President of Atlanta-based Ackerman & Co., Kris Miller sets the strategic direction for the firm’s investment, management and leasing initiatives. Miller joined the firm in 1996, and during his tenure, Ackerman & Co. has experienced significant growth and has solidified its reputation as one of the most prominent real estate firms in the Southeastern United States.
In this Four on Friday, Hartman Simons got a chance to chat with Miller about the state of the Atlanta commercial real estate market and his career in the industry.
Give us a brief overview of the services offered by Ackerman & Co.
Ackerman is a full-service commercial real estate company. We represent tenants seeking space, landlords renting space, and manage owned and third-party space. We also buy, sell and develop commercial real estate properties.
What is your take on how the Atlanta commercial real estate market has recovered from the Great Recession?
The recovery of the Atlanta commercial real estate market from the recession of 2008 has been gradual. Positive absorption of industrial space began in 2011, followed by the positive absorption of office space a year later. In both cases, those markets had endured net negative absorption for a longer period than any time in Atlanta’s history. The recovery now seems to be gaining momentum and spreading from the submarkets where it began to a metro-wide phenomenon.
What is it about commercial real estate that makes it such a satisfying career for you?
Commercial real estate is satisfying because the effort of your labor is tangible: you can touch it, see it, visit it, and explain to friends and colleagues what you do for a living.
If you could give one piece of advice to someone just beginning his or her commercial real estate career, what would it be?
Get experience as a tenant broker. All the value in commercial real estate is created when a broker brings a tenant to a landlord and a lease is signed. The better you understand this process, the more successful you will be in this business.