An Unprecedented Year for Michigan Restaurant Real Estate

Griffin Properties is having a busy year. They closed a deal or listed a new property at unprecedented rates in the past twelve months. The Michigan restaurant market is on fire.

“Everyone wants in,” says Scott Griffin, president of Griffin Restaurant Group. “Those who are here are doing extremely well and want to do more. Those who aren’t here see the opportunity and want to move in as soon as possible.”

The restaurant industry in Michigan posted over three percent sales growth to reach nearly $13,500,000,000, according to the National Restaurant Association’s (NRA) Restaurant Industry Forecast.

This year will mark the fifth consecutive year of restaurant industry sales growth. Overall, national industry sales are projected to exceed $680 billion.

“Consumers currently have a historically high pent-up demand for restaurant services,” says Hudson Riehle, senior vice president, Research & Knowledge for the National Restaurant Association, “which is likely to translate into a business boost as the economy continues to improve.”

In Michigan, consumers are particularly hungry for new restaurants. They are looking to get out, have fun and try new places to eat. Moreover, they now have the confidence and means to do so. The state’s personal income is forecast to increase 4.7 percent in 2016.

This newfound personal wealth and freedom is a result of Michigan’s escalating economic growth. Projections for the year ahead are not only good, they are better than the U.S. overall. Michigan’s growth is expected to continue and outpace the rest of the nation for at least the next six and 18 months.

Over the next year, 64% of Michigan business leaders say they expect the state’s economy to grow and none expect it to decline. Comparatively, when asked about the U.S. overall, economic optimism barely made into the majority, with only 51% having faith in the nation’s recovery.

This gives Michiganders plenty of reasons to dine out more, and flourishing restaurants are more than happy to serve them. In fact, they need more places to do it! So, the Michigan restaurant real estate marketing is taking off like never before.

“There are a lot of great properties out there,” says Griffin, “but the savvy restaurateurs are acting fast. They certainly have us hopping.”

With new operators, new concepts and new listings continuing to flood the pipeline, it looks like this year may even beat last year’s boom in Michigan restaurant real estate activity.