Small Biz Owners' Missed Opportunity

Times are tough all over. You don’t have to remind small-business owners of that.

But with commercial real estate prices at historic lows, and low mortgage interest rates right there beside them, entrepreneurs are missing a big chance to make a huge killing – and bolster their business in the process.

The CIT Small Business Commercial Real Estate Study, a report from CIT Group (Stock Quote: CIT), documents how small-business owners can capitalize on great commercial real estate deals – even though they apparently don’t want to.

According to CIT analysts, cheap commercial real estate is one of “the few upsides” for small-business owners trying to operate in a harsh economic climate.

But entrepreneurs aren’t taking advantage of the low prices. CIT says only 6% of small-business owners have bought one or more commercial properties, while a majority – 53% – say they “haven’t even thought about making a purchase."

Overall, only a little over a quarter – 28% – of the 300 small-business owners interviewed for the survey say real estate is a “great” business opportunity.

The path to leveraging great commercial real estate opportunities goes through the U.S. Small Business Administration, the survey says.

“Today’s market conditions may offer a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for entrepreneurs who want to take their businesses to the next level,” says Chris Reilly, President of CIT Small Business Lending. “To achieve this, Small Business Administration loans, with their low cost and flexible terms, offer an excellent choice for small-business owners looking to refinance their existing real estate or to acquire a new property.”

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