With the commercial real estate market in a major slump, many commercial building owners are remodeling their buildings to attract and retain tenants, according to the Milwaukee chapter for the National Association of the Remodeling Industry (NARI).
That commercial building remodeling trend is similar to the trend of more homeowners remodeling their existing homes, rather than moving to larger homes, since the housing market collapsed.
“I see people buying (commercial) buildings at a reduced cost because of the economy. There are some good bargains out there,” said Jim Klappa of Greenfield-based JDJ Builders Inc. “People are buying these corporate buildings at a deal, and then preparing the buildings so they can either move their business into it or make rental space for tenants. There are more vacancies now than there have ever been in the corporate sector.How much is the owner of the building willing to invest in you, the tenant? We find that owners are willing to offer more to the potential renter. They’re trying to get tenants in their buildings, and they’re willing to make improvements. But as far as ‘accessorizing,’ they stick to the basics – making it functional for an affordable cost. Years ago, they wanted the ‘glitz and glitter.’ Today, it’s about functionality rather than luxury.”