Ian Ritter is online content manager at GRS Group

Ian Ritter is online content manager at GRS Group

Several professionals who work in the commercial real estate industry have concerns when it comes to the economy. But they shouldn’t worry so much, according to an economist at the recent Connect Los Angeles conference.

Chris Thornberg, a founding partner of Beacon Economics had a lot to say about this during a keynote speech at the debut event of Connect Conferences, which was highly attended and sponsored by GRS Group, as well as many of its major clients.

So, what DO we need to be concerned about? His message was that competition from China, the educational choices made by officials and bad financial regulations are the biggest threats. Thornberg stressed that commercial real estate executives need to get more involved in the political process.

But the things that many are concentrated on that we SHOULDN’T worry about include the strength of the dollar, student debt, the drought, and interest rates.

And even though California can be a state that is not always commercial real estate friendly, he said it really has not impacted the industry. Residential real estate has continued to make progress; and the Inland Empire, which suffered hard during the recession, is the third-fastest-growing economy in the United States.

Plus, there is a lot of capital out there that needs to be invested which could increase asset prices.

“You’re in a great state,” Thornberg said. “You’re going to make a great deal of money over the next couple of years.”