Meramec Dermatology leases retail space in Jefferson County

Building on Complimentary Skills

Dr. Karl Staser and Dr. Rachel Kyllo became friends during their dermatology residency training at Washington University in St. Louis. Staser, who has a Ph.D. in biochemistry and immunology, originally worked for the university in a research-focused position.

However, he wanted to spend more time with patients and had a dream of one day starting his own practice. In a concurrent position with St. Vincent Hospital in Evansville, Indiana, he traveled (and still does) once a week, treating patients with typical dermatological problems. These include psoriasis, acne, warts, and skin cancers.

Kyllo  has focused her career on surgical and cosmetic dermatology. After completing her dermatology residency training at Washington University, she trained at Northwestern University as a Mohs micrographic surgeon and now provides surgical care one day per week to veterans at John Cochran VA in St. Louis.

As Staser got to know Kyllo through her residency and beyond, he appreciated her complementary clinical strengths. He said, “She’s smart as hell and as skilled as they come. I think she’s the best dermatological surgeon I’ve seen.”

As they got to know each other, a romance blossomed too. Now happily married, they’ve decided to make St. Louis their home, even though they were originally from different states.

Staser said, “We love St. Louis. It’s a great town for food and drink. I’ve lived in Boston and LA, but the people here have a great attitude and are a lot of fun.”

The two realized their complementary strengths as dermatologists would make them a good team. They decided they would start searching the St. Louis area for a place to begin a practice of their own.

Serving the Underserved

Staser and Kyllo started with research, looking for where their services might be needed most. According to a recent report from Reuters, rural areas throughout the US are underserved by dermatologists. Though telemedicine has filled in some of the gaps for some straightforward problems, most skin issues still require an in-person appointment.

Staser said, “Telemedicine is a potential but partial solution for many rural people. There’s only so much a doctor can do over an Internet connection. Dermatology is a hands-on field. Patients have to be in an office for direct treatment of lesions, surgery, and skin cancer removal.”

However, when people have to drive too great a distance, they tend to put off appointments, suffering longer than they would if they had someone closer to home. As Staser and Kyllo conducted demographic studies, they realized eastern Jefferson County towns like Arnold, Herculaneum, and Pevely had an immediate need for more dermatologists.

The two decided to start looking online for commercial real estate for lease in Jefferson County.

Creative Commercial Real Estate for a Doctor’s Office

Dermatology offices don’t typically need to accommodate much bulky specialized equipment. Still, Staser and Kyllo needed around 5000 square feet they could easily split into:

  • Rooms for exams and procedures
  • A lab
  • Offices for staff
  • A waiting room

They wanted to be in an area easily accessible to people in their target demographic. Arnold was their first choice for a few reasons.

First, as the largest town in Jefferson County, it’s a destination for shopping and other amenities. Second, Arnold sits on I-55, which runs through the underserved eastern portion of the county.

Third, the couple needed to stay in St. Louis City for the time being. With responsibilities elsewhere (Staser in Indianapolis and Kyllo at John Cochran on North Grand), they needed property with easy access to I-55 as well.

While searching the Internet, one property caught Staser’s attention. He called the number on the listing, which led him to Will Meehan of Hilliker Corporation. Meehan took the time to understand what the doctor’s office would need to be successful. As Staser described the ideal property, he was impressed by Meehan’s straightforward assessment: “This isn’t for you.”

However, Meehan had a solution. He knew about commercial property for lease in a retail strip center in Arnold right off I-55. Owned by Hildegard Properties and represented by Kyle Steiner of JLL, it was 5524 square feet. The perfect size.

Creative Commercial Property for a Doctor’s Office

Before Staser and Kyllo looked at the space located at 3783 through 3789 Vogel Road, they were aware that few dermatologists had offices in strip centers. But their focus was on convenience for patients. Plus, they reasoned, dentists and plastic surgeons had found success in strip centers. Why not a dermatology practice?

And this bustling area next to a Target meant foot traffic — great advertising for a new business of any kind. The strip center is also home to a large modern gym, providing an obvious synergy with the cosmetic side of their practice.

Meehan represented Staser and Kyllo — now called Meramec Dermatology — during negotiations. Though Meramec would need to invest a significant amount in remodeling the space, Meehan negotiated in a tenant improvement allowance that helped significantly.

Staser feels like they’re starting on the right foot with their new landlords. He said, “Hildegard Properties was very professional and responsive. They’re the kind of business that wants other businesses to move forward.”

