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  • Commercial Realty Advisors' Jeff Andrews, SIOR, and Houston Hough represented the Seller in the 2023 sale of Kaleideum's downtown building to Compleat Kidz, a pediatric rehabilitation services clinic for children with special needs. The building, located at 390 South Liberty Street, was the original downtown facility of Kaleideum, formerly The Children's Museum of Winston-Salem.  The Grand Opening of its new downtown Winston-Salem location was held this past weekend.

    “As a longtime resident of Winston-Salem and a father of four, it has been an honor to represent Kaleideum in the sale of its original downtown facility,” said Jeff Andrews, SIOR, Partner and Broker-in-Charge at Commercial Realty Advisors.


    To read the entire article published by YesWeekly, click here:


    To learn more about Compleat Kidz, click here:




    The Triad industrial market has experienced strong growth throughout the coronavirus pandemic, with 2021 resulting in historical highs in 12-month rent growth and net deliveries, while also experiencing five-year peaks in net absorption. Sales have also experienced similar growth, with highs in 12-month sales volume and historically low cap rates.

    With 5.5± million square feet under construction at the time of this blog post, lower than average vacancy rates (5.35± %) appear to be organic in nature, as the market has not experienced significant supply-side strains on inventory. Leasing velocity has remained strong, with 12-month net absorption figures (2.7± million SF) easily surpassing the rolling 10-year historical average of 2.1± million square feet. As demand remains high, rent growth is expected to trend upwards, with some forecasts indicating a $0.50 per square foot YOY rent growth from Q4 of 2021 to Q4 of 2022.

    Despite the current economic climate, investment in the Triad Industrial market has remained strong, with market cap rates hovering in the 6.25%-6.75% range. Market sale prices have hit an all-time high of roughly $95.00 per square foot, while 12-month sales volume figures ($423 million) have eclipsed the former historical peak of $401 Million with ease.

    Various Industrial Lease Deals (last 12 months):
    • XPO Logistics - 639,800 SF at $4.35 NNN | 2203 Sherrill Drive, Statesville
    • Schnadig International Corporation - 263,500 at $4.95 NNN | 1818 Youngs Mill Road, Greensboro
    • JELD-Wen - 112,500 SF | 2061 Sherrill Drive, Statesville
    • Pine Gate Renewables - 105,000 SF at $3.25 MG | 74 W 32nd Street, Winston-Salem
    • South Atlantic Packaging Corporation -  103,821 SF at $3.75 MG | 315 Cassell Street, Winston-Salem
    • Plastiflex - 62,878 SF at $5.75 NNNdeal | Statesville
    Various Industrial Sales (last 12 months):
    • 100 Enterprise Park Boulevard, Winston-Salem - 304,200 SF Distribution Center sold for $23.8 Million ($78.24 PSF)
    • 210 N Pendleton Street, High Point - 324,650 SF Manufacturing Facility sold for $16.03 million ($49.37 PSF)
    • 289 Business Park Drive, Winston-Salem - 125,000 SF Distribution Facility sold for $9.15 million ($73.20 PSF)
    • 2675 Annapolis Drive Winston-Salem - 115,500 SF Distribution Facility sold for $10.75 million ($93.07 PSF)
    • 295 Business Park Drive Winston-Salem - 316,000 SF Distribution Facility sold for $30.05 Million ($95.06 PSF)
    • 300 Penny Road, Greensboro - 1,546,000 SF Distribution Facility sold for $74 million ($47.84 PSF)
    • 386 Murdock Road, Troutman - 1,000,000 SF Distribution Facility sold for $69 million ($69 PSF)

    *Above data comes from a Costar analysis of 295 Class A industrial properties.*

    Click here to check out our industrial listings.


    While demand in the Winston-Salem office market has remained lukewarm throughout the Coronavirus Pandemic, vacancy rates have stayed close to the 10-year historical average of 7.5%. Minimal construction in the last four quarters has placed little supply-side pressure on vacancy, and this trend is expected to continue into 2022. Winston-Salem's office vacancies are expected to stay below Great Recession levels, however as office users continue to evaluate their space needs in wake of the pandemic, market fundamentals are expected to be further impacted into 2022.

    Leasing velocity has remained low, with demand being heavily impacted over the last two years. While Winston-Salem closed 2020 with more than 95,000 SF of positive net absorption, an outflow of negative net absorption over the prior 12 months (-125k SF) has shown that there is little sign that the Winston-Salem office market will improve into 2022. With demand lagging behind other office markets in North Carolina, rent growth has also remained stagnant, hovering near the 10-year rolling average of 1.6% YOY growth.

    Investment in Winston-Salem's office sector has experienced similar trends as the leasing market. Market cap rates continue to remain near the 10-year rolling average of 8.5%, while 12-month sales volume ($51.2 Million) has lagged behind historical trends. Although investment has remained minimal in the last 12 months, market sale prices have seen a sharp uptick in comparison to historical norms, coming in around $150 per square foot.

