Commercial Real Estate & What It Means for Sarasota

Michael Saunders & Company recently released their commercial real estate reports for the 2nd quarter, which shows healthy growth all over. What does this mean for you? Primarily, it means that our economy is heading in a good direction; there are new sources of work coming on the scene at a rapid pace; and the housing market hasn't been the only thing moving and shaking in 2018! Let's have a look.



  • Overall vacancy rate is down 5.6%, which is one of the lowest since 2007.
  • Construction has begun on a retail development in Lakewood Ranch of over 22,000 SF.
  • Rumors of a Manatee County Costco continue, signaling that the expected growth to the north will continue.
  • With a growth in year-round residents who are younger & have disposable income, retailers see Sarasota, Manatee, and Charlotte Counties as viable options for sustaining new business.
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A decrease in this rate is a good thing!

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  • One of the largest industrial transactions in our tri-county area happened last quarter when Windward Design Group, an outdoor furniture manufacturer, leased over 280,000 sq ft of space on Whitfield Avenue in north Sarasota (Manatee County).
  • A 30,000 sq ft+ industrial space on Apex Road in Sarasota sold during the second quarter for $2.6 million to custom cabinetry company J&K Kitchen and Bath, which will combine its showroom and warehouse operations in the new space.
  • Vacancy rate in industrial has been low due to lack of inventory for many years. Necessary new construction will provide options in the near future.


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The small increase here is still well below average.

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  • The average office rental rate continued to rise and inventory continues to be tight.
  • Lakewood Ranch continued to be a magnet for health care providers.
  • Office Sale activity primarily occurred in the Downtown Sarasota submarket this quarter.
  • Sabal Palm Plaza on Ringling downtown was completed in the 2nd quarter.
  • Williams, Parker, Harrison, Deitz & Getzen sold their office facility in downtown Sarasota to the Capstone Group, which plans on redeveloping the sites on Orange Avenue.


With limited inventory,  rent prices have increased.

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All data provided by the Michael Saunders & Company Commercial Division 2nd Quarter 2018 Report.