Congressman pitching high-risk lifeline for CRE

A real estate financier turned U.S. representative is leading the charge to give the commercial real estate industry a lifeline — albeit a risky one for the government. Texas Republican Rep. Nicholas Van Taylor plans to introduce a bill that would authorize the Treasury Department to provide real estate investors hit by the pandemic with low-cost financing to support their properties, according to real estate attorneys briefed on the proposal. “The idea is that the real estate industry is experiencing real pain. This would help get through this rough patch,” Bruce Stachenfeld, chairman of the New York real estate law firm Duval & Stachenfeld, told The Real Deal. The Helping Open Properties Endeavor (HOPE) Act of 2020 aims to help avoid a wave of foreclosures, according to Stachenfeld, whose firm was briefed on the proposal by Van Taylor’s staff. The program would be open to investors in good standing before the pandemic hit, with no loan defaults before March 1. It would provide real estate owners with something similar to a very low-cost loan: Borrowers could take on as much as 10 percent of their existing debt at a rate as low as 2.5 percent. That could be a boon for struggling real estate investments, particularly when traditional rescue capital charges around 10 percent, industry experts said. Click to read more at the