    Click here to check out our office listings.

    With the advent of the New Year, it is time to start thinking about what this year might bring for your business. Don't let your expiring lease sneak up on you without adequate time to conduct your due diligence. Use the steps below to help you assess your space needs in 2022!

    1. Start early!

    Whether you plan to renew or relocate, don't wait until the last minute to explore your commercial real estate options. If your lease is expiring at any point during 2022, now is the time to initiate the process. Timing is an essential part of any renegotiation or relocation project!

    2. Be prepared... hire a tenant rep!

    Commercial real estate can be a tricky business. Hiring a tenant rep means you always have someone in your corner. Tenant reps assist tenants in analyzing their space requirements and commercial real estate objectives in order to formulate the ideal real estate solution for their business. With Commercial Realty Advisors' tenant representation expertise and extensive market knowledge, we can assist in the renegotiation of existing leases or help with relocation projects.

    One of the most valuable aspects of tenant representation is the time that it saves business owners. Clients can handle the day-to-day operations of their businesses, while the tenant rep broker is taking care of the time-consuming tasks such as researching properties and negotiating agreement terms.


    3. Analyze your current situation... should you stay, or should you go?

    Take a step back and look at your current space, does it fit your needs? Is your business expected to expand/contract in the next fiscal year? What does your business plan look like for the next few years, does your current space fit those plans? If your space works for your business, a tenant rep can assist you in renegotiating your lease terms to market rates. If you think that you have grown out of your existing space, a tenant rep can assist you in finding a more suitable home for your business. The benefit of renewing is that staying in your current space is usually cheaper and easier for your business due to avoiding the interruptions caused by moving.

    However, if your space does not facilitate your goals for the upcoming year, then it's time to move! Working with your tenant representative, you will discuss space needs, pricing, location, and current market trends. They will then research available properties, present you with a comprehensive list for you to review, assist you in identifying good fits for your business and schedule times to tour your top options.

    Commercial Realty Advisors has been serving the Piedmont Triad of North Carolina since 2006. With SIOR, CCIM, ACIP and LEED certifications, our highly trained brokers have built a reputation of trust and excellence.
    Contact us today so we can help you with your tenant representation needs!

    Commercial Realty Advisors is proud to have been able to represent our new and returning clients during these recent transactions. We provide expertise in a broad spectrum of services that covers all aspects of commercial real estate brokerage. With a team of eight licensed professionals, we act on behalf of companies, institutions, and individuals to acquire, sell, or lease commercial real estate.
    Contact us for all your brokerage needs!

    Sale Transactions

    - 1918 Eastchester Rd, Hight Point, NC (Land)

    1918 Eastchester Rd, Hight Point, NC

    Jordan Reece, CCIM, Brad Klosterman and John Reece represented the seller of this 20-acre, prime development land featuring a large road frontage on Eastchester Drive in High Point, NC. in the property was rezoned from General Office to Office Institutional to accommodate a retail/office /residential mixed use opportunity. This property has excellent access to I-74 and Palladium Retail Area.

    - 718 East Blvd, Williamston, NC (Retail)

    Steve Vallos represented the seller of this former Walgreens store in the charming town of Williamston, NC, located northeast of Greenville, NC. This retail location will be a new store location for Walker NAPA Auto Parts.

    - 190 Charlois Blvd, Winston-Salem, NC (Office)

    190 Charlois Blvd, Winston-Salem, NC

    Jeff Andrews, SIOR, and Steve Vallos represented the seller for this 12,000 SF office building located off Stratford Road in Winston-Salem, NC. This Class A office space will be the new home to the renowned Mitchell Prime Properties, a luxury North Carolina real estate firm. John-Mark M. Mitchell, Founder and CEO of Mitchell Prime Properties, has consistently been recognized for breaking real estate records throughout North Carolina. Mitchell Prime Properties is proud to be recognized as the first company to be featured on the cover of the duPont Registry.

    - 5080 Harley Dr, Walkertown, NC (Retail)

    Lease Transactions

    370 & 380 Knollwood St, Winston-Salem, NC

    - 370 Knollwood St, Suite 300, Winston-Salem, NC (Office)

    Allen Tate Real Estate subleased space in this Class A office space to be the new home to one of their Winston-Salem offices.

    - 370 Knollwood St, Suite 600, Winston-Salem, NC (Office)

    Jeff Andrews, SIOR subleased this office space to local law firm, Waldrep Wall Babcock & Bailey PLLC. Waldrep Wall focuses on bankruptcy, commercial transactions, healthcare, commercial real estate, and litigation.

    - 380 Knollwood St, Suite 450, Winston-Salem, NC (Office)

    Steve Vallos and Kurt Birkins represented the tenant, Sono Bello, in this transaction. Sono Bello specializes in advanced, micro-laser technology, offering a variety of body contouring treatments. This is the first Sono Bello to open in the Piedmont Triad area and is conveniently located near Thruway Shopping Center, off of Salem Parkway.

