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Don’t let culture shock affect your move

Culture shock is a hurdle many people face whether they’re moving out of state or abroad. It’s difficult to adjust to an entirely new environment, especially for homeowners who have lived in the same neighborhood for years. There’s no easy solution for dealing with culture shock, and it ultimately causes some new residents to return to their old homes.

You shouldn’t give up on your new location simply because it’s an adjustment. Relocation is the perfect opportunity to embrace a new lifestyle and environment. Read on for a few tips that can help you overcome your culture shock as soon as your relocation movers are finished unloading all of your possessions.

Give yourself some space
A new culture can be overwhelming during the initial stages of settling in to new abode. Residents have to process a great deal of information and learn to cope with many unfamiliar amenities.

Give yourself time to adapt and overcome your culture shock. The Daily Muse, a career advice website, recommends exploring an area on your own so you can find cultural aspects that match your interests. Walk around your neighborhood and visit local stores and restaurants to understand your new environment.

Seek new friends
It’s easy to call home and speak with old friends about your loneliness and how you feel about a new culture. The occasional chat with your loved ones can be therapeutic and help you find your emotional center, but you must also prepare to limit your connections.

To combat culture shock, develop a local social network and don’t rely on your far-flung friends and family members. Find fun activities and introduce yourself to your peers. For instance, concerts and sports are great places to meet new friends who share some of your interests so you can break the ice with conversation about the event.

Keep an open mind
Culture shock is the result of a major change, but it can be particularly difficult to overcome if you have a closed mind. A negative attitude can make adapting to your new environment a Herculean task and prevent you from being happy in your new home.

Remember why you moved in the first place and look for positive features of your new environment. Make a concerted effort to enjoy yourself and try new activities that weren’t readily available in your new home. You might end up finding a new hobby and making lifelong friends.

Brew Detroit Opens in 68,000SF Corktown Facility, Includes Tasting Room

Brew Detroit LLC — a 68,000-square-foot, Corktown brewing facility led by Keith Sirois, CEO of Big Boy International — opens today, with the goals of creating jobs, supporting local breweries, and bringing manufacturing back to the city.

“We built a state-of-the-art facility that will be brewing, canning, bottling, and kegging beer,” says David Crawford, a member of Brew Detroit and a spokesman for the facility that carries a maximum capacity of about 1 million cases of beer.

Located in the former home of Detroit Ball Bearing Co., 1401 Abbott St., Brew Detroit is a place where other breweries looking to expand their projects can utilize the facility’s resources. Crawford says the business would like to start out with four or five collaborations.

The facility serves as a brewing home to Atwater Brewery, BADASS American Lager, Motor City Brewing Works, and Big Red Beverages. Erika Brockberg, director of retail operations, says it was one of the few well-maintained buildings that had enough space and high enough ceilings to fit Brew Detroit’s brewing equipment.

“Because of the craft beer boom, brewers need a lot of capital to get started,” Crawford says. “Brew Detroit collaborates with breweries to help lessen the capital needed.”

The facility also has a 7,000-square-foot tasting room, which keeps 10 beers on tap and uses a two-barrel brewing system for keeping small batches, allowing for a constant rotation of creative and seasonal craft brews.

Though they do not serve food, a variety of local food trucks will be on-site during weekend hours. Guests can order carryout from nearby businesses using menus provided at the bar.

“The way we are functioning, if the taproom can pay for the rent (of the 68,000-square-foot building), then we are in good shape,” Crawford says. “Right now, we aren’t making money, (although) we should break even in six months.”

Between the manufacturing facility and taproom, Brew Detroit has 30 employees and expects to grow to 50 employees by the end of 2017.

“A benefit of the collaborative efforts is that you get to learn from the best brewers in town,” says Brockberg.

For more information about Brew Detroit, which will offer public tours on Saturdays, visit

On a Roll, U.S. Office Market Demand Expected to Stay Strong Through 2016

Tenants and Investors Show Strong Preference for Newer Buildings in CBDs
January 28, 2015

With vacancies falling and rents rising in growing numbers of submarkets and slices within the U.S. office sector, demand for office space is expected to remain at post-recession highs for the next two years, according to CoStar Portfolio Strategy analysts recapping the office market’s past year performance.

