Here is an excerpt from a recent Bloomberg article that indicates a continued interest by the Warren Buffett organization in capturing good real estate investments now while the market is still down.
Berkshire, Leucadia Join to Acquire Capmark Assets (Update3)
By Andrew Frye and Pierre Paulden
Sept. 2 (Bloomberg) — Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway Inc. and Leucadia National Corp. agreed to pay as much as $490 million for Capmark Financial Group Inc.’s loan-servicing and mortgage business in a bet on the U.S. real estate market.
The partnership of Omaha, Nebraska-based Berkshire and New York-based Leucadia was paid $40 million by Capmark to enter into the agreement, the Horsham, Pennsylvania-based lender said today in a statement. The deal gives Capmark the right to sell the assets later to the venture, known as Berkadia III LLC. Capmark may file for bankruptcy after a $1.6 billion second- quarter loss, the lender said in a separate statement today.
Berkshire has been increasing investments in the U.S. real estate market, buying shares of banks including Wells Fargo & Co., the No. 1 U.S. mortgage lender this year. Yesterday, Berkshire’s real-estate brokerage unit announced it acquired a Chicago-based agency to expand in Illinois.
The Capmark deal “fits with the real estate brokerage they bought,” said Gerald Martin, a finance professor at American University’s Kogod School of Business in Washington who has studied Buffett’s investing history. “The market’s down. It’s time to buy.”
With some of the big investment organizations and their top management beginning to re-invest assets in the real estate market, now may be the time to join them and secure a property while prices are down.