    - 1381 Old Mill Circle, Suite 300, Winston-Salem, NC (Office)

    1381 Old Mill Circle, Winston-Salem, NC

    CoreLife will open a new office in Winston-Salem's Consolidated Center, conveniently located off of Stratford Rd, near Interstate 40. CoreLife is a nationally recognized healthcare organization serving patients who want to get to a healthy weight to address medical conditions that keep them from living a full life.

    - 1134 Burke St, Suite C, Winston-Salem, NC (Office)

    Working with the Jacob Hauser, owner of Woodsman Studios, Brad Klosterman, AICP, LEED AP ND, was able to find a larger studio and office space for this full service content creation house. Woodsman Studios is nationally known for provided high quality video and photography services for commercial, corporate, documentary, cinema, and reality productions. This small operation has now grown to have production houses in many states throughout the east coast.

    - 3086 Trenwest Dr, Suite 7, Winston-Salem, NC (Retail)

    Senior Broker Brad Klosterman, AICP, LEED AP ND, helped owner, Megan Lambeth, of MegLo Cakes find the perfect spot to open her first store front for her small boutique bakery. After spending many years learning and honing in on her cake decorating craft at a local grocery store, Megan decided it was time to branch out and work on her own. Taking the extra time to get to know what Megan needed and wanted allowed for Brad to find the perfect spot for Megan.

    - 3012 E 10th St, Greenville, NC (Retail)
    - 418 S Stratford Rd, Winston-Salem, NC (Retail)
    - 110 West Medical Park Dr, Lexington, NC (Medical)

    Commercial Realty Advisors is excited to welcome Hanna Jackson to the team!


    Hanna joins Commercial Realty Advisors as the Marketing Communications Specialist after spending almost 5 years working for the Board of Cooperative Ministries of the Moravian Church. She was responsible for provincial communication, project development, and event planning. Her background also includes email marketing, website design, and marketing campaign development. Commercial Realty Advisors specializes in real estate brokerage, development, and property management. Hanna currently lives in Pfafftown with her husband, David, and son, Ford. She is an active member of Calvary Moravian Church, holding positions on many committees and boards.

    We are excited to have Hanna on our team!

    Welcome, Hanna

    Now that vaccines are becoming more available to the general US population, offices are planning to get back to normal. But what does “normal” look like for future office spaces post-pandemic?

    A look back in history reminds us that during the Industrial Revolution, people began doing commercial work from home. Over time, the expectation for employees to work in communal office spaces became the norm. Not long ago, tech companies did everything they could to keep employees from leaving campuses by providing incredible on-site amenities.

    In March of 2020, all that changed. Offices that could, closed their doors and sent their employees to work from home. Some organizations, like Twitter, are now allowing their employees to work remotely on a permanent basis. Eliminating – or at least scaling back – office space saves money, as companies transfer the cost of providing and paying for offices to employees (even though those offices are often at the kitchen table). According to Pew Research Center reports, in February of 2021, 71% of workers with the ability to work remotely are doing so, and 54% want to continue telecommuting post-pandemic, with the ability to be more productive with the comforts of home, on their own schedule. There is no going back to what was.

    But the desire to spend more time working from home is not the same thing as never wanting to go into an office environment again. The office is not going away and might be needed more than ever post-pandemic, as a place to maintain and build an organization’s culture. People need places where they can come together, connect, build relationships, and develop their careers. In a knowledge economy, face-to-face interaction and collaboration are needed for serendipity and growth. The office offers important learning opportunities for younger employees, according to Jim Coleman, economics head at WSP in London. “A lot of developing people is not formal training, it’s all the other interactions. There’s still a lot to be gained from being together as a team.” “For people at the start of their careers, there’s probably more desire to be with other people because you’re still learning and you want the experience and social life that goes with it. Whereas as you get older and you may have settled down … it’s much easier to work from home.”

    Although companies had already begun to shrink the amount of space per employee before the pandemic (less than one desk per person, for example), Magnus Meyer, Managing Director of WSP Nordics & Continental Europe says “In a crisis, there is always a focus on trying to reduce fixed costs like offices.” “The typical tenant will start thinking that maybe they don’t need space for 100% of their employees, maybe only 75% or 60%. Or they might not expand because of the crisis, but just work with the space they have.” However, because of the nature of COVID-19, organizations have been pushed in the opposite direction. For offices to maintain distances and open safely, they will have to allow for more space per employee and continue to offer remote working. “The next time a coronavirus comes along, we know we need to move quickly to this model, which means that it has to be in play – at least in part – most of the time,” says Colemen. “I don’t think any business will want to go back to the way things were done, so that has an immediate implication for space.”

    So what will be the “new normal” in office work? In many cases, individual work will continue to happen at home, often with periodic returns to the office for group collaboration and socialization. In others, there will be a full-time return-to-the-office after COVID. In both cases, there needs to be a greater ability to social distance while in the office with a more flexible use of existing space.

