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Real Estate - Commercial

Shopping Center's New Owner Plans Improvements

By Cece Nunn, posted Apr 17, 2020
San Jose Mexican Restaurant is one of four tenants currently at Shallotte Commons Shopping Center. (Photo courtesy of Kelly Stuart)
The owner of properties in southern Brunswick County on Thursday bought Shallotte Commons Shopping Center for $1.75 million with plans for improvements.

The nearly 86,000-square-foot center, built in 1984 and last renovated in 2006, now belongs to Carolina Dreams Golf LLC of West Virginia. The firm also owns the Food Lion-anchored center The Village at Sunset Beach, along with several other area properties, a broker said Thursday.

Kelly Stuart and her father and business partner, David Stuart, of the Carolinas Commercial Real Estate Team of Intracoastal Realty Corp., represented the buyers in the transaction. The seller was Professional Properties of Oklahoma LLC, and the listing agent was the Patton Wiles Fuller Group of Marcus & Millichap.

The Stuarts will also market and manage the center, at 5051 Main St. in Shallotte, for the new owner.

While the center currently only has four tenants, a True Fit gym, Domino's Pizza, One Main Financial and San Jose Mexican Restaurant, Kelly Stuart said the growing town of Shallotte is in need of places for offices and services.

"We have no office space in Shallotte. There's one little office park that has seven units in it. I represent that as well and it fills up as soon as they become available for lease," she said. "Shallotte is essentially a very small town that is the business center for all of the South Brunswick Islands."

The center needs an anchor tenant, which the Stuarts will be aiming to recruit. The previous anchor, a Lowes Foods, is closed and its lease expires in August.

It can be hard at times to convince national chains that Shallotte is a good location for them, Kelly Stuart said, because the town's demographics don't line up with what they traditionally want.

But for evidence of Shallotte's ongoing growth, they need only to look to a nearby shopping center under construction that is anticipated, according to a marketing flyer, to include a number of national retailers.

Marketing materials for Coastal Walk at U.S. 17 and Smith Avenue in Shallotte show upcoming Ross, Marshalls and Burkes clothing stores and PetSmart, Ulta and Hobby Lobby as tenants under construction.

Meanwhile, the new owner of Shallotte Commons has a plan in place for updating the center.

"We have recommended a series of improvements to the owners to start in the immediate or near future, which will include resurfacing of the parking lot, evaluation the roof and the HVAC systems; we're going to address the monument signs and a general cleaning and refresh of the center," Kelly Stuart said. 

That doesn't mean the center will then be for sale again.

"They buy these properties as investments to hold them; they're not trying to flip them," she said of Carolina Dreams Golf LLC. "And when you're looking at a retail center, if someone is buying it to hold it, they put a little extra attention to it."
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