Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Rents on Retail/ Commericial Space

It makes sense that Church Ave is littered with 99 cent stores and nail salons (not that there is anything wrong with that...) the current rents charged by the owners seem to attract only businesses that can make a quick buck. As stated in previous posts the rents for a 500 sq. foot space go for approx. $2200 a month. I've done a little more investigating and found the rents for anything more sizable seem to vary but hover in the $3000 to $4000 range. A small store front where perhaps a cell phone business is run can go for about $1600. I was told today that many of these renters must also kick in for the owner's yearly taxes. For a small independent run business to stay on top of rent alone they must generate at least $125 per day... this does not take into account employees, necessities for business etc. And well let's not even talk about renovation costs which don't seem to be factored in. Let's not also talk about the fact that these rents are in line with more affluent and established areas.

What will rents like this attract? Typical commericial businesses that can take on the overhead until they turn a profit... banks and established commericial business like say Starbucks or chain pharmacy.

If you were at all like me (and many of you have made it very clear you are not) you moved or choose to live in Brooklyn because of it's small town feel. Doesn't it sometimes seem as if parts of Manhattan have turned into one big shopping mall? Here, in the BKLYN we still have our independent run bakeries, coffee shops, restuarants, home good stores etc. I'd like for some of that independently owned business to be on Church Ave. not because I want to turn it into anything but because I think the idea of a Main Street is a positive for all within the community. Yes, yes I can get on train but wouldn't it be nice to have the option? If rents for store fronts and commericial spaces stay in this range independent business won't come here.

The bigger concern and honestly one that truly seems like an unfair practice is that the owners aren't concerned with the fact that the rents they are charging can't be met... why did the hardware store on Church Ave close it's doors so quickly? Why does the cell phone store front or bodega change 'management' so frequently?

While the current renters struggle to stay on top of costs they can't be involved with the community and improving it's cleanliness or overall appearance because who knows how long they've got here. Building owners don't care because they've got their money and go home some place else. We, although there is a call for some diversifacation while maintaining our roots, are left with the same.