This section is from the book "Practical Real Estate Methods For Broker, Operator & Owner", by Thirty Experts. Also available from Amazon: Practical Real Estate Methods for Broker, Operator, Owner.
The panic through which we have recently passed, which was one of the most trying in the history of this country, I think, affected real estate values less than we thought possible. Of the hundreds of real estate companies in the City of New York, operating in all classes of property - from those operating in vacant lots on the northerly undeveloped part of the island to the larger companies engaged in the business of improving and operating some of the most valuable parcels of real estate in the lower part of the city - I can recall only one fair-sized corporation which failed, and that was in the nature of a private building company. No other business in New York, I believe, stood up under the trying conditions of 1907 and 1908 with better success than real estate and building companies. Yet for nearly a year before the panic the largest lenders on real estate mortgages were practically out of the market. And, moreover, during that year the builders of large apartment houses, lofts and mercantile buildings and office buildings were able to borrow money on mortgage from practically but one source, the Metropolitan Life Insurance Company, which seemed to be the only life insurance company with funds for real estate loans. The other large companies put their funds mainly in railroad bonds in which they had already a large interest.