On Wednesday, May 5, 2021, David Wolfe, Esq. joined regional experts for “Informing Investments: A Suburban Migration Cycle” as part of BisNow’s 2021 Digital Summit. Speakers across the investment, development, and supporting real estate industries commented on the challenges and opportunities currently facing New Jersey’s real estate market.

The expert panel included Eran Polack, CEO-NY and Co-Founder of HAP Investments; Peter Cocoziello, Jr., Principal and Managing Director for Advance Realty; Chris Luo, Managing Director for Willton Investment Management; Jose Cruz, Senior Managing Director at JLL Capital Markets, Americas; and Jennifer Mazawey, Partner at Genova Burns.

Wolfe explained how, especially in the past several months, more capital is coming into New Jersey from neighboring markets like New York City. As such, he has been having significantly more “introductory” calls with investors new to the New Jersey market.  His main advice: “Making generalizations can get you in serious trouble.”

A major focus of the panel was the need for property tax certainty.  Mr. Cocoziello explained investors “need to make sure that there’s certainty in what the tax environment looks like” for commercial property investments.

This is what has made investor interest in PILOTs (Payment In Lieu of Taxes) and related incentives so attractive to commercial investors. “That tax conversation, that PILOT conversation comes up on every call,” said Cruz. As head of JLL’s New Jersey office, Cruz noted that many developers simply cannot proceed when a few strokes of a pen can change investments substantially. Echoing this sentiment, Wolfe explained the need for greater understanding of the PILOT environment. He also emphasized that New Jersey’s greatest strength is also its weakness: with over 500 municipalities, there can be no general rules for projecting your investment’s property tax burden.

Wolfe also singled out the life sciences sector as a budding opportunity area as of late.”New Jersey has long been hamstrung by not being able to offer any incentives,” said Wolfe, but working with and educating municipalities on these vital projects is what will keep New Jersey’s real estate market a competitive environment for current and future investors.

About the Speakers

  • Eran Polack, CEO-NY and Co-Founder of HAP Investments, a New York-based real estate investment group that specializes in the development of residential and commercial properties including 500 Summit Avenue in Jersey City.
  • Peter Cocoziello, Jr., Principal and Managing Director for Advance Realty, responsible for the identification and execution of new investments, and active in the company’s asset management and development groups.
  • Chris Luo, Managing Director for Willton Investment Management with primarily responsibility of implementing the firm’s investment strategy and business development initiatives.
  • Jose Cruz, Senior Managing Director at JLL Capital Markets, Americas.
  • Jennifer Mazawey, Partner at Genova Burns, is a member of the Firm’s Commercial Real Estate & Redevelopment Law, Environmental Law, Construction Law & Litigation, Land Use & Approvals, and Education Law Practice Groups.

Property tax appeal can increase the value of your real estate holdings.

Commercial property owners new to New Jersey require results-oriented representation when appealing property tax burdens and negotiating with municipalities and tax assessors. Skoloff & Wolfe understands the intricacies of commercial property tax valuations on a granular level and can help your organization discern the differences between real-world value and Tax Court value when it comes to commercial properties. The results can significantly increase the value of your overall real estate holdings.

To learn how Skoloff & Wolfe can help you assess your property tax appeal opportunities, call (973) 232-2986 and discover why our track record of success is unparalleled among our peers.

About BisNow

Bisnow is the world’s leading B2B platform serving the commercial real estate industry. From events and news to branded content and recruiting solutions, Bisnow reaches more than 11 million readers and hosts more than 650 events each year. Operating in over 50 local markets across the U.S., Canada, the UK and Ireland, our products inform and connect the commercial real estate business to do more business.