Daily Archives: March 3, 2019

St. Louis Builder Finds New Headquarters and Showroom in Fenton

Mahn Custom Homes and Renovations Purchase New Headquarters, Adding Showroom, in Fenton

Creating a Personalized Experience

Mike MahnIn 1998, Mike Mahn saw an opening in the construction industry. As someone who believed in quality work and service, he noticed too many contractors and builders settled for cookie-cutter solutions and unreliable timelines.

In response, he founded Mahn Custom Homes to work on custom homes, historic renovations, home remodels, and light commercial projects. He’s grown the firm into a multi-million-dollar operation with over fifty employees, consultants, and suppliers.

The company continues to grow, and faster than ever. In October 2018, Mahn brought on five new full-time employees, putting their office space at a premium. Warehouse was limited as well, overflowing with materials for upcoming projects.

Concurrently, Mahn had a desire to take the company’s design services to a higher level. He wanted space to showcase many of the options available to clients.

Recognizing the company needed a new place to call home, Mahn called on Will Aschinger of Hilliker Corporation. Together, they started to look for something to meet all of Mahn Custom Home and Renovation’s needs.

Finding Commercial Warehouse, Office, and Showroom Space in St. Louis

Commercial Property St. LouisAschinger and Mahn had specific criteria for their building.

First, they needed about 3000 feet of St. Louis-area commercial office space along with 2000 feet of commercial warehouse space. They also needed to be as close as possible to their original Kirkwood location, stay close to a major intersection, and be convenient for their current employees to commute to and their customers to find.

Additionally, Mahn focused his business model on offering the highest possible levels of customer service. Preferring to call his clients members of his family, he’s always looking for ways to create a second-to-none experience them.

As they looked for a new space, Mahn decided to search exclusively for buildings with a showroom, adding a higher level of service than ever before.

Aschinger brought all of his expertise to the project, knowing that such a building would be hard to find. After assessing commercial warehouse and office spaces throughout the St. Louis area, concentrating near Kirkwood, the two found success in nearby Fenton.

A Custom-Made Solution

Mercury Communications, which had just been purchased by Keeley companies, no longer needed their building at 1710 Larkin Williams. They were ready to divest themselves of the property, vacate their space, and find a new landlord for the tenants in the rest of the building.

It met all of Mahn’s requirements, including office space, warehouse space, and a showroom. Already zoned for light industrial use, it sits close to the intersection of Highways I-44 and I-270 on a highly visible corner.

Moreover, it met one of Mahn’s wish-list requirements: tenants. Tenants would provide cash flow from the beginning while allowing the company to have a building they could grow into over time.

Though the building was built in 1970, it had been completely renovated in 2011 and was ready for its new owners to customize immediately.

In the end, Aschinger brokered a deal for Mahn Custom Homes and Renovations to buy 1710 Larkin Williams from Mercury Communications for $1,225,000.

The new building positions Mahn to continue to expand their current operations while having a much wider range of offerings available to their customers. The showroom’s grand opening will take place on Sunday, May 5.

St. Louis Business JournalBut wait, there is more – read HERE to find out what the St. Louis Business Journal had to say about this development!

Can Hilliker Help You?

What are your business goals? Is it time for a move to a new warehouse, office, or showroom?

Give us a call or browse our property listings. We’d be glad to help you!

Quality Auto STL, moves to Westport with help from Hilliker Corp.

Quality Auto STL, Built on Foundation of Helping Veterans, Finds Commercial Rental Space in Westport

A Dedication to Excellence

David Marks founded Quality Auto STL in 2010. Having worked in the industry since 1999, he jokes he bought a “garage with a house in front of it” to build a business that has gone from a part-time venture to a full-time, profitable career—one set for expansion.

In addition to auto repair, Marks has his dealer’s license. He seeks out and repairs used cars on behalf of clients who trust his knowledge and skill.

From the beginning, he decided to use these skills to give back to veterans, of which his dad is one.

