Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Economic improvement For sale or lease

Driving around town (and surrounding areas) I've notice that a lot of retail buildings are up for sale or up to be leased.

It's similar to how I used to (ok still see) so many homes for sale and both are due to the down turn of the economy. But it seems like the housing market has already hit the bottom and is claiming up it seems like I am seeing more retail space up for sale.

Like the years before the crash of the housing market there was a boom of houses either being build or solid well over market value the same is true for retail commercial zoning. At least there was a lot of building of new retail buildings. For years I've notice new shopping centers pop up and tons of suburban/urban sprawl.

It seemed like a good thing at the time but I wonder did we see a little to much growth? Clearly some of these business have gone out of business because the economy is down but how many places are out of business because they where effected by the sprawl that may have over estimated the economy's growth in the first place.

An example I notice is that over the past few years a few new malls have opened up which has lead to the closing of the mall that has been in the area for decades. Since the new malls been built the old mall slowly started to die off until last year they closed down with sears being the only store in that mall opened.

I wonder how many of the buildings I see with a for sale sign are like that business are closed not just because of the bad economy but because business has been shifted to somewhere else or maybe we have one to many similar stores nearby and so business has been split between them but none of the stores got big enough of the pie to stay in business.

But even though it's economically troubling to see so many business out of business, I also have hope. The fact that there is so much commercial space out for sale means that business can buy propriety at low prices this is good for people looking to start their own business. The ground is ripe for new business to start up.

Also while I see so many for sale or lease signs up it seems a store in my neighborhood that's been closed since the late 80's/early 90's and before that it was closed since the 60's, has been bought and someone is working on that building. I assume that it was bought because the price was rock bottom low.

Of course people are going to have to be smart if they want success for both themselves and the economy. People are going to have to look at what is around them and build something different instead of going for the same types of stores. Maybe some of those buildings will have to be rezoned and turned to something else instead of retail space. Ie as we try to regrow are economy we will need to be smarter about the growth then we where before not fall into some of the same problems we are facing now.

But the space for economic development is for sale or lease all we have to do is buy it and build something.

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