    Offices do matter. They allow necessary in-person collaborations and social interactions that keep employees engaged in ways that can’t happen remotely. We require private spaces when we need separation, but we also need public places to bring us together. But, office spaces must evolve into better workplaces that make interactions more effective–and safer–than ever before, to ensure they are ready if and when the next pandemic comes around.


    https://www.workdesign.com/2020/10/how-do-cre-organizations-think-workspace-will-be-repurposed-post-covid19; by Elise Shapiro


    https://fortune.com/2020/12/09/how-will-offices-change-after-covid-19-pandemic-coronavirus-us-workplaces/; by S. Mitra Kalita, 12/9/2020

    https://hbr.org/2020/08/reimagining-the-urban-office; by Peter Bacevice, John Mack, Pantea Tehrani, Mat Triebner, 8/14/2020

    The Wall Street Journal, “The End of the Commute? Maybe Not”, by Peter Cappelli, 12/17/2020

    https://www.morrissegroup.com/hotelization-office-space/; by Ken Morris, 2/17/2021

    June 2020

    Why Triad is Poised for Business Growth in 2021

    It’s been a tough year. Coronavirus has wreaked havoc on the country’s – and world’s – economies. But despite the challenges posed by the virus this past year, North Carolina continues to attract new and expanding businesses originating within our state, across the US and even internationally.

    North Carolina’s business environment continued to receive impressive accolades this year, tying with Georgia for #1 Top Competitive State for Business from Site Selection, 2020 (North Carolina was #1 in 2018, #2 in 2019) and #1 Best State for Business, 24/7 Wall St, 2020.

    “That leaders in disparate industries are drawn to locations all across our state proves North Carolina’s broad appeal to businesses across the world,” said Frank Emory Jr., Chair of the N. C. Economic Development Partnership. There are several factors that establish North Carolina’s high rankings.

      • Favorable legal and regulatory business climate
      • The lowest corporate income tax in the country
      • Low business cost
      • World-class labor pool—including the largest manufacturing force in the southeast, and a young, educated and growing workforce
      • Favorable, temperate weather
      • Access to beaches and mountains
      • Top quality medical facilities

    Dariel Curren, EVP of Development Counsellors International, an organization specializing in economic-development marketing, said results of a 2020 corporate executive survey show 55% will bring back or expand US production and operations after leaving due to unfavorable U.S. trade policies and recent global economic uncertainties. During the pandemic, these executives became more interested in medium-sized, rural and suburban areas vs. large metros. “This is good news for Greater Winston-Salem”, Current said. The Triad, positioned between the two largest NC markets (Charlotte and Research Triangle), provides different benefits: little urban sprawl, less traffic congestion, a sizable workforce, and a lower cost of living.

    Mark Owens, President and Chief Executive of Greater Winston-Salem Business Inc., feels Winston-Salem will likely benefit from businesses’ growing interest in continuing the work-from-home trend forced by the pandemic. “Growth potential is highest in the industries that Winston-Salem is best suited for, including biotechnology and life science, advanced manufacturing, food and beverage processing, and more.” Although high-profile relocation successes grab the most attention, he said, “more than 80% of new jobs come from existing businesses rather than relocation projects.” "Our major employers are likewise in industries that are primarily seeing resilience from the pandemic, in high-growth industries, and located in a business-friendly local economy that fosters their success", Owens said.


    Owens said his Greater Winston-Salem team developed new marketing efforts to respond to the pandemic, including a refreshed website, digital advertising campaign, data tools and commercial real estate listings “that are designed to get the attention of businesses looking to locate in one of the best communities in the nation.” Marketing efforts should help potential employees to view Winston-Salem as a great place to work, live and play, as attractive as Austin, TX, Nashville and Denver.

    Laura Johnson Lee, with Greater Winston-Salem, said "our strategy involves seeking new opportunities and working regionally for success.” "We’re collaborating with city and county partners to identify and market new industrial properties, including sites, spec buildings, brownfield sites and more. Existing commercial and office space is available with more under construction.” “We’re experiencing traction in our recruitment efforts, with positive reception from national site consultants and current economic development clients considering Forsyth County."

    Forsyth County and Winston-Salem have struggled for the past several years without ample speculative/vacant buildings or land ready for development, and that challenge continues to restrict efforts to recruit new businesses. “The current lack of sites and modern industrial building is one of biggest impediments to growth,” Mayor Allen Joines said in June 2019. And, the efforts to expand Winston-Salem’s downtown Innovation Quarter have slowed down as fewer buildings eligible for historic preservation tax credits are available. However, the completion of Winston-Salem’s Northern Beltway will open opportunities for new industrial development sites. Both UPS and Ontex were able to identify land (Alamance and Rockingham counties) for expansion projects, and Nestle Purina PetCare recently announced plans to renovate the empty MillerCoors campus in Eden.

