As a youngster John Hentschel would learn real estate at his father’s side by helping the career government real estate executive and appraiser measure properties and notate property acquisition plats.

While attending college, he completed real estate appraisal and brokerage courses and made good use of the experience gained from his father by working as a government real estate agent acquiring rights of way for the I-95 expressway through Baltimore and then as a licensed agent for a Baltimore real estate brokerage company.

A Multi-Discipline Career from Multiple Perspectives

After graduating from college, he established his own appraisal and investment property brokerage firm which he successfully operated for a decade until being tapped by the City of Baltimore to head its 14 member Department of Real Estate which was responsible for property acquisition, disposition, leasing and management on behalf of the City. For the next decade, as the City’s chief real estate executive and its youngest department head, he served as a trusted adviser to three mayoral administrations making significant contributions to Baltimore’s redevelopment renaissance as a key figure in many of the City’s most complex real estate development and financing transactions. In addition to heading the City’s efforts to resolve and recover millions of dollars from defaulted developer loans and guarantees on major attractions, entertainment centers, and hotel projects, he was the lead negotiator for the City’s largest Public-Private Joint Venture, a $300 million waterfront business park development planned for a 130 acre railroad yard at Port Covington. Overseeing a diverse portfolio of over 6,000 properties and more than 3 million square feet of office, commercial and industrial space, he formulated and introduced the City’s first strategic asset management plan and managed the City’s appraisal functions.

Upon ending his tenure as a public official, he returned to his private real estate practice from which he has spent the last two decades providing real estate advice, guidance, appraisals, expert testimony, litigation strategy/support and other services to government officials and many of the most respected legal, business, development and financial service organizations.

Over his career, he has prepared or reviewed in excess of 6,000 appraisals of residential, commercial and industrial properties. His scope of experience includes unimproved land and building sites as well as single and multifamily residential properties for assignments encompassing government property acquisitions and dispositions, estates, trusts, and bankruptcies, Conventional, FHA, VA, Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac mortgages, and employee re-locations. Having appraised nearly every type of commercial and industrial property including vacant land, office buildings, retail stores and shopping centers, warehouses, flex buildings, manufacturing structures, hotels/motels, restaurants, mixed use and special purpose properties, he is a recognized and accomplished expert witness for assignments involving eminent domain (including rights of way and partial takings), bankruptcy, as well as for preservation/conservation easements, and property tax assessment appeals.

He has presented testimony and qualified as an expert before numerous Maryland Courts, the U.S. District Court, the U.S. Bankruptcy Court, the Maryland Tax Court, as well as various property tax appeals and regulatory boards.

Government Property & Public Policy Expert - Domestic & International

Hentschel has earned an international reputation as an adviser, expert, speaker and author on public sector real estate valuation and asset and portfolio management.  

After leaving his City post, he remained a senior adviser to Baltimore's economic development entity (The Baltimore Development Corporation) where he formulated, evaluated and negotiated economic and community development initiatives on behalf of Baltimore City. Thereafter, he acquired 32 properties and relocated 35 businesses to assemble a 28 acre development parcel in the Silver Spring Urban Business District, advising Montgomery County, Maryland during its developer selection and site disposition process that resulted in development of the 405,000 square feet $290 million Silver Spring Downtown Retail Center in suburban Washington, D.C.
He conducted and authored one of the first Public Sector Real Estate Management Surveys in the United States sponsored by the Counselors of Real Estate and City and State, (now Governing Magazine) and was advisor to its subsequent update. He also organized and was keynote speaker at a national symposium entitled Real Estate Solutions For Government ‑ An Agenda For The Future sponsored by the International Downtown Association, City and State, and the Counselors of Real Estate.He served as coordinating and contributing editor for a focus edition of the professional journal Real Estate Issues entitled The Impact of Government and Politics on Real Estate.
Appointed by Maryland’s Secretary of Transportation to the Maryland Department Of Transportation's (MDOT) Real Estate Advisory Group, a blue ribbon commission of private sector real estate experts assembled to evaluate the state’s property utilization and valuation practices, he co-directed the design and implementation of a new, computerized real property management information system for MDOT's portfolio of 7,000 properties and devised a screening and valuation mechanism to maximize portfolio productivity and value, serving as a principal draftsman of the Commission's final report to the Governor which recommended the establishment of the MDOT Office of Real Estate.
In 2001 he chaired a panel of experts assembled to devise strategic recommendations for improving the U.S. General Services Administration’s asset management and valuation practices and to revitalize the under-capitalized Federal Buildings Fund providing testimony to a Congressional Sub-Committee concerning the panel's findings.
On two occasions, Baltimore's Abell Foundation has commissioned his public policy expertise to research and author reports on challenging problems confronting the City of Baltimore.  His 2005 study, “Commercial Property Assessments in Baltimore – A Costly Problem – A Strategic Opportunity” evaluated the effect of Maryland’s commercial property tax assessment policies and procedures on Baltimore City’s property tax rate, the highest in the state. In 2008 “Charting the Future of Baltimore’s Industrial Waterfront” analyzed issues associated with the encroachment of mixed use residential and commercial development on the the industrial waterfront and the Port of Baltimore.
He was part of a team of experts assembled by the Eastern European Real Property Foundation to advise the government of the city of Gdansk, Poland regarding redevelopment of the landmark Granary Island in the city’s historic district.

