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EP 175: Industrial Intelligence with Justin Smith

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Kevin Lawton

On this episode, I was joined by Senior Vice President at Lee & Associates, Justin Smith. Justin is also the author of the newly released book “Industrial Intelligence, the Executive’s Guide for Making Informed Commercial Real Estate Decisions.” I have been wanting to get someone from the commercial real estate world on the show to discuss the warehousing market and Justin was the perfect guest with tons of experience and industry knowledge. We discuss the current state of the warehousing market, micro-warehousing, and his book Industrial Intelligence.

Key Takeaways

  • Justin has a long background in the commercial real estate world and has been focused primarily on clients in the supply chain world so he is well versed when it comes to the warehousing real estate market. He gives some great insights into what is going on in the markets right now and how the Southern California market, in particular, is developing. I found it very interesting how space is at a premium in these markets and developers are taking older warehouses that are not covering all the usable land and expanding them or tearing them down and building new. With a shortage of space, it is interesting to see how people will get creative to get warehousing into ideal locations.
  • As you have heard on the show, I have talked to a few guests about the concept of micro-warehouses and micro-fulfillment but I have long been thinking there is an opportunity in some of the vacant retail locations that are closer to consumers. Justin and I get into a discussion about this and where broker’s minds are when it comes to this idea. Interestingly enough he talks about how developers are starting to look at how to design warehouses to fit into more populated areas and the complications that come from that including how to get trucks to second stories and the massive amounts of weight that will need to be supported. When it comes to micro-warehouses popping up in your local abandoned strip mall, Justin feels that it is somewhat far off and even though it would provide better delivery times to consumers those same consumers would not be happy with additional truck traffic or warehouses in their neighborhoods. It will be interesting to see how it develops.
  • The book that Justin just recently released, “Industrial Intelligence, the Executive’s Guide for Making Informed Commercial Real Estate Decisions,” is a great idea and effort by Justin. He explains how he came up with the idea and what he really wanted to be able to provide for executives to make better-informed decisions when it comes to real estate. It is a go-to guide and I feel something that is definitely necessary to read when looking to expand on your company’s real estate as that is not something you do every day. Being able to dive into some of the details through the book and understand some parts of the transaction a little more will certainly give you a better knowledge base going into any decisions. I recommend picking up the book here and reaching out to Justin if you have any questions about commercial real estate.

Listen to the episode below and let us know if you’re getting the book in the comments.

The New Warehouse Podcast

EP 175: Industrial Intelligence