DENVER-This will likely be the worst year in five years for the sale of commercial real estate in the metro area, says Patrick Deveraux, a broker with Cushman & Wakefield. Deveraux projects $1.05 billion in commercial real estate sales this year, about a 14% drop from the $1.216 billion sold last year.

Sales include office, retail and industrial properties that sold for at least $1 million.

This year will likely be the lowest year for sales since 1996, when only $885 million in properties, sold, he says.

In 1998, sales peaked when a number of real estate investment trust, such as Chicago’s Sam Zell’s Equities Offices Properties went on a buying spree, snapping up a total of $2.215 billion worth of properties.

Deveraux tells he doesn’t expect a huge rush in closings to push up the number of sales before year end. In fact, he says the number may even be lower than the $1.05 billion he projects.

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