Supporting VeteransMarks volunteers his time with The American Legion’s Vehicle Donation Program. He repairs donated vehicles and, using his dealer’s license, brings them to auction. As a representative of The American Legion, he sells them for a profit that goes to helping veterans, among the organization’s other programs.

It’s work he’s proud of.

Meanwhile, Quality Auto STL has prospered. By 2018, Marks knew he was ready to find commercial rental space in the St. Louis area. For this, he chose Frank Yocum of Hilliker Corporation.

An Opportunity for Expansion

As Marks and Yocum lined out the opportunities for Quality Auto STL, the challenges were immediately apparent.

First, they knew they needed a relatively small St. Louis-area commercial rental space near his current location on Lackland, eliminating several options.

Additionally, since Marks wanted to keep operating as a dealer, they concentrated their search on Maryland Heights, the only nearby municipality that would allow for an auto repair shop to also sell used cars.

The next hurdle was finding someone who believed Quality Auto STL could operate a clean and organized business on their property. Marks came with a track record of taking care of his current location, but he and Yocum would have to convince potential landlords of this.

After visiting and evaluating more than seven locations, Yocum found a nearly 2700-square-foot commercial rental space in the Westport area of St. Louis that was clearly the ideal choice for Marks’s long-term success.

Negotiating a Win-Win

Negotiating Commercial LeaseMad Pak, LLC, owns the building at 11457 Schenk Road. It had commercial rental space opening up that was the right size for Quality Auto STL—large enough to eventually bring on more staff, but small enough to meet its current needs.

The broker for the building knew Yocum and Hilliker Corporation for its second-to-none reputation, lending credibility to Marks’s fledgling enterprise. Mad Pak and Quality Auto STL were able to strike a deal for a 5-year lease.

With the building chosen, Yocum and Marks went to work getting the property zoned for an auto repair shop. The two attended hearings together and were able to take care of the zoning requirements quickly and efficiently.

Poised for Future Progress

commercial rental spaceNow under construction, the new building in Westport is perfect for Quality Auto STL to continue its growth and success. Marks says he enjoyed working with Yocum, having benefited from his integrity and experience.

Marks said of Yocum, “If he says he’s going to handle it, it gets done.” Also, when Yocum needed Marks to do something, it was clear and actionable, making it easy for Marks to do his part.

Yocum enjoyed Marks’s enthusiasm and ambition, saying the two would remain friends for years to come.

Set to move in on March 21, Marks plans to continue his work for the American Legion and hopes to use the new building to grow his business and keep helping others.

Are you searching for Commercial Rental Space?

Our staff is committed to helping people just like you. No matter the size of the space you need, we’re here to assist you in reaching your goals. If you’re ready to make a move, get in touch today.

How to find Commercial Property in St. Louis

Looking to Rent or Buy Commercial Property in St. Louis? Here’s How to Start your Search

Over the next several months, members of our team of Commercial Real Estate Pros will be sharing their expertise with people like you — business leaders poised to move to a new office, warehouse, retail, or industrial space.

 In this article, our broker, Brendan O’Brien will outline the topics we’ll be discussing and get you oriented as you start your search.

Going from Overwhelmed to “I Can Do This!”

commercial real estate searchWhen you’re ready to move your business, the sheer number of opportunities—along with the pitfalls—can be intimidating.

Most business owners only sign a handful of commercial property leases in their lifetime. And those who feel ready to purchase a building are making a substantial investment that could tie up their capital for many years.

There are new terms to learn (or re-learn). Tons of decisions to make. And intricacies to be aware of.

But finding a great new space does not have to be overwhelming. Qualified Commercial Real Estate Brokers can steer you through the process, helping you get what you need while making your life easier.

Commercial Property in St. Louis

Every market has its challenges and opportunities. As of the publication of this article, St. Louis is seeing a growing number of business owners looking for space, but new construction isn’t keeping up.

However, when it comes to commercial real estate, change is constant, and qualified brokers are people who know the history of their area but stay on top of what’s happening now. Residential agents, though they may be able to help you choose a great home, don’t have the same kind of background.