    "We have work to do, but I feel like we have the system and partners in place to be successful," said Forsyth Manager, Dudley Watts. "We have a diverse portfolio of sites, land and commercial office space that’s suited to appeal to a broad range of incoming projects, and also offers our homegrown companies room to expand."

    Watts also stated that Whitaker Park Development Authority is working with Greater Winston-Salem "on a couple of projects interested in the 400,000-square-foot facility there which is currently leased by Hanesbrands.” "The 95,000-square-foot building, 605-12, has been part of many submissions, and is of interest to many as it has expansion potential and rail access", he said.

    Chris Chung, chief executive of Economic Development Partnership, said "we feel we will continue to put our communities into play for capital investment and job creation." “I think there is very little that separates these regions in terms of a lot of the data,” Chung said. “Oftentimes, it’s as much about awareness and perception of what the Triad can represent for companies.”

    Even though the Triad is shadowed by our larger neighbors, the better North Carolina does as a whole, the better we will do. Access to additional property via the Northern beltway, our strength in post-pandemic industry sectors, ample and highly trained workforce talent, and our high quality of life and low cost of living differentiates the Triad – we just need to get the word out.

    Commercial Realty Advisors, LLC, recently announced it will serve as the exclusive listing agent for 275 North Elm, cornerstone of The Outfields, a redevelopment project that will serve as the foundation of the renewal of Downtown High Point. Commercial Realty Advisors is excited to provide brokerage services for this new venture, developed by Elliott Sidewalk Communities and the City of High Point. Commercial Realty Advisors’ project leasing team will include Jeff Andrews and Jordan Reece. Future phases will include residential living and retail.

    The Outfields - 275 N. Elm, HP Office/Retail

    275 North Elm will be located at the entrance of High Point’s new Truist Point baseball stadium, home of the High Point Rockers, which opened in May of 2019. The project will be a place of community inspired by the art and history of the local furniture heritage, constructed of masonry, brick, steel and glass.

    At the foundation of the three-story building will be High Point’s first Food Hall, Stock + Grain Assembly. The 12,000-square-foot modern marketplace will be home to 10 locally-based food and beverage vendors, ample seating and a large outdoor space, combining unique food, retail and entertainment options in a new destination for the revitalized downtown. Baltimore-based Cana Development, one of the country’s premier food hall experts, will develop, lease and manage Stock + Grain. An additional 2,000 square feet of retail space is available for lease immediately adjacent to the food hall.

    275 N. Elm, HP - View From Conference Rooms

    The second and third floors will be 36,000 square feet of Class A office spaces (18,000 SF per floor) with state-of-the-art amenities, balconies overlooking the ball field, and the most outstanding office views in the revitalized downtown High Point. Single and multi-tenant leases are available, and there is the potential to qualify for City of High Point’s Targeted Downtown Office Incentive Program. A large marquis sign on the third-floor deck overlooking the stadium is available for a lead tenant.

    “As a resident of High Point, myself, I am pleased our firm will be involved with such an important project. In addition to the completed baseball stadium, this will help evolve High Point’s downtown into a place that will attract people to work, live and play in the city,” says Jordan Reece, Partner at Commercial Realty Advisors and lead Broker on the project. “We can’t wait to see the final product and it’s impact on our city!”

    About Commercial Realty Advisors: Commercial Realty Advisors, LLC, is a full service commercial real estate firm founded in 2006, specializing in brokerage services, development, and property management. Committed to the highest standards of client service and business ethics, we were built on a firm foundation of trust and excellence. Exceeding expectations is a Commercial Realty Advisors hallmark.

    About Elliott Sidewalk Communities: We build downtown joy by aligning the interests of municipalities and their university neighbors, creating vibrant Main Street environments that integrate campus life with town life. We transform underused or vacant parcels into a thriving, walkable downtown destination. It attracts students and residents alike with unique retail, cultural and hospitality amenities. It creates energy, economic growth, and a renewed sense of community. It's a joy to behold.

    Filling Your Industrial Space Needs

    Is your business looking for an industrial property? There can be a lot to consider during the search process, and some of the items that should be on your checklist are more obvious than others.

    Commercial Realty Advisors guides clients through the decision process, helping to identify all the different factors needed to make an ideal selection. We help navigate the commercial real estate process from start to finish.

    Take a look at the list of considerations below. How would you rank these as priorities in your search?


    • Proximity to manufacturing/distribution/customer base
    • Interstate corridors
    • Available workforce in the area
    • Labor cost for the area
    • Zoning
    • Incentives (state, county, city)


    • Square footage + expansion options
    • Clear height
    • Bay size

    Building Specs

    • Use (warehouse, distribution, manufacturing, other)
    • Type of building (steel frame, tilt-up concrete)
    • Loading (dock doors, drive-in doors)
    • Sprinkler system: ESFR or wet
    • Office space
    • Parking (employee, tractor trailer)
    • Outdoor storage
    • Temperature control: air turnover, high and low temperatures
    • Floor thickness & PSI
    • Rail access
    • Heavy electrical, significant water needs
    • Lighting (LED, HID or fluorescent)

    Davie Industrial Center - Phase I

    Davie Industrial Center Phase 1 Exterior

    Commercial Realty Advisors has been serving the Piedmont Triad of North Carolina since 2006. With SIOR, CCIM, ACIP and LEED certifications, our highly trained brokers have built a reputation of trust and excellence. Contact us today to help you find the industrial space that’s perfectly suited to fit your needs. Steve Vallos is an industrial space expert; he can be reached at steve@commercialrealtync.com or 336.793.0890 ext. 103.

