one valuable piece of advice to aspiring investors looking to network and make deals in retail.

Become a member of the International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC).

The global trade organization is comprised of an estimated 60,000 members, mostly representing developers, agents, lenders, investors, brokers and more. Membership tacks on a price tag of  $800 per company and $100 for additional members each year.

In my experience, ICSC is the only organization that’s successful in connecting investors to lucrative deals in some of the largest metro areas of the United States, as well as other hotspots in nations across the globe. The organization hosts a multitude of trade shows, which act as a valuable resource for investors hoping to gather information on the latest trends or biggest names in the industry.

The most prized event of the year is called RECon, which, in the United States, occurs in Las Vegas in May. Nearly 30,000 people from around the world show up to the days-long event to complete an estimated 60 to 70 percent of all recorded retail lease transactions nationwide per year.

ICSC convention in vegas

Vendors line the halls of the nearly two-million-square-foot facility to provide developers, brokers and investors resources and connections to deals already set up months in advance. Many participating retailers publish reports detailing lists of preferences and plans for brokers and developers looking to bring them deals.

It’s a great place to network. RECon is one of the few times where you’ll get to meet representative brokers from large retail conglomerates. Now, my rolodex is full of some of the most valuable names in the industry. In fact, I’ve put together entire centers with the contacts I’ve received from these events.

Really, you don’t need to look any further to break into the retail leasing market. Become a member — you won’t look back.

To learn more about the International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC) visit, www.icsc.org.

Troy Muljat

Troy Muljat is a Washington State certified commercial appraiser and broker with over 25 years of experience in the commercial real estate industry.

He specializes in brokerage, leasing, property management, development, and commercial appraisal.