Of working with Meehan, Staser said, “He’s been great! Very responsive and professional. While our negotiations with JLL and Hildegard were positive, there was a lot of back and forth, and Will stayed with it till the end.”

With Steffel and Sons serving as contractors, Meramec Dermatology celebrated the grand opening of its full-service medical and surgical practice in January of 2020.

Success for Startups

Technicians of any kind have a lot to consider as they start a business of their own. Exceedingly skilled in one arena, their success depends on developing a network of outside experts.

That’s why Hilliker Corporation has become the entrepreneurs’ choice for commercial real estate in St. Louis.

Each of our brokers is an expert in the tricky and complex world of commercial real estate. And each has cultivated relationships with other specialists: lenders, accountants, contractors, lawyers, and more.

We listen, we consult, and we commit to helping you make the best real estate transaction for you and your business.

If you’d like to speak with Will Meehan and learn more about how he helps businesses find commercial real estate, click here.

Finding office and warehouse space in Fenton - a testimonial

Another satisfied client submitted this testimonial about Hilliker brokers Hal Ball and Will Meehan! Great work from a great team.

When my Landlord of fifteen years informed me that he would not be able to renew my lease, I knew it was finally time to step up and buy a building. Additionally, I had invested in several farm properties and felt it was a good time to sell those to help with the new building purchase.

My Landlord recommended that I work with Hal Ball and Will Meehan at Hilliker Corporation as they had done some consulting for him and he felt they had professional expertise and a good knowledge of the market.

I followed his suggestions and am glad I did.

The market was very tight so finding many good building options was difficult. Will and Hal stayed on it and informed me immediately when properties came on the market and were also aware of several “off market” options. Ironically I then heard through the grapevine of a property possibly coming up for sale, and I asked Will and Hal to help with the negotiation and sale process. We worked as a team and negotiated such a good deal that the Tenant with a first right of refusal stepped up and bought the building!

Undaunted, Will and Hal dug back in and found another property which was larger than I required but had good tenants in place to help pay the mortgage. We negotiated a good deal and I was also then able to roll the proceeds from my farm parcel sale into the new property as a 1031 exchange. The entire process was more extensive and time consuming than I first imagined but I was happy to have my real estate professionals by my side.

We moved in last week and to my surprise a vase of flowers arrived shortly thereafter from Hilliker to welcome us to our new offices.

I would strongly recommend contacting Hal Ball and/or Will Meehan  should you need to relocate or purchase a building.

Carl Alsbach – The Closet Factory
(Purchased a 36,000 Sq. Ft. multi-tenant office/Warehouse in Fenton in June of 2019)

Broker, Frank Yocum, Recognized as “Best of Maryland Heights”

On August 14, 2019, Hilliker Broker, Frank Yocum, was recognized as one of the “Best of Maryland Heights” by the Maryland Heights Chamber of Commerce.

With years of commitment to the community, Frank Yocum is currently helping 5 businesses find and negotiate optimal locations in Maryland Heights, while also volunteering to build the community through dedicated volunteer work with:

  • The Maryland Heights Chamber of Commerce
  • The Taste of Maryland Heights
  • The Maryland Heights Development Committee
  • The Maryland Heights Business Expo
  • The American Legion Post 213
  • CHAMP Assistance Dogs
  • Leftovers, Etc.

Congratulations, Frank on your well-deserved recognition!

Increasing Investment Value - a Testimonial

Hal C. BallA successful client sent in this letter describing Hilliker Senior Vice President, Principal, and all-around great guy Hal Ball. It takes time and energy to send positive feedback, and we appreciate that Mr. Anderson did so!

I am writing to recommend the services of Hal Ball at Hilliker Corporation. While I grew up in Pacific MO, I moved away in the 1960’s. About the same time my father Ralph Anderson built post offices in Pacific and House Springs Missouri. When he passed in 1986 my brother and I inherited these properties and have owned them since.

Last year my brother’s health declined and we decided to sell the buildings. A local business friend who was also affiliated with the SIOR top commercial realtor network recommended we work with Hal. Once I spoke with Hal I knew I had the right guy. Polite and attentive Hal listened to our goals and promptly laid out a plan for success. Rather than a quick cheap sale, Hal worked with the USPS to extend the term of both leases. This increased the value of the properties and Hal was able to sell quickly thereafter to a qualified buyer for a great price.

Hal and Hilliker Corporation have our highest recommendations.

Ralph Anderson Jr.