    Commercial Realty Advisors, LLC | 336.793.0890 Commercialrealtync.com

    The Warehouse Explosion – Hottest Commercial Investments During Pandemic


    Before the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, we already saw the decline in the health of brick-and-morter retailers as the popularity of online shopping has grown. Malls have been closing, retailers suffering, and shopping centers have experienced high turn-over, an increase in the number of FOR LEASE signs in windows of previously successful stores. The shift to e-commerce has created more jobs between 2007 and the end of 2019 than brick and mortar retailers lost, according to Michael Mandel, Chief Economic Strategist at the Progressive Policy Institute. Consumer demand for e-commerce has become insatiable as communities were instructed to shelter in place. Even consumers previously wary of shopping on their computers and phones began to embrace the convenience and safety of shopping online. And this trend will continue.

    Some businesses, like Amazon, Target, Costco and Walmart were able to quickly respond to the additional business by adding required warehouse space. Businesses that weren’t ready to make the quick transition to put greater emphasis in online business suffered, and recently big store brands like Neiman Marcus, JCrew, Brooks Brothers, Pier 1, Macys and JCPenney filed for chapter 11.

    This growing need to find industrial and warehousing space requires companies to become aggressive and creative. The ability to flex with consumer demand will make or break businesses moving forward, and companies that have the capability to ship from multiple locations across the country–to get as close to the end consumer as possible–will benefit from shorter delivery times and lower shipping costs. Real estate firm JLL predicts an industrial space demand of an additional 1 billion square feet over the next five years. The need is expected to be met with a mix of traditional industrial sectors outside large urban and suburban areas and space close to–or part of–now vacated shopping centers. Although warehousing rent, historically lower in cost than retail, has increased more than 1/3 over the past 3 years, retail rent has decreased, closing the gap between the two.

    Right now, Amazon is the most active company to gobble warehouse space since the pandemic began, and occupies the most small and medium-sized buildings, according to Abby Corbett with CoStar. However, Amazon still only occupies 10% of all warehousing in the second quarter of 2020. Of all the latest industrial leases, 60% are smaller warehouses (less than 200,000 SF) occupied by health and medical, light manufacturing and e-commerce companies needing last mile fulfillment (located 6-9 miles from the final destination).

    With the ongoing demand for additional warehouse space, industrial real estate has been minimally affected by the pandemic. After the second quarter of 2020, CoStar reports the industrial sector is the most resilient segment of the commercial real estate business. Ongoing requirements for distribution, fulfillment, data center space and cold storage (an industrial warehousing area identified as high growth potential) continue to fuel space demands. With a growing need to increase pharmaceutical capabilities in the US, cold storage has become an important part of the supply chain. Additionally, according to a recent MarketFlash report from commercial real estate firm, CBRE, approximately 95% of all food–either produced in or imported to–the US must go through third-party distribution centers before reaching consumers. In CBRE’s 2019 report, “Food on Demand Series: Cold Storage Logistics Unpacked,” they estimate the need for 75-100 million SF of freezer/cooler space to meet the post-pandemic demand for food storage.

    To remain competitive in this new world, retailers will also need to adjust by either expanding their current square footage to accommodate on-site shipments, or finding new networks of small warehouses for quick delivery, especially in more densely populated areas.

    In terms of investor returns, Nareit reports that every major real estate sector yielded negative year-to-date returns since the Pandemic began. Multifamily experienced a 26% loss, office declined 28% and retail loss was 48%, while industrial investments dropped only 10%. According to a Q1 2020 survey of Piedmont Triad building permits by themarketedge.com, Forsyth and Guilford counties (with the highest Triad populations) were down 21% and 5% respectively vs. 2019, while Randolph and Davie counties reflected “staggering growth”, up 347% and 338% over the previous year. Not only are real estate prices lower in those rural counties, they are also situated right off major highways, a short drive to other large NC urban metropolitan regions (Charlotte and the Research Triangle of NC).

    Davie Industrial Center Phase 1 Exterior

    In Davie county, the first phase of a new industrial development has been completed and is now available for lease. 0 Gildan Drive in Mocksville, part of Davie Industrial Center, is a brand new ±324,000 SF building zoned GI (General Industrial), and is equipped with an ESFR sprinkler system. This building is constructed of insulated precast concrete walls and steel and includes 52 dock high doors, 2 drive-in doors, 50’ x 54’ bays with a 60’ staging bay. 0 Gildan Drive is build-to-suit, and could easily be adapted to accommodate cold storage. Davie Industrial Center’s proximity to major highways provides access to half the country within a day’s drive.

