Home Depot Puts Parking Spaces Up for Sale
Go to the average very large Home Depot parking lot and you’ll see lots of spaces not filled with automobiles. The company has noticed these vacant spaces, as well, and decided to do something about them. No, it hasn’t come up with a plan to get much larger numbers of shoppers to its stores and fill up all those empty spots. It is looking to sell off chunks of space to fast food operators, pet supply retailers and auto parts suppliers that may have an interest in sharing a lot with the DIY chain.
“Our customers also own their own homes, take care of their cars and typically have pets,” Mike LaFerle, vice president of real estate for Home Depot, told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “We’re actively going out and seeking end users directly, rather than developers who would seek to tie up the properties.”
Home Depot has hundreds of stores where it is looking to sell off parking lot space. “A number of stores have barren asphalt, and it’s not in anyone’s best interest to leave it sitting there,” Mr. LaFerle said.
Colin McGranahan, a senior analyst with Bernstein Research, called Home Depot’s plan to sell off parking lot space “a neat, innovative strategy.”
Kirk Williams, associate director for retail services at Cushman & Wakefield in Atlanta, told the Journal-Constitution, “It’s a good strategy. It’s no different from a power center anchored by a Target or Kohl’s, with small tenants like Sally Beauty Supply as a co-tenant.”
Discussion Questions: What do you think of Home Depot’s decision to sell off parking lot space? Is this the right time for the chain to be looking to do this? Do you expect other big boxes to follow suit?