Often utilised as a way of counteracting an abstruse statement, the well-known phrase “If it looks like a duck, swims like a duck and quacks like a duck, it probably is” should sit at the forefront of an investor’s strategic decision-making in times of uncertainty.
The allure of high annuity style returns that the globe now hunts can often lead many investors chasing a ‘value-add’ or ‘opportunistic’ type of investment that is anything but. If an investor undertakes something as simple as a ‘duck test’, this easily formable type of inductive reasoning can often lead many into making the best strategic acquisitions.
The growing uncertainty of the euro zone’s framework, the growing public debt amassing around the world and the growing revisions to global GDP growth rates mean that investors need to be at their most vigilant. If, as an investor, you receive an offer that seems too good to be true, then more than likely it is too good to be true.
Nevertheless, it remains paramount that investors continue to challenge normalcy in a commercial real estate market that has entered a ‘new norm’. Investors need to undertake careful due diligence and be surrounded by quality decision makers and insightful interpreters of information.
Warren Buffet, widely regarded as one of the most successful investors in the world, was famously quoted as saying “be fearful when others are greedy and greedy when others are fearful”. Undoubtedly, however, he does his homework on the investment to be greedy about.
When looking for the right investment, it is often comprehensive market research that will be a powerful tool in an investor’s asset acquisition armoury. At Jones Lang LaSalle we have an extensive list of publications, presentations and professionals dedicated to this very function. We were recently awarded the top global real estate advisor and consultant in the Euromoney Real Estate Awards 2011 including first place for Research in Asia and various individual countries including New Zealand. We were also named the region’s Best Property Consultancy at the Asia Pacific Property Awards 2011 in association with Bloomberg Television, with New Zealand scoring again at the country level. So we feel that we are positioned well to give guidance and insight – even if it at first we ask if the asset ‘quacks like a duck’…
About the author
Chris Dibble is Associate Director of Research and Consulting for Jones Lang LaSalle in New Zealand.