Each Wednesday, The Wrap presents a compilation of recent noteworthy commercial real estate stories from a variety of publications. Below are links to five stories that caught our eyes in recent days.

CRE Lending by Banks Surpasses Pre-Recession Levels by Mark Heschmeyer of CoStar.

Key excerpt:

“The improvement in CRE lending is also reflected in the declining delinquency level of bank loans. According to the FDIC, noncurrent loan balances improved for a 17th consecutive quarter, falling by $13.4 billion (6.9 percent) during the three months ended June 30. At the end of the quarter, the industry’s noncurrent loan rate was 2.24 percent, the lowest level since second quarter 2008.”

 

Smart Apartment Homes by Joshua Ayers of Multi-Housing News.

Key excerpt:

“Companies like Nest and Control4 are moving both single- and multi-family dwellers toward that type of technology, which is helping to usher in the new era of the smart home that enables residents to control almost all aspects of the home environment, such as climate, lighting and security, from a single interface. What’s more, this rapidly growing smart-home field is in the midst of being able to control these interior elements from mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets, allowing the home to become more efficient, which ultimately amounts to increased savings for renters, and increased NOI for owners and property managers.”

 

Real Estate Industry Needs Better Integration of Resilience by Archana Pyati of Urban Land Magazine.

Key excerpt:

“While real estate investors have always paid attention to earthquakes, floods, and other natural disasters that create uncertainty for their portfolios, few speak explicitly about ‘resilience’ as a characteristic they’re looking for when underwriting properties, according to a panel of investment leaders at ULI’s Building the Resilient City: Risks and Opportunities conference held in San Francisco September 4–5.

‘Just like sustainability was a new word in our real estate investment vocabulary a decade ago, resilience is just beginning to enter our vocabulary,’ said ULI Chairman Lynn Thurber, chairman of LaSalle Investment Management, which holds $50 billion in global real estate assets.”

 

The Facts About Self-Storage Tenant Insurance vs. Protection Plans by Matt Schaller of Inside Self-Storage.

Key excerpt:

“The biggest difference between tenant-insurance programs and tenant-protection plans is licensing. Fact: All 50 states have insurance rules and regulations to which self-storage operators must adhere. Of those, only 16 allow storage owner/operators to legally sell tenant insurance under a limited license. In the other states, your insurance provider may be operating under an ‘assumption.’ However, anyone at a storage facility who offers tenant insurance to a customer would be required to be a licensed insurance agent. That would include the storage owner, should he ever need to fill in for the manager. On the other hand, a protection plan is not insurance, therefore, no licensing is required.”

 

GRESB 2014 Survey Shows Improvement in Sustainability in Real Estate Industry by Sarah Borchersen-Keto of REIT.com.

Key excerpt:

“Results from the 2014 survey indicated that in the last year, the commercial real estate industry cut energy consumption by nearly 1 percent. Additionally, water consumption fell by 2.3 percent. Carbon emissions were cut 0.3 percent for the year. GRESB said the results show ‘significant improvement’ of participants’ individual scores. GRESB noted that organizations appear to be more aware of the importance of implementing policies and of proper monitoring and reporting on metrics.”