Outer Banks Commercial Real Estate Newsletter: December 2020

by Larry Lombardi, on Dec 9, 2020 8:24:18 AM

Bobby Harrell

OBX CRE Spotlight

Bobby Harrell

Owner/Broker, Harrell & Associates

Harrell Logo

  • Lived in Manteo, NC since 1981
  • Married to Deloris Harrell
  • Two daughters, Kate and Tess Harrell, who work in the family business  

How long have you been working in commercial real estate?

37 years

How did you first get into real estate?

I grew up on a family farm in eastern North Carolina, and actively farmed for 10 years after graduating from NC State in 1971. In 1981 I became involved in managing and developing farmland for European investors and insurance companies. My experience in management and development led to the opportunity to do consulting work in Saudi Arabia and during that time, in 1983, I obtained my broker's license.

The development and commercial side of the business was most appealing to me so, even though our company is full-service, I have focused mainly on the commercial side during my career.

outlets nags head

What was your first CRE transaction?

Sold the sound-front acreage tract in Nags Head that later became the home of the well-known Tanger Outlet Mall.
What was your most memorable CRE transaction?
Selling a 400-acre ocean-to-sound tract on Hatteras Island. Parcels of this size do not often become available in Dare County.
What's your favorite part of working in CRE?
I particularly enjoy planning and developing raw land into its highest and best use.
What’s the biggest misconception about CRE?
That it's easy work with big money pay days. One transaction, due to a recession, was tied up for 12 years.
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How would you describe the commercial real estate market in northeastern NC and the Outer Banks?
The commercial real estate market in Eastern NC and the Outer Banks is definitely evolving. The northern portions of Currituck County and the Elizabeth City areas are attracting more regional and national tenants. While the Outer Banks has attracted some national tenants, we are now beginning to see more interest, due to the extended tourist season of the area, as well as a growing year-round population.
After a very strong 2020 season, despite a later start and pandemic restrictions, I believe the Outer Banks finds itself in a desirable position for future development.
Can you share one great piece of advice for someone looking to buy/lease commercial property or land?
Do the necessary research to anticipate future growth. Seek out the most knowledgeable professionals in the marketplace, and listen to their advice.
What is your favorite thing about the Outer Banks?
On a personal level, it's our fall season. We are lucky to enjoy beautiful weather, great fishing and short lines at some of the best restaurants found in any travels.
What's your favorite way to spend your free time?
I particularly enjoy my time outside, spent between our Roanoke Island home and our cottage on Ocracoke Island — that is our "getaway" whenever possible.

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Commercial Lot at Tulls Creek Center

1.28 Acre Lot available at Tulls Creek Center for lease, sale, or build-to-suit. Centrally located in the commercial hub of Moyock, NC. Neighboring retailers include Food Lion, Dollar Tree, Dollar General, Taylor's Do It Centers, Advance Auto Parts, Burger King, Sonic, A.J. Gators, Subway and Navy Federal.

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Topics:Commercial Real EstateEconomic DevelopmentCurrituck CountyOuter Banks