I recently hired James Bishop with Accelerated Revenue as a consultant to help generate and manage revenue growth for my appraisal firm. During our time together we discussed a principle in Stephen Covey’s book “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People”. I haven’t read the book but apparently, Mr. Covey contrasts people who perceive a world with bountiful resources with those who perceive a world of scarcity.
Our discussion came to mind when researching articles for an appraisal we are currently performing of a building that will be integrated into the Airbnb network. I found a number of articles regarding opposition by local officials and also from property owners within the lodging industry who rightly perceive Airbnb as a threat. Their contention is that homes or property occupied by Airbnb users should be subject to similar zoning regulations and taxation as those that are officially recognized as being in the lodging industry.
I don’t disagree that equity demands a level playing field. What’s good for the goose is good for the gander. However, far too often this initial emotional response by those who perceive a world of scarcity leads to protectionist regulations that stifle competition and innovation. Perhaps it is simply human to want to keep something that someone else wants to take away.
This has me pondering how the world might look differently if more people perceived a world of bounty rather than one of scarcity. After all, those who founded Airbnb appear to have perceived the world as bountiful with surplus housing that could fill the gap when local hotel rooms were unavailable to meet demand and which could also satiate the desire of the more adventurous traveler to experience local culture.
The rapid expansion of Airbnb and its impact on local commercial real estate is one of a growing number of examples of how the internet is impacting the value of commercial real estate, a topic I discussed in another blog post, particularly as it relates to industrial and retail properties.
I’m interested in your feedback. What are your thoughts about how the internet is impacting commercial real estate?