According to a Bloomberg report, analysts have warned that a $1.5 Trillion commercial real estate crash is coming.
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Almost $1.5 trillion of US commercial real estate debt comes due for repayment before the end of 2025. The big question facing those borrowers is who’s going to lend to them?
“Refinancing risks are front and center” for owners of properties from office buildings to stores and warehouses, Morgan Stanley analysts including James Egan wrote in a note this past week. “The maturity wall here is front-loaded. So are the associated risks.”
The investment bank estimates office and retail property valuations could fall as much as 40% from peak to trough, increasing the risk of defaults.
Adding to the headache, small and regional banks — the biggest source of credit to the industry last year — have been rocked by deposit outflows following the demise of Silicon Valley Bank, raising concerns that will crimp their ability to provide finance to borrowers.
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The wall of debt is set to get worse before it gets better. Maturities climb for the coming four years, peaking at $550 billion in 2027, according to the MS note. Banks also own more than half of the agency commercial mortgage-backed securities — bonds supported by property loans and issued by US government-sponsored entities such as Fannie Mae — increasing their exposure to the sector.
“The role that banks have played in this ecosystem, not only as lenders but also as buyers,” will compound the wave of refinancing coming due, the analysts wrote.
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