Las Vegas business owners feeling strain of rising rent prices – KTNV 13 Action News Las Vegas

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LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — The valley continues to shine as a beacon of success in the retail market with many new businesses moving to southern Nevada.

However, it comes at a price.

One commercial real estate expert said Las Vegas had its ninth consecutive year of rent growth surpassing the national average.

This prosperity is making it a challenge for some local businesses.

JJ Wilie has been whipping up specialty coffee drinks and breakfast treats at Grouchy John’s Coffee, serving the Las Vegas area since 2010.

“I love this community, and it has done a lot to sustain me,” he said.

Lately, Wilie’s passion to serve has hit a roadblock.

“They are asking for rents that just aren’t feasible for a business our size,” he said.

Wilie said last year, a high rent increase was what forced him to close his third location in the valley.

“They wanted to raise the rent by 20%,” he said.

CoStar, a commercial real estate information company, told Channel 13 that rent increases in the valley have been higher than the national average for nine straight years. With an average retail rent growth of 6.6%, Las Vegas is ahead of the curve, leaving the national average of 3.6% in the dust.

Wilie also said food service margins are razor-thin at his other two locations, so he said changes had to be made, which affect everyone.

“We have raised our prices 20-25% on some items, and more price rises are coming,” he said.

“It’s a shame it has to trickle down to the little guy,” said Red Rutter, a regular at Wilie’s coffee shop. “It makes you question whether you want to go out and have a cup of coffee, have some lunch, or stay at home and make it at home.”

Wilie is not alone. Business owner Victor Botnari is also feeling the pinch.

He said he wants to expand his auto service business to another location but is struggling with the rental prices.

“The rents are $25,000 and up a month,” Botnari said. He said at his current location, he pays $6,000 a month.

Rutter said it’s these businesses we need to take care of.

“The big stores are the big stores, but the little guy needs that support,” he said.

For more information on how to get assistance as a business owner, CLICK HERE.

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