It’s also important to find a broker who works with an organization that has deep resources and broad experience. A company like Hilliker Corporation shines in these respects.

As you get ready to find a new space, here are some topics your agent will want to discuss with you. In the end, the goal of every great agent is to help you make the ideal choice for your business, your employees, and your customers.

What Are Your Business Goals?

Business GoalsQualified brokers want to help you make a choice based on your businesses’ current and projected needs. To do that, we’ll need a good idea of what your goals are and what your plan is to get there.

We’ll also need to know your budget. Some people are uncomfortable communicating their budget, fearing being taken advantage of. But good Commercial Real Estate Brokers take your budget seriously and look for ways to get you the best possible solution in the current market.

Feel like you’re ready to make a purchase? A commercial property purchase can be a solid investment, and good for businesses that can project their growth with relative certainty.

 However, many moves are part of a quick expansion or projections that involve greater speculation.

In those cases, you’ll want to be familiar with the different lease types, how they get quoted, and what each includes. That way, you’ll be able to make an “apples-to-apples” comparison.

What Type of Lease Is Best for You?

There are several different types of leases. Each one outlines what aspects of the building and its maintenance you’ll be responsible for, as well as how you and the landlord will handle the reimbursement of taxes and expenses.

Leases also state what the building owners are responsible for, along with what contribution they’ll make to whatever improvements or changes you’re planning.

In the coming weeks, we’ll delve into the intricacies of leases, but here’s an outline of the primary lease structures:

  • Triple Net – the lessee (or the tenant) is responsible for all the costs of the space they’re leasing, including all repairs, insurance, and property tax.
  • Double Net – the lessee is responsible for insurance and property tax.
  • Gross – the lessee pays a flat rate encompassing the taxes and insurance costs associated with the property.
  • Modified Gross – the lease begins with a base year lease rate. Should taxes or insurance increase beyond the base rate, the lessee (that’s you!) will pay the difference based on how many square feet your business occupies.

Depending on your projections for the future, a sub-lease (taking over an existing lease from a company who no longer needs the space) or a lease with an option to expand may serve you best.

Matching your needs to the right lease is where good Commercial Real Estate Agents shine, knowing how to negotiate on your behalf with your best interests at heart.

Where Would You Like Your Commercial Property Located?

St. Louis Metropolitan AreaThere are a few things to consider.

First, where are you currently located? If it’s already working for you, then we’ll want to start looking for a property close to your current space.

If it’s not working or you’re starting from scratch, you’ll want to find a place that’s easy for your employees and customers to get to. If the commute to your new site is difficult for everyone involved—or even just for you!—then you’ll regret the move as long as your lease lasts.

You can also ask: Where is the center of my life? Where is the center of my employees’ and clients’ lives? Maybe we can find a place near where you already shop, eat, and live.

We’ll also want to determine how visible your business needs to be. We don’t want to bury you in an office park if customers need to see you from the road. At the same time, many businesses are served best by office parks and industrial areas. Which are you?

What Size and Features Do You Need?

warehouse features

To determine office space, you’ll need to start with the number of staff members you have and how many square feet each person on that staff will need. If you plan on expanding, bring that into consideration as well.

Then, add what you think you’ll need for ancillary spaces like a copy room, a break room, and storage or warehouse spaces.

We’ll also want to discuss what the property needs to look like. You may need to impress clients with high-class finishes and an appealing neighborhood. You may need to keep things simple to serve the nature of your business and clientele.

Anything else you can tell us about how your business operates will help us narrow your search, save you valuable time, and get you where you need to be as quickly as possible.

Ready to Get Started?

When you’re ready to make a move, you need a pro you can rely on to get you the best possible space given the parameters you set and the realities of the market.

A great Commercial Real Estate Agent knows the ins and outs of leases, lease negotiations, and purchases. They want to help you get the most out of a deal while keeping your reputation intact.

If you’re looking for a Commercial Real Estate Agent, Hilliker Corporation would love to help. Give us a call, and we’ll do all we can to get you to the very best space for your needs!