SCOTTSDALE, AZ-Lenders are uninterested in financing off-campusmedical office buildings unless the projects have hospitalsponsorship, according to a panel of experts who spoke at the3rd Annual RealShare Medical Office Buildings conferencehere at the Four Seasons Resort.

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During the closing panel titled “Learn from the Lenders,"panelists discussed the availability of debt and equity. AndrewDow, a shareholder with Winstead PC, moderated the panel, whichalso included: Brian Jenkins, senior vice president of Savills LLC;Brent Tharp, senior vice president of GE Healthcare FinancialServices; and Charlie Williams, founder and CEO of KeystoneCapital.

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In general, on-campus MOBs are more attractive to both investorsand lenders, according to Tharp. He pointed out that on on-campusMOBs are more likely to stay full and able to attract new tenantsto backfill vacant space, especially in today's economicclimate.

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In comparison, off-campus MOBs are more vulnerable – especiallythose without hospital sponsorship. “A straight off-campus deal islike doing a suburban office deal,” Jenkins explains. “I thinkthat’s how lending institutions will look at you. We start theconversation with the hospital sponsorship.”

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Williams admitted that most of life company lenders preferon-campus deals and shy away from other MOBs deals. “Our comfortzone is on-campus,” he says. “We’ll look at off-campus, but we’repretty narrowly focused. We’re chasing something that is right downthe middle of the road.”

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