Featured News Research

Top 7 Takeaways from Franklin Street’s 2021 Tampa Bay Economic Outlook Report

CEO Andrew Wright predicts the region’s staggering population growth will provide significant opportunity for investors and occupiers

TAMPA, FL (February 15, 2021) – Franklin Street, one of the largest commercial real estate companies in the Southeast, is pleased to share its 2021 Economic Outlook Report for the Tampa Bay market. The detailed report takes a look at how Florida and Tampa Bay’s diverse economic and real estate sectors compare to the rest of the country, while offering key insights for the year ahead. Here are seven key takeaways from the report:

1. The big picture for Florida and Tampa Bay is population growth.

Over 1,060 people move to the state a day and a staggering 387,479 people moved to Florida from April 2019 to April 2020. Florida’s population is growing almost three times as fast as the national average and Tampa Bay specifically is growing at a rate 20% higher than the state average. Florida is the fifth fastest-growing state in the country, preceded by Idaho at No. 1, then Utah, Washington, and Nevada. 

“Of particular note is the size of Florida’s population compared to the states that are growing faster than ours,” says Franklin Street CEO Andrew Wright, “It’s one thing for Idaho to grow by 4% on 1.8 million, but it’s an entirely different thing for Florida to be growing at over 3.2 percent on a population of almost 22 million. In terms of both size and growth rate, no other state aside from Texas is even comparable.”

2. There’s no better place than the I-4 Corridor. 

Breaking the state’s population growth down by county, the two largest counties with the two largest growth rates are both within Florida’s “I-4 Corridor,” the region connecting Tampa Bay to Orlando via Interstate 4. Wright says this bodes well for Tampa Bay’s future. “There’s no place I’d rather be in the world, as someone who is involved in real estate, than the I-4 corridor.”

3. Strong homes sales signal a healthy market.

Home sales are another positive indicator for Tampa Bay’s future. Absorption is up across the spectrum, especially within the $200,000 to $500,000 range, and new homes are being bought faster than they can be built. With construction rates up, putting constraints on new construction, new home supply is expected to remain limited, creating a seller’s market. 

“These home sales are a signal that population growth is going to keep accelerating and more and more people are going to continue moving here,” says Wright. “Tampa Bay homebuilders have a bright future going into 2021.”

Although homes prices are up, the tight inventory paired with record-low interest rates has created strong demand from buyers.

4. Multifamily remains top investment sector. 

On the commercial side, multifamily continues to be the best-performing asset class for investment. Franklin Street expects the number of multifamily sales to slow in 2021, but the total dollar volume to increase as investor appetite rebounds. Rent growth and new development will likely slow, but steady population growth and the need for affordable housing, especially with home prices on the rise, will continue to fuel demand for apartments both from renters and investors.

5. Office vacancies could lead to favorable terms for tenants. 

Tampa Bay’s office market saw rents flatten in 2020, while vacancies rose for the first time in five years. This is happening at a time when Tampa Bay is adding a few million square feet of new office product, while more sublease space is also becoming available. These factors are likely to create an oversupply in the near term, which could present opportunities for tenants to secure more attractive lease terms. 

6. Retail properties will look different.  

Retail, which was already under attack by ecommerce, suffered another hard blow from COVID-19 in 2020. As bankruptcies and foreclosures continue, landlords will look for creative ways to re-tenant buildings, likely with some non-retail uses. Similarly, developer will look for ways to repurpose older malls and shopping centers into mixed-use projects. Medical use in retail, aka “medtail” will also be a notable trend this year. 

7. Tampa Bay will see no shortage of opportunities in 2021.

Overall, Franklin Street predicts 2021 will be turbulent, yet full of opportunity as the market rebounds and investors regain confidence.

“Tampa Bay’s rapidly expanding population combined with strong GDP growth, record low interest rates and limited inventory due to supply constraints are a perfect recipe for economic recovery and success in 2021,” Wright says, “There’s going to be a lot of opportunity here in 2021 for the real estate space.”

Download Franklin Street’s full 2021 Economic Outlook report here.