“2014 was a great year for the office market,” said Walter Page, director of office research, during CoStar’s State of The U.S. Office Market 2014 Review and Forecast. “The keystone mark is that net absorption was up 42% from a year earlier. The fourth quarter in particular was very strong, with over 30 million square feet of net absorption.”

Net absorption of office space rose from 64 million square feet in 2013 to 91 million square feet last year, a 42% increase. Also, the amount of office space absorbed for the year was nearly double the level of new office space added to the market.

Over the next two years, CoStar expects annual absorption to be very similar to 2014, in the 90 million square foot range. The level of construction deliveries should ramp up, as rents have increased across the board and vacancy numbers have continued to tighten, helping make the case for new development.

The strong demand suggests that occupiers have gradually slowed the trend of shrinking square foot-per-employee office footprints, and the shadow supply of empty office space left over from the Great Recession is diminishing as growth moves forward at a very strong clip, added Page, who was joined in the presentation by U.S. Market Research Manager Aaron Jodka and Managing Director Hans Nordby.

The national office vacancy fell 70 basis points from 12% to 11.3% in 2014, the largest decline in office vacancy since the end of the recession.

Vacancies are declining across the board across markets, submarkets and building types and quality levels, with the exception of medical office properties, where vacancies are holding steady at a historically solid 9.6%.

Many markets are now falling below the national vacancy average, with nearly every metro showing year over year declines, with the exception of Washington, D.C., which saw a slight increase, mainly because of strong construction activity.

As demand shifted into high gear during 2014, the percentage of office submarkets with declining vacancies rose to its highest point of the recovery, Jodka said.

“It’s not just a few energy or tech markets or CBDs, this is a feel-good story across the country,” added Nordby.

The vacancy recovery has been particularly strong among newer properties seeing the highest demand by tenants, said Jodka. While buildings 2008 and newer have seen vacancies plunge from a high of 45% in 2008 to nearly 10% in the fourth quarter of 2014, older generation space from the 1980s, much of it located in less desirable outer-ring suburban submarkets, hasn’t recovered at all.

“That’s not where tenants want to be,” Nordby said. “Oftentimes, they want to be in the CBD or the very closest-in suburban submarkets.”

Markets where demand for new properties is especially strong include Minneapolis, Orange County, CA; Nashville, Dallas/Fort Worth and the East Bay area of San Francisco. New product is logging higher vacancy rates in markets where demand still isn’t quite matching the rate of new construction or are still dealing with an overhang from the last cycle, such as Miami, San Jose, Los Angeles, Washington D.C. and Portland.

Building upon that flight-to-quality thesis is the rising demand for newer 4 and 5 Star space, which is seeing double the rate of absorption of less quality space, Page said. Demand for high-quality space grew 2% from 2013 to 2014, versus 0.9% for 1, 2 and 3-star space.

“Another interesting thing is that at this point in the market cycle is that this flight to quality continues to grow,” Page said. “At this point in the previous cycle, it was not as strong. As tenant footprints shrink, it’s a lot easier to tell them, we’re going to put you in nice space rather than not-nice space.”

Another emerging trend is after seeing most of the action in suburban markets over the last few quarters, activity in CBDs is starting to pick up significant demand and grabbing its fair share of the market, Page said.

Overall demand strength has given owners the confidence to raise rental rates. Rent growth, which closed 2013 up 3.3% year over year, performed even better last year, logging 3.7% growth, nearly double the rate of inflation.

Construction continues to stay in check in most metros. Deliveries of new space rose 9% from 43 million square feet in 2013 to 47 million sf in 2014, very balanced at around half the rate of net absorption. The under-construction pipeline of 81 million square feet a year ago increased a whopping 32% in 2014 to 107 million square feet, 18 million square feet of the activity in Houston.