    This state-of-the-art facility is fully customizable to suit the needs of any business. 0 Gildan Drive in Davie Industrial Center is a sweet spot, literally and metaphorically. For more information, visit davieindustrialcenter.com or call us at 336-793-0890 to schedule a walk-through.


    Commercial Realty Advisors’ Property Management Team Prepares Informed, Robust Response to COVID-19

    The onset of the COVID-19 pandemic has introduced new dangers to office workers. The risk of touching infected surfaces – or breathing contaminated air – can play a dominant role in how diseases spread inside an office environment.

    Whether it’s coronavirus, influenza, bacterial pneumonia, measles or the common cold, how smartly a building is managed and operated can affect employees’ safety in the workplace. The “new normal” requires rethinking procedural and physical environmental

    changes as workers return. Both immediate quick fixes and long-term plans must be considered to instill a level of confidence in employees that the businesses can function well without compromising their health.

    How We Help Businesses Keep Employees Safe

    Commercial Realty Advisors’ Property Management division is hard at work to prepare our managed offices for employees’ safe return. Here are some of the changes we initiated:

    Doors into common areas are propped open to reduce surfaces employees need to touch, including stairwells, hallways and restrooms. Long term, we will encourage all property owners to install doors that don’t need handles and can swing open both ways by pushing with your foot, shoulder or elbow. We already install motion-activated lights and motion sensors to bathroom fixtures in the buildings we develop and manage (this is also good for the environment) and are encouraging our property owners to do the same.

    Our janitorial staff is following all CDC guidelines for safe building maintenance. On-site dayporters disinfect common area touchpoints multiple times a day using Oxivir TB, a hospital grade disinfectant cleaner, and stairwell railings are cleaned two to three times daily at a minimum, depending on traffic. Trash containers were added inside many bathroom doors to dispose of paper towels upon exit to avoid touching door handles. We now offer deep-cleaning add-on services for tenants who request additional maintenance of personal work spaces, including disinfecting desks, chairs, keyboard and computers, phones, etc. as needed. Hand sanitizer stations will be provided in all lobbies and public areas.

    Our responsive maintenance team responds to requests as quickly as possible, and limits interactions with tenants by performing building maintenance first thing in the morning. If work must be done during the day, our workers wear protective gear including masks and gloves for protection. Outdoor air ventilation has been adjusted to increase the maximum amount of outside air circulation within the limits of the air handling system.

    We request our tenants wear masks in all common areas and we are installing signage for safety protocols. To encourage social distancing, we limit attendance to two people per elevator, two people in the restroom and no more than ten people in conference rooms (space permitting). In appropriate buildings, we have established “one way” traffic direction in stairwells. We reduced the amount of furniture in lobbies and common areas to support social distancing and to minimize waiting.

    The Benefit of a Reliable and Experienced Property Management Partner

    Managing your own cleaning and maintenance solutions can be an overwhelming responsibility for a property owner or tenant, especially during this challenging time. A reliable maintenance partner can instill confidence in employees, tenants and clients that the business owner cares about safety and comfort.

    Commercial Realty Advisors’ Property Management division controls the operations of office, retail, mixed-use, medical office and industrial buildings throughout the Piedmont Triad. Our team currently manages over 15 properties with more than 115 tenants. With many years of experience, we have developed an outstanding reputation as experts in providing innovative and cost-effective solutions to any property management issue. Our maintenance services include:

    • On-site dayporter cleaning of common areas
    • Deep cleaning personal work spaces
    • Exterior building and ground maintenance
    • Monthly financial reporting
    • Capital improvement recommendation and implementation
    • Building income and expense management
    • Rent collection
    • Lease administration
    • Construction management
    • Other duties as requested

    Working with a respected and reliable property management team not only ensures your work environment remains safe for your employees and customers, but continued maintenance keeps the property as attractive and functional as possible. This leads to high tenant satisfaction and retention rates, sustained building occupancy, and maximized property values for property owners. To ensure the safety of your employees and tenants and secure the best return on your commercial investments, contact a member of our Property Management team today at 336-793-0890.

    They often say it takes thirty days to form a new habit. So with nearly a nationwide shelter-in-place order on Americans for at least that long, people are likely to continue some of their quarantine behaviors once the orders are lifted. These changes in behavior will have a ripple effect, stretching across many different business sectors, one being commercial real estate.  Less retail storefronts, larger warehouse needs, and the desire to bring manufacturing stateside are potential outcomes.

    Stocking Supplies

    We have all experienced the shortage of things like toilet paper, cleaning products, and hand sanitizer firsthand over the past few weeks. This will likely trigger both consumers and companies to change their habits. Consumers will begin to stockpile an additional supply of these types of products in their homes to be prepared for the threat of another event of this nature. Companies will re-examine their approach to the way their supply chains function. They will begin to increase the amount of products they have readily available, which will trigger a greater demand for warehousing across the country.

