Our Take: What does the 2016 Small Business Survey mean?

2016 Small Business Survey, highlighting both local and national survey results about the economy.  The comprehensive report covers general economic outlooks and concerns, legislation, employment, finance and the community. The survey results reveal an interesting perspective from local businesses about how they view the current economic climate, and their level of optimism heading forward.  Dickson Commercial Group Principal Tom Fennell decided to share some insights about what the results mean for the Reno/Sparks commercial real estate industry.    1. Small businesses say their biggest concerns are first, attracting new customers/new business; and second, hiring and retaining quality employees.  How do you address these problems when you work with clients who may voice these concerns?  

​Working alongside organizations with workforce departments like EDAWN is key to help educate clients on the availability of labor, incentives, and programs available for employers. Also, the local higher education network is making steps to provide degrees and training for certain industries that are now coming to the area, we try and make sure our clients have all of the information necessary  to help their business from an education standpoint.​
  2. 21 percent of small businesses answered they are planning on expanding their work space, add a new building or renovate their current location.  What does this mean for commercial real estate and property management of current commercial properties?  
​It means that we should see positive net absorption and development of new buildings to meet demand. As the economy strengthens and tenants look to grow or move into newer, nicer spaces, it creates lots of jobs for the area which is a great thing. With every transaction you have a lot of vendors that all provide services as part of the lease or sale, so more completed transactions leads to more ancillary business for other industries as well. As vacancy decreases, we should see rents slowly start to increase as landlords have stronger positions and more demand for their space.
  3. Only 40.5 percent of respondents felt the national economy is heading in the right direction, but 61.5 percent of respondents felt the Nevada economy is heading in the right direction.  Why do you believe local businesses are much more optimistic about the future of the economy in Nevada as compared to the rest of the country?  What does this mean for some of the various asset classes in the area?
​The recovery seems to be a decent balance between local growth and growth created by outside companies moving to the area. Our unemployement in Washoe County is at it’s lowest point in recent years, and although we haven’t seen huge numbers of job growth or population growth yet, we feel that will be coming over the next few years and that our local markets should be in a great place for that time. There are still a lot of macro-economic factors that may affect the global markets, however on a smaller level, it seems our recovery and job growth will be fueled by much different drivers than before. There has been, and will continue to be, a paradigm shift in the type of jobs in the region and in the overall image of the area for a place to live and work. ​

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