Wawa, a popular convenience store along the East Coast, can make a great triple net property type to add to a real estate investor’s portfolio. Convenience stores, in general, are always in demand and are found in every community across the United States. Customers will stop in on their way home from work, after filling up their car with gas, or on a road trip to grab some snacks before hitting the road again. This constant stream of customers ensures that the triple net property type can stay in business and are a worthy sale to pursue. For investors looking to add different types of retail or diversify from other types of commercial properties for sale, a triple net real estate property like Wawa offers a great way to have a credit-worthy single tenant in a fairly hands-off property type while ensuring a consistent income stream for you. Here are some tips and tricks for buying a Wawa NNN property.
3 Things to Look For in Wawa Properties For Sale
If you’re interested in Wawa properties for sale, there are some things that can make a triple net property type different from other properties already in your portfolio. With a convenience store, many people want quick and easy in and out of the store and the parking lot. It’s all about convenience, after all! When looking for a Wawa NNN property, there are 5 key things to consider as you sift through listings to make the ideal purchase. Here are the main elements that you should take into consideration and a few questions to discuss with your broker for each ground lease.
Location, store size and parking situation:
Wawas are all over the East Coast, but if you have a certain town, city, or area you’re interested in investing in, let your broker know. If you don’t have a certain town or state in mind, consider how large of a location you want for an absolute NNN ground lease as a single tenant. While many Wawa properties for sale are similar in size and design, the parking lot may vary and that’s another thing that can have an impact on your decision and the cap rate. If there’s a morning rush or a surge of weekend travelers through the area, will the parking lot have the capacity to handle everyone?
Questions to ask yourself about location and size that will contribute to a higher cap rate:
- Do you have a preference on ground lease location? City, town, state, along a certain highway, etc.?
- Is the Wawa for sale near public transportation, a major intersection or an interstate?
- How large is the parking lot? Are there parking spaces available for handicap, family, or other specialty parking? What is the lot size?
- Inside the property, is there space for a line to form if needed? Can customers move around freely and with room for social distancing, if needed?
- How do all of these factors affect the investment grade and cap rate of the property?
- How does the price compare to other properties as an investment?
The local area, including nearby competition:
When a property is along an interstate or highway, it may attract different customers than those that are in a downtown area. You may be looking at tourists versus local residents. However, both locations can be successful stores and a wise investment! A well travelled area, whether that is locals or out-of-towners, means that your real estate type will have a consistent customer base. You should also consider what else is in the local area, aside from travel and transportation methods. Are there other property locations located across the street that may draw customers away?
Questions to consider when looking at traffic in the area
- Is the building located near an interstate, highway, or busy intersection? Does it have easy access for customers? Or is it in a brand new, lesser developed area?
- Is it easy to access when walking or taking public transportation?
- Does this location see more local residents or out of town visitors traveling through?
- Is there another chain property or company in the area that may draw customers away from this location, cap rate, and/or investment grade?
- What is the lot size for this property for sale?
- Is this building a new construction?
Market trends and property improvement to keep up with industry changes:
Businesses always want to see growth, and as markets continue to react to the COVID-19 pandemic, changes are being implemented across all industries. With convenience stores like Wawa for sale, more technology is coming into the properties, providing a higher cap rate for the property. Some convenience stores are implementing self checkout stations, which reduce the need for in-person interaction and allow for social distancing. Others are upping their hot beverage offerings, as they are becoming a popular destination for morning coffee runs as people begin to shift back to commuting and working in offices. Some stores even have begun offering mobile ordering for hot food, drinks and other items for sale, which give an added level of convenience to customers. Is this building for sale ready for these trends and future changes?
Questions to consider for improvement and market trends:
- Does this building for sale currently have any technological advancements? Is there the ability to add them (room for expanded beverages, space for self checkout)? If the technological advancements are not brand new, do they have the capacity to be improved?
- What trends are common in the area you are buying? Are people still working from home or returning to the office? Are there changes that need to be implemented at the NNN properties for sale to accommodate these lifestyle changes of the customer base?
4 Tips to Buy a Wawa NNN Property
These questions can guide your conversation with your broker or other team members. From there, you will have a better idea of what you’re looking for. But that’s still just the beginning. There are still filtering through available Wawas for sale and price negotiations leading up to the transaction. In order to make your Wawa NNN property purchasing process as smooth as possible, here are 4 tips that can help you and your team through the research and decision making stages for acquiring high cap rate NNN properties.
Tip #1: Have a strong team to help you find the right deals.
When you find the right net lease team, like a broker who specializes in NNNs, they can help you know what to look for and how to fit a triple net Wawa property into your current portfolio and goals. They can ask the right questions to help you identify properties that make sense for you, and will have the inside knowledge for the industry and any industry trends you should know. For example, they can help determine if a specific property has an appropriate lot size. They can help you narrow down your search in a specific way, and sort through the triple net listings, sending you ones that meet your requests, and assist you with ensuring the transaction is completed in a timely manner. They may even have some early knowledge of Wawas coming up for sale or net lease soon, so you can get ahead of the competition in making an offer if it’s the right fit.
Tip #2: Figure out what you need for your absolute NNN property.
By knowing what you need and want in a Wawa, like it’s likelihood of high traffic or its specific lot size, you will be able to help your broker find listings that meet your criteria. If you have a set budget in mind, then this information can help to further narrow the triple net listings that get passed along to you for your review. The questions above can be a great place to start, and can guide some of these conversations as you begin the process of figuring out what you need in your Wawa. These needs can help you and your team set expectations for what might be possible when buying a Wawa.
Tip #3: Review the listings carefully.
Once your broker has taken that list of requirements for your property type and comes back with relevant commercial properties, you can start to go through them to narrow down which ones you want to research more carefully. Make sure you note what you don’t like about certain NNN properties, so that this can be taken into consideration for future searches. If you don’t understand something or have a question about something noted in the listing, like lot size or cap rate, let your broker know. Have open and honest discussions with your team, so that as you review each triple net listing, everyone understands how to move forward.
Tip #4: Ask questions.
As you go through the process, you may have questions about the process. If you’re working with a commercial net lease professional, they can help guide you through the entire process. They’re there to answer your questions and make sure you find the right triple net property for your business. Let them know if you don’t understand something, and if something seems unusual to you, you can be provided with further clarification on the NNN properties you’re interested in and their cap rate.
Experts Can Help You Find the Right Wawa NNN Property
Now that you know what you need to look for when searching for a Wawa NNN property, it’s time to find the right real estate partner for the job. By working with an experienced professional who knows the triple net property market, the hot trends, and an exceptional cap rate, you will be set up with a team who can help you succeed. The Sands Investment Group convenience store team has helped close hundreds of transactions for investors just like you. Contact the team today by calling 844.4.SIG.NNN or sending an email to to inquire about how we can help you find the right Wawa NNN property.