    Grocery Warehousing

    Traditional retail was already trending from brick and mortar toward e-commerce, but this pandemic will fast-forward that transition. While grocery stores have maintained a strong traditional shopping model with large stores in neighborhood centers, their model is likely to evolve as well. With a lot of consumers forced to begin ordering their groceries for pickup or delivery, we have reached the tipping point of a much more streamlined model. There is expected to be a surge in demand for cooled warehousing in more densely populated areas to allow for timely delivery of perishable goods to a large number of consumers.

    Domestic Manufacturing

    The lack of critical items like ventilators, masks, and other personal protective equipment during the pandemic has been highly publicized. The United States’ dependence on cost effective foreign manufacturing has shown itself to be a glaring Achilles heel over the past month. While companies in other industries have made efforts to help by shifting their facilities and workforce to produce these critical goods, shortages could lead to some manufacturing shifting back to the US. Companies that make essential items will look to operate at least one production facility domestically to limit foreign dependence. This could lead to new opportunities for areas in the US with low labor costs and the ability to offer incentives to companies.

    How Commercial Realty Advisors Can Help

    The demand for additional storage, whether for medical equipment, dry goods or perishable groceries, will require creative solutions from commercial real estate firms. In the Triad of North Carolina there is ample land available for warehouse development, empty space that can be re-purposed for warehouse needs, and existing warehouse facilities that are ready for immediate use. Commercial Realty Advisors, experienced full-service commercial real estate providers, will evaluate all opportunities to determine the best location possible – and under the most favorable terms.

    Commercial Realty Advisors is developing three industrial buildings, ±920,678 square feet in total, that are ideally suited for cooled or traditional warehousing. Located in Mocksville, NC, within the Piedmont Triad region and just off I-40, the Central North Carolina site is within 30 miles of four additional interstates and is situated between the Triad and Charlotte Metros - the two largest industrial markets in North Carolina. The first phase is already complete, ready for upfit. Click here to visit the Davie Industrial Center website.

    For more information about filling our community’s warehouse needs, contact an experienced broker with Commercial Realty Advisors at 336-793-0890.

    Courtyard by Marriott To Open | Opportunity Zone Hot Spot in Winston-Salem!

    Our team at Commercial Realty Advisors is excited to see the completion of Winston-Salem’s Courtyard by Marriott, as finishing touches are applied in advance of the downtown Fourth Street’s 126-room hotel opening in March of 2020.

    Although we are co-developing the hotel, Virtua Partners, of Scottsdale, Arizona, purchased the property in the summer of 2019, and joins Hotel Equities of Atlanta to take over management once the completed hotel opens in March.

    The addition of this new hotel in downtown Winston-Salem rounds out the region’s booming hospitality market. The new space will feature a full-service restaurant, fitness center, swimming pool, meeting/banquet space, large courtyard and access to a public parking deck. The most unique feature of the hotel is the rooftop bar, called “Top of Fourth”, which provides expansive views of our vibrant downtown. Accessible from both within the hotel and through an exterior entrance, the bar solidifies this hotel as a hot new destination spot for the city.

    But that’s not the only significance of this property. The Courtyard by Marriott is one of Winston-Salem’s first Opportunity Zone projects.

    What exactly are Opportunity Zones and how will this program benefit Winston-Salem? Developed by the Trump administration and approved through The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017, the Opportunity Zone incentive is a tool to encourage long-term investment in specially designated low-income, distressed and rural communities across the nation with the goal of increasing jobs and housing. Simply stated, Opportunity Zones provide a tax incentive for investors to defer and reduce any of their capital gains liabilities (profits earned from the sale of shares of stock, a piece of land, a business and other taxable incomes) and eliminate future taxes by investing at least 90% of their capital into Opportunity Zone properties. Potential profits in these new types of commercial real estate properties are like other investments on steroids–very attractive incentives for potential investors and receiving communities alike. Consult your tax and legal advisors to determine whether the program is right for you.

    The state of North Carolina has 252 Opportunity Zone census tracts, and the city of Winston-Salem identified 10. (Click here to see the Winston-Salem tract map.) In addition to downtown, where the Courtyard by Marriott will be located, other tracts include  property in Martin Luther King Jr. Drive, Whitaker Park, Winston-Salem State University and Union Station, Innovation Quarter, Smith/Reynolds airport, and the communities including Happy Hills, the Lakeside Villas and Boston Thurmond.

    Commercial Realty Advisors currently has several Opportunity Zone properties available. If you are interested in learning more about how to invest in the Triad’s Opportunity Zone properties, contact an expert broker at Commercial Realty Advisors today.

    View of Outside Deck of "Top of Fourth" Rooftop Bar at Courtyard by Marriott on Fourth St in downtown Winston-Salem