About Franklin Street:

Founded in 2006 during one of the toughest real estate climates, Franklin Street focused on delivering value-added solutions to meet the evolving needs of clients. Through a collaborative philosophy of leveraging the resources, expertise and experience of each of its lines of business, Franklin Street has grown to include seven business divisions – Investment Sales, Tenant and Landlord Representation, Capital Advisory, Insurance, Property Management and Project Management. With more than $5 billion in transaction value across all major product types, Franklin Street offers unmatched value and optimal solutions for clients nationwide.  Headquartered in Tampa, Fla., the company has offices in Fort Lauderdale, Jacksonville, Miami, Orlando and Atlanta. Learn more about Franklin Street at

In the News Industry Publication Research

Striking it RICH: Franklin Street’s Tom Rybak Keeps Things Light

Welcome to the next post in our “Striking it RICH” blog series! This series features Atlas clients, vendors, employees and supporters who embody one or more of our company’s Core Values:





This month’s post features Tom Rybak at Franklin Streetan Atlas client representing the Core Value of Humor.

About Franklin Street

Established in 2006, Franklin Street is one of the fastest-growing full-service commercial real estate firms in the Southeast. The firm offers commercial real estate brokerage, landlord and tenant representation, capital advisory, insurance, property management and project management services.

Headquartered in Tampa, Franklin Street has five locations in Florida and one in Atlanta, and 325 employees. In 2019, the firm exceeded $1.1 billion in company-wide sales volume.

IT at Franklin Street

Franklin Street’s IT team includes three full-time professionals, including Chief Information Officer Tom Rybak. Rybak brought in Atlas Professional Services several years ago to assist his internal IT team at Franklin Street with special projects.

“Atlas has helped us with things like firewall issues that were beyond our knowledge, some domain controller issues and also with helping us think through bigger-picture planning,” Rybak said. “Atlas has been a great partner. It’s like asking a friend for advice. I trust them and know they’re providing honest feedback.”

A Laughing Matter

Anyone who has had direct experience with Atlas’s company culture or follows us on social media knows humor is a key part of who we are. Rybak says keeping things light is a trait he embraces at Franklin Street, too.

“For me, humor comes naturally. I’m fairly sarcastic. I always say it’s a sign of intelligence,” Rybak jokes.

Since Rybak joined Franklin Street 10 years ago – originally as IT Director while also overseeing the marketing department for several years – he’s concentrated on creating an environment that “doesn’t feel like work.” From embracing humor to hosting happy hours and themed department parties to playing music in the office, Rybak likes to keep things casual.

“Of course, there’s still a level of respect and accountability that we expect from our team, but we have a lot of fun and a lot of team-building activities,” Rybak said. “We pride ourselves on our culture and our people.”

Similarly, the Atlas office is equipped with a pool table, video games, lounge space and is the site of frequent birthday and holiday celebrations. And, there is joking aplenty, with co-workers and clients, like Rybak.

“I have Polish grandparents and Tom is Polish and speaks the language fluently,” said Atlas CEO Greg Zolkos. “When Tom needs help our help with something, he has to use the code word: pierogi.”

To conclude with a quote from former U.S. president Dwight D. Eisenhower: “A sense of humor is part of the art of leadership, of getting along with people, of getting things done.”

View the full article here.


Orlando Industrial Fast Facts – May 2019

No alt text provided for this imageSource: CoStar


Adding Value

The text below is excerpted from “A Message from the President” By ICSC President and CEO Tom McGee.

This vitality in our industry is reflected at RECon, with its increasingly diverse variety of exhibitors. Each year we see innovative new tenants and new technologies designed to make centers more entertaining, convenient, and efficient. Municipalities and other public agencies also recognize the importance of RECon, eager as they are to attract developments that will make their communities more vibrant and prosperous.

All of this activity does not get the attention it deserves as media often focus more on the challenges facing our industry, and less on the way we are meeting those challenges. It is worth noting that, for all of the news about retail closings, the national retail occupancy rate actually rose slightly last year, to 95 percent by December, according to national commercial real estate research and services firm Franklin Street.

Our industry is continuing to evolve to meet new market trends, as owners revitalize and reinvent their properties with new tenants, uses and technology. And that is something to celebrate.


Franklin Street hires Research Assistant

Matt Alexander
Date added: June 17, 2015
Submission Type: New Hire
Current employer: Franklin Street
Current title/position: Research Assistant
Industry: Commercial Real Estate
Duties/responsibilities: Alexander works with Franklin Street executives on providing market and property-related research including market studies, global and national economic trends, and general industry research.

View PDF