In conjunction with the Urban Institute, a Washington, D.C. think tank, as part of a USAID sponsored local government reform project, he advised 3 major cities in the Republic of Moldova regarding their property valuation and asset management practices, and developed and conducted a training program for Croatian Government Officials as part of USAID’s Real Estate Asset Management for Governments Program. He was an adviser to the World Bank’s 2007 Country Financial Accountability Assessment for Egypt developing strategic recommendations to enhance the Egyptian government’s real estate portfolio management and valuation practices.

Recently, as an adviser to USAID’s Municipal Economic Growth Activity (MEGA) in Serbia, he formulated and introduced an innovative model designed to expand national wealth through mutual co-operation between the Serbian Defense Ministry and local Municipalities as a means to enhance the value of surplus military properties and attract private investment for their economic and physical redevelopment. To further advance foreign capital investment in Serbia, he developed and conducted valuation training programs for officials of Municipalities, the Defense Ministry and the Republic Tax Administration to promote and facilitate the understanding and use of market based valuation techniques. He also developed and hosted a two week U.S. Study Tour for senior Serbian officials to demonstrate how cooperation between levels of government can leverage benefits when disposing and reusing surplus government property. For his work on this project, Hentschel was the 2011 recipient of the prestigious James Felt Creative Counseling Award by the Counselors of Real Estate. 

As a special adviser to Cardno Emerging Markets USA, he recently assisted the National Bank of Serbia, Serbia’s Central Bank, devise policies to facilitate the formulation of professional standards for the oversight of real estate appraisers, the development of accurate and transparent collateral valuation systems for use by financial institutions under NBS jurisdiction, and the development of a central national information database to facilitate sound collateral valuation and detailed analysis of the Serbian real estate market. 

Educator and Author

As an educator he has written and conducted numerous seminars and continuing education programs for the Greater Baltimore Board of Realtors, the University of Baltimore Management Institute, and the Counselors of Real Estate.

For 10 years he was a member of the faculty for the undergraduate real estate degree program at the University of Baltimore, serving as interim program chairman and instructing courses in Real Estate Principles, Real Estate Appraisal, and Real Estate Investment Analysis.

Often quoted in local and national media, he has written and published numerous works on real estate and valuation topics (see Publications section of this website), has been a member of the editorial boards of two prestigious professional journals - Modus - America and the international peer reviewed professional journal Real Estate Issues for which he currently serves as Editor in Chief. He has been a contributor for such national real estate investment survey publications as Real Estate Research Corporation's RERC Quarterly Real Estate Report, Price-Waterhouse Coopers National Real Estate Land Investment Survey, and Johns Hopkins University’s Trendwatch.

In 2006, he was a contributing author of a chapter entitled U.S. Cities: An Entrepreneurial Approach to Municipal Real Estate Asset Management in the book Managing Government Property Assets - International Experiences published by the Urban Institute Press.

Industry Leader

In 1990, his expertise as an adviser was recognized by The Counselors of Real Estate, the consulting affiliate of the National Association of Realtors when he was invited to membership as one of only 1,100 of the most respected real estate practitioners worldwide to be conferred the CRE designation, an honor bestowed by invitation only to those individuals of the highest integrity and professional competence. A member of the organization’s Board of Directors, he is a former Chairman of the CRE Consulting Corps (the organization's public service initiative); a Trustee of the CRE Foundation; former Chairman of the CRE Capital Region Chapter; former CRE representative to the National Association of Realtors Commercial Alliance (RCA), and is a former Liaison Vice Chairman of Board for External Affairs. 

Since 1998 he has been the CRE Representative to The Appraisal Foundation Advisory Council (TAFAC), the group that provides advice and recommendations to the Appraisal Foundation, the organization mandated by Congress to establish professional standards and qualifications for the appraisal profession. He played a leading role in crafting the Appraisal Standards Board’s revision to Valuation Consulting Standards 4 and 5 of the Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice. A former Chairman of the TAFAC Emerging Issues Committee, he was also a finalist for appointment to the Appraisal Standards Board in 2002. Recently he advised the International Valuation Standards Council on the development of Standards for the valuation of properties owned by the public sector. 

A licensed Maryland real estate broker, he is a member of the National Association of Realtors, the Maryland Association of Realtors and the Greater Baltimore Board of Realtors where he served as a former chairman of the Appraisal Committee.

A Maryland Certified General Real Estate Appraiser he holds the MAI designation from the Appraisal Institute, and is a Fellow of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (FRICS), one of the world’s oldest and most respected international real estate professional societies.

Since 1999 he has served as an arbitrator for FINRA (The Financial Industry Regulatory Association) and for the Counselors of Real Estate Arbitration Panel, and was formerly a member of the Greater Baltimore Board of Realtors Arbitration Committee.

He has served on the Baltimore Efficiency and Economy Foundation Vacant Housing Task Force, The Baltimore Downtown Partnership’s Housing Advisory Council, and the Harford County Design Advisory Committee.