Is it a good time to invest in Commercial Real Estate Yet?

Nobody I know has a crystal ball but lets look at the stats, prices are starting to tick upward, inventories are beginning to go down. It has been said the commercial market tends to lag residential by about 18 months or so, I don’t know how accurate that is but is does seem to me the commercial market dropped about 18 months after  the residential market and I remember here in the southeast valley of the Phoenix market a couple of years ago there was a high home vacancy rate, then investors seemed buy them up at low prices and now the housing inventories are less than 2 month supply and prices (unlike nationally) have been increasing, incidentally rental rates have increased in double digits over the past year.
So the question is will the commercial real estate market in the next two years follow the same path and if so what are you going to do about it? While there is still an abundance of commercial properties in inventory the SF of office property in the Phoenix area is down over 23% year to year, while sales prices have been down (similar to the housing 18 months ago) how long will this continue before prices are forced upward due to a lack of inventory with increased demand it should also be noted that asking commercial lease rates are up slightly ( just under 1% valley wide) over the past 3 months, granted not double digits, but what could it be like in a couple more years?
If your not overjoyed by the performance of you 201K or 401k plan, it may be a good time to look into setting up a self-directed IRA to hold Commercial Property.

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