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WASHINGTON, DC-GVA Advantis has put out its findings for 2007 and as the market expected, results for Q4 were not pretty. Officially, investment sales–which came in at $2 billion–registered a slight increase from Q3, which tallied at $1.6 billion. However, the bulk of Q4 sales were due to Republic Property Trust’s $850-million acquisition by Malvern, PA-based Liberty Property Trust, according to Tonya Ginter, director of research and marketing for GVA Advantis and author of the report.

DC investment sales in Q1 registered $3.8 billion; in Q2 they were $6.1 billion–another jump due to a number of portfolio transactions during that time period. The culprit, of course, is the credit crunch, which has caused sellers to hold off on listing properties and buyers to be more aggressive in their pursuit of those few assets that are on the market. Financing as well has become more difficult, even for trophy properties–evidenced by CBRE Capital Markets’ difficulty in arranging a $50-million acquisition loan for the Sun Trust Mid Atlantic headquarters sale.

John Germano, senior managing director in Washington-Baltimore region for CB Richard Ellis, tells GlobeSt.com that the bottom will not drop out in investment sales for the District because “fundamentally this is an unbelievably good market. If you could invest anywhere in world and you want edlow risk–DC is as low risk as you can get.” The type of investors and the type of assets in which they are investing, though, may change. Right now, he says, there is a lot of capital sitting on the sidelines waiting for a shift. When they do start investing, they are unlikely to gravitate toward the value add opportunities that have attracted many investors in the past, he says. “The pendulum is swinging away from risk to core assets.”

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