The Real Deal’s September 2021 Issue Is Live

The Real Deal’s September issue looks at climate change, virtual real estate, the commodification of homebuying and so much more.

The Real Deal’s September issue is live for digital subscribers and soon to hit mailboxes across the country.

“Water, water everywhere, and not a drop to drink,” is where we’ve found ourselves this month. With fires to the left of us and hurricanes to the right, we’re stuck in the middle of a climate reckoning.

This month, we’ll take you to Wall Street, the Metaverse and perhaps even the moon with in-depth stories like the following:

Rising sea levels, coastal flooding and wildfires have changed the homebuying conversation from, “Can I see the beach from my house?” to, “Will the house still exist in a few decades?” or, “Can I breathe the air?” Without coordinated efforts at the federal level, risk mitigation has been piecemeal. Individuals and communities have taken to building stilts and levees to prevent damage from further catastrophes, but these are but short-term solutions — after all, when the levee breaks, you’ll have no place to stay.

As recently as last fall, we were still asking the same question of iBuying that we ask about all things new and shiny in tech: “Does it scale?” A year later, the answer is a resounding yes. But as institutional-scale investors transform homebuying from a peer-to-peer transaction into an algorithm-driven machine that increasingly bypasses the individual, the ramifications for residential real estate are immense.

The Delta variant has tenants and landlords bemoaning the slow “return” to the office as employees drag their feet and fearfully reload their transit cards. Little is certain as flexible work arrangements threaten a significant impact on the value of office buildings. One truth that is emerging, however, is that so-called “trophy properties” are more attractive than ever.

Once the domain of science fiction writers, gamers, NFT owners and other such internet denizens, the Metaverse has found its way into real estate — or more accurately, real estate has found its way into the Metaverse. Lured by enormous profit potential, established players in an industry quite literally built on brick-and-mortar are rushing to invest in the up-and-coming world of virtual real estate.

Flush with cash in a nationwide housing rebound, major brokerage houses like Elliman, eXp, Realogy and Compass are feeling the pressure to stay ahead of the curve market-wise with smart bets — not exactly the worst problem to have. Still, these housing behemoths need to stay mindful of the fickle nature of markets. Here’s where they’re doubling down.

A frank conversation with artist-turned-architect Nancy Ruddy about what constitutes good taste (“Some people love high-tops, and some people like Manolo Blahniks with 8-inch heels, and they’re both fabulous”), shattering the glass ceiling in her field (“We have a firm of 52 percent women, which I’m very proud of”), working with her spouse (“Four times a year, I want to kill him … But other than that, it’s really wonderful”).

… And much more! Subscribe today and check out the new issue here.

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