Louisville, KY | 2014 Top CRE Markets to Watch : Retail

Sperry Van Ness International Corporation’s (SVNIC) 2014 Top Markets to Watch Reports assess the current state of the national commercial real estate market, and identify micro-trends within specific geographic regions and industries for 2014. Today we are delving into the 2014 Top Retail Markets to Watch. Not the largest or the most actively contested markets, the 2014 Retail Markets to Watch are each at an important juncture that presents unique opportunities for investment. Together, they reflect the diversity of trends that are driving the economy and commercial real estate performance in markets across the country.

TOP RETAIL MARKET TO WATCH : Louisville, Kentucky

LouisvilleThe retail hub for a 16-county region, Louisville is slowly recovering from the downturn with employment growth that exceeds Kentucky’s overall performance but lags the national average. The market’s year-end employment rate was 7.5 percent, down from a peak of 10.5 percent in January 2010. In 2013, Cabela’s opened an 88,000 square foot store in the Old Brownsboro Crossing development, alongside Norton Brownsboro Hospital, Lowe’s and Costco. This year, Horizon Group Properties and CBL & Associates will open The Outlet Shoppes of the Bluegrass, an outlet mall in Simpsonville on the eastern edge of the Louisville metro. Downtown Louisville welcomed six new retail shops last year and will soon join in the renaissance of mixed-use development taking shape across the nation: a $261 million development in the CBD will bring a 600-room Omni convention hotel, 200 apartments, retail shop space and an upscale grocery. Across the market, healthy absorption at neighborhood retail centers has offset negative absorption in most other retail property types. Completion of new projects in 2013 increased overall vacancy slightly, but the vacancy rate remained in the single digits at year-end, with no major space in the pipeline other than CBL’s outlet project. The slow pace of absorption may not call for large-scale retail construction in the near term, but Louisville offers numerous opportunities to meet existing pockets of unmet demand with infill, value-add plays. Louisville will get a new four-diamond hotel along with a much-anticipated downtown grocery, retail shops and 200 apartments under a $261 million downtown development plan announced by Mayor Greg Fischer and Governor Steve Beshear.

To read more on Louisville, and other top retail markets, download the full version of the Top Retail Markets to Watch report below. 

It’s a different world out there.

It requires a different kind of commercial real estate firm working on your behalf in order to be successful. The Lipsey Company has ranked the Sperry Van Ness® organization as one of the most recognized commercial real estate brands in the US for a reason—we know how to deliver a certainty of execution for our clients. Sperry Van Ness International Corporation is one of the largest commercial real estate franchisers with more than 180 locations in 200 markets.

Download the Top Trends and Markets to Watch Reports

Chandan-Retail-CoverRetail Trends and Markets to Watch

Commerical Real Estate Trends and Markets to Watch

Apartment Trends and Markets to Watch

Office Trends and Markets to Watch

Industrial Trends and Markets to Watch



5 for Friday with Bill Menish of SVN Auction Services

This week, our 5 for Friday features Bill Menish, CAI, AARE, BAS, Senior Advisor/Real Estate Auctioneer with SVN Auction Services out of Louisville, Kentucky.

1. What is your geographic market and product specialty?
Through SVN Auction Services, we are capable of conducting auctions coast to coast, but our office focuses on the five-state region of Michigan, Indiana, Ohio, Kentucky and Tennessee. Our specialty is auctions but we execute them in many ways. In fact, we are about to roll out the brand new SVN Auction Services proprietary online bidding platform for timed and simulcast auctions. We also offer live onsite auctions, ballroom multi-property auctions and sealed bid auctions for all property types.

2. What’s your latest best practice tip that you can share?
“Use the media to your full advantage. Don’t worry, they realize they are being used.” I can say that with confidence having been a broadcast journalist in 4 states over a 20 year period with my final stop in San Diego where I was the morning anchor of the top rated morning news cast for 7 years. The walls of our SVN office are covered with framed newspaper articles and we have plenty of newscast footage saved that shows our success at inspiring the media to cover our auctions. They will cover your listings too “IF” you can find the story that their viewers and readers want to hear or see. You can load every listing platform ad buy every ad you can afford, but that free media is what is really going to help you get the word our about your property and why they should buy it. Every property has a story to tell, you just have to find it.

3. What’s been the biggest change over on how you run your business in the past decade?
In a word, it is Technology. It is not a bad word. In fact, we embrace the technological changes the industry is seeing. I heard someone the other day say that nothing has changed in the way we sell real estate or conduct real estate auctions since the economic downturn. I don’t think that could be further from the truth. So much has changed! How we get the listing, how we promote the listings and the sale, how we close them and especially how we turn that success into the next success has absolutely changed. I do believe that face-to-face time is invaluable, but with the clock moving faster than ever before, clients don’t feel they have the time, so you have to be able to connect and inspire even when you are not face to face, and often, that is through the proper use of technology.

