Just Sold: McDonald’s in California, MD

Ground + Space today announced the sale of a McDonald’s property in California, Maryland. After receiving multiple offers, the tenant chose to exercise its right of first refusal to purchase the property. This asset features a 20-year Ground lease that includes scheduled rental increases and multiple five-year options to extend the lease well into the future.

This McDonald’s property is a prominent outparcel to the Laurel Glen Shopping Center along busy Three Notch Road. Nearby retailers include Target, BJ’s, Walmart, Harris Teeter, Ross Dress For Less, Lowe’s and countless others. This particular area of Southern Maryland is one of the fastest-growing regions in the state, and retailers along Three Notch Road benefit from an affluent population with annual household incomes exceeding $96,000. 

The quick-service restaurant (QSR) sector has once again proven to be resilient, even during the face of a global pandemic. Drive-thru lanes, contactless payment options and curbside pick-up have become increasingly important as they directly address their customers’ needs in a convenient way. Even before the pandemic began last March, many QSRs had begun to evolve their store formats to enhance different aspects of the customer experience, from pay kiosks to partnerships with online delivery platforms. McDonald’s is one QSR chain that provides investors with a stable, long-term net lease investment with a reliable, credit-rated tenant, consistent monthly income and few to no maintenance responsibilities.

About Ground + Space

Ground + Space is a net lease brokerage firm that leads with an emphasis on personalized relationships. Michael Zimmerman and team have curated a brokerage firm and investment sales platform focused on boutique amenities and down-to-earth service. During these uncertain times, Ground + Space remains dedicated to providing best-in-class services and results to our clients. We have several listings available featuring retailers that are in a prime position to succeed in a post-pandemic economy. Contact us today to find out more!

The Effects of COVID-19 on Quick-Service Restaurants

Quick-service restaurants (QSR) have long been a popular source for convenient, low cost meals. These factors are increasingly important to consumers facing financial hardships due to loss of income from COVID-19. Contact-less delivery and low wait times are also important to these consumers. One of the easiest ways for restaurants to meet these needs is to utilize alternate forms of food delivery: drive-thru service, curbside pick-up and home delivery.

Getting Creative

Because many local and state governments have forced restaurants and bars to cease all dine-in services due to COVID-19, quick service-restaurants with drive-thru capabilities have seen increased traffic and demand from consumers. For recognizable brands that have a strong drive-thru system in place, a decline in dine-in customers has been met with a strong upsurge in drive-thru orders. These businesses are utilizing their drive-thru lanes to limit crowd size and enforce social distancing rules while continuing to serve customers. However, only about 20 percent of quick-service restaurants in operation today have drive-thru service.

Many restaurants that do not have drive-thru windows are now offering curbside pick-up. Home delivery services like Grubhub, DoorDash and Uber Eats have partnered with many independent and national restaurants to offer discounted—and in some cases free—delivery and commission fees. Other restaurants are creating home preparation kits of some of their most popular menu items, while others are offering frozen and prepackaged goods.

Case Study: Taco Bell

Leading quick-service restaurant brand Taco Bell has set the bar for enhanced restaurant safety via its Seven Enhanced Safety Steps across all of its 7,000 U.S. restaurants. These new protocols will include contact-less service and payment; employee temperature checks; extra sanitation options for customers; and much more. These safety protocols will undoubtedly be adopted and implemented in various ways throughout the QSR sector.

In addition to its enhanced safety guidelines, Taco Bell is offering customers the chance to recreate their favorite Taco Bell dishes in the comfort and safety of their own homes. For a limited time, the At Home Taco Bar will be available for patrons via delivery and contact-less drive-thrus nationwide. This new menu offering is an easy, safe way to feed a party of six for only $25. Additionally, Taco Bell is rolling out a series of recipe cards that will feature classic recipes from the Taco Bell Test Kitchen, along with recipes for Taco Bell-inspired cocktails.

On The Market

Ground + Space is a leading commercial real estate firm that specializes in single-tenant and retail NNN investments. We have two outstanding QSR assets on the market right now. Our McDonald’s listing is a prominent outparcel that sits along an ever-expanding retail corridor in California, Maryland, and our Taco Bell listing is a rare triple-net (NNN) asset within the New York metropolitan area. Our team is committed to providing up-to-date information and best-in-class services to clients during the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond. The market changes daily, so please contact one of our brokers for specialized guidance during this time.

Stay Informed

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) offers daily updates and other information about COVID-19 symptoms and testing in the United States. Johns Hopkins University (JHU) has created a resource to help inform the public and advance comprehensive understanding of the novel coronavirus and its effects backed by experts in global public health, infectious disease and emergency preparedness. Additionally, the World Health Organization (WHO) continues to track the number and location of confirmed cases of the virus across the globe.

Net Lease Market Outlook

After a solid 2019 performance, the net lease industry appears to be headed for continued success in 2020. A combination of low interest rates, changes in the United States tax code and the desire for greater return on investments have caused high demand within the net lease market segment.

Lower Interest Rates, Greater Yields

At the start of 2020, many investors feared interest rates might increase, which would lead to a correction. Instead, interest rates have remained fairly low. Since the cost of capital is lower, buyers are free to invest money into larger deals. With this in mind, many commercial real estate owners are taking this opportunity to sell their smaller assets at superior price points. This, in turn, has created a steady supply of properties for potential buyers.

Slight Slowdown in Retail Development

A decrease in retailer development in certain markets has led to an inevitable slowdown in new retail development since 2016. However, the properties that are being built are extremely desirable for buyers. As always, newly built assets are sold at a premium due in part to their long lease terms and low maintenance costs. In addition to these new construction projects, resale properties have become popular in many markets.

Types of Properties in High Demand

The single tenant net lease (STNL) market has long been viewed as a stable investment vehicle. Guaranteed rents and known financials are just two of the many factors that make net lease assets ideal investments. The most in-demand properties in the STNL sector have a few things in common: these assets are brand-new construction in enviable locales with credit-backed tenants. Additionally, potential buyers prefer properties with Internet-proof tenants.

These preferences have led to the rise in popularity of quick-service restaurants (QSRs) among investors. Most trophy assets in the QSR market feature strong credit tenants whose profits are not hampered by Amazon and other Internet retailers. These lower-priced properties tend to have scheduled rental increases every five years and longer lease terms. Ground + Space currently has a McDonald’s for sale in California, Maryland that is a prime example of an enviable QSR asset. Other popular tenants in the QSR space include Starbucks and Dunkin’ Donuts.

Multi-tenant properties are also in high demand, especially those created via break-up strategies. To put it simply, a break-up strategy involves dividing a property into multiple parcels which can then be independently sold to different investors. This strategy is successful in part because it caters to the needs of a larger field of buyers. More buyers are in need of properties within the $2 million to $5 million range than larger properties with price tags of more than $30 million. The team at Ground + Space have worked with several property owners to facilitate break-up strategy sales of trophy assets in major markets.

About Ground + Space

Interested in maximizing your investment opportunities? Ground + Space is a leading commercial real estate brokerage firm that specializes in single-tenant and retail NNN investments. Contact us today to receive a full evaluation of your commercial real estate assets. We can help you determine whether now is a good time for you to sell your property.