4. What business book do you like to recommend to your colleagues?
I don’t have a business book recommendation, but rather just one word: Auctions! SVN Advisors don’t realize the powerful tool that could be in their toolbox, that if used, would deliver more checks and create extremely satisfied customers. We know why they are not using it. It is that darn word AUCTION. People have a pre-conceived notion of what it means and most of the time, they have the wrong pre-conceived notion. We are selling a c-store / gas station now with a 60 day listing that transitions into an absolute auction after the listing period. That is what this seller needed and we created a solution set that fit their needs. They can test the traditional waters, and if we cannot produce the buyer, the absolute auction will absolutely produce the buyer. Auction clients are easy to spot if you listen to them. Every seller wants top dollar, but auction clients have a need to sell in a time defined manner, or they need the kind of exposure that auction marketing produces or  they have a product that will glimmer in the spotlight of national exposure with an event surrounding their sale. I promise that you have talked to a client who would have considered an auction. Maybe you just didn’t hear them asking for it, but hopefully you will now. I promise it will help you sell more properties and close more deals.

5. What’s a fun fact that not everyone knows about you?
I have run 5 marathons and my wife has run 6. If someone ever claims I cheated, it would mean that I ran a marathon without her knowing so I could catch up with her. On a serious note, I am very proud of my accomplishments in my former career where I awarded 15 Emmy’s and the prestigious Edward R. Murrow Award. I tell people often that I was training to be an Auctioneer the whole time I was a newscaster, I just didn’t know it. The broadcasting business helped me hone skills that I use every day to succeed in commercial real estate.

*All Sperry Van Ness offices are independently owned and operated.

5 for Friday with Don Erler, CAI, AARE

It’s Friday and we are asking five questions of Don Erler, CAI, AARE of Sperry Van Ness/Ward Commercial Group in Louisville, Kentucky.

Don Erler, CAI, AARE, of Sperry Van Ness Ward Commercial Group
Don Erler, CAI, AARE, of Sperry Van Ness/Ward Commercial Group

1. What is your geographic market and product specialty? 

My partner Bill Menish and I work primarily in Kentucky, Indiana, Ohio, Illinois, Missouri and Tennessee, but have often conducted auctions throughout the country.  Erler Menish Auctions as part of SVN Ward Commercial Group conducts real estate auctions only, with primary emphasis in recent years on bank owned and troubled properties.  In the more than 25 years that I have been in practice, I have been able to establish great relationships with banks and bankers, which in today’s market have accelerated (no pun intended) my practice to  new levels of production.

2. What’s your latest best practice tip that you can share?

If you love what you do, you will never work a day in your life.  If you love people, you will love what we are doing: STP, see the property; see the people.  Get out of the office and enjoy where you live, who you can work with and how you can solve their real estate problems and goals.  When I got into the real estate auction business in 1987, my mentor told me to spend time with creative people and I would never be bored.

What’s been the biggest changeover on how you run your business in the past decade?

Wow. Years ago I hoped I could retire before I had to learn how to use a PC.  Little did I know how modern technology was going to change my life and my business.  The ability to reach out and communicate with anyone, anywhere, anytime makes this an incredible world.  It’s still a bit scary to think what it will look like in 10 or 20 more years.  It’s hard to imagine where this is all going, but the ride is incredible!

4. What business book do you like to recommend to your colleagues?

My daily focus is my health and fitness, both physical and mental.  You are only as old as you think and feel, but if your health fails, you have nothing left.  It’s not a business book, but  Younger Next Year: Live Strong, Fit, and Sexy – Until You’re 80 and Beyond by Chris Crowley & Henry S. Lodge, M.D., is a great read and offers great advice.  Also, if you need to continue to be motivated, the Canfield books and classes are fabulous.

5. What’s a fun fact that not everyone knows about you?

I have two children (33 and 20), both out of the house, so our “children” are and have always been our four-legged friends.  Right now we have two large dogs and seven cats of all flavors. I can’t image what life on our farm would be like without animals in our life.  When I met my wife in the late 1970s I had 27 animals: six dogs, four cats, six chickens, and 11 horses. She only objected to the large number of horses. But when you live on a farm in Kentucky, horses are almost a necessity to fill in the area behind the black board fences.


*All Sperry Van Ness® offices are independently owned and operated.