Chamber Chat - Business Climate in Lee County

Feb 26

By Meg Moss


What is the business climate in Lee County? I often get asked this question, or in more general terms, “how are things going?” From the looks of the calendar at the Growth Alliance Chamber of Commerce office, I would have to say that things are going really well.


There are ribbon cuttings coming up celebrating chamber members who are relocating within Sanford.  Several are moving because of their need for an increased footprint due to expanding business.


That’s the case for the Camping Store. Owner Tom Sciacca recently moved the store from a location on Hawkins Avenue, to the old Lee Builder Mart located at 1000 North Horner Boulevard. They needed additional floor space to showcase their products. The store sells items related to survival, camping, emergency preparedness, bushcraft, tips for the home, safety and self defense. They started off by selling their camping and survival gear online only, and then started a retail space in Sanford about a year ago. Already outgrowing their original retail space is a good problem to have. Their old retail space was 1,800 square feet, and the new retail space gives them 700 additional square feet. We’ll be celebrating with them on March 1st at 10:00 am and anyone is welcome to join us!


Ada’s Bookkeeping and Tax Service has been located on Fields Drive since I can remember, but not long after tax season is over this year, you’ll be able to find them in their brand new building on North Moore Street. In 1988, the firm was started as Ada's Bookkeeping & Tax Service by Ada Douglas. In 2010, they incorporated under the name RC Accounting Corp. to add Randall Douglas and Candie Carlyle, Ada's grandchildren. 


Hometown Flooring, owned by Anthony Hall has relocated from its 1,800 square foot location on Tramway Road, to a 5,000 square foot facility at 1901 Keller Andrews Road. Hometown Flooring offers vinyl, laminate, tile, carpet and hardwoods. Hall indicated that the new facility allows him to have more warehouse space for inventory, additional office space for a growing number of staff members, and a much larger showroom for the flooring. The various flooring styles are laid out for customers to see, and even walk on. Hometown Flooring is Hall’s second Sanford business. About four years ago, he started ABC Restoration, a water and fire restoration business. He saw it as a business niche that Sanford didn’t have, so he stepped out to become an entrepreneur and start his own business. ABC Restoration took off, and so did Hall’s frequent need for flooring. That led to him starting Hometown Flooring. Both businesses are now located in the Keller Andrews location.  


In addition to small businesses expanding their spaces, there are new small businesses opening as well. In 2016, we celebrated ribbon cuttings with 20 businesses, which represented over 150 new jobs. And in just the past two months, several new small businesses have joined the Chamber. Anita and Dwayne Barber have joined the Chamber in order to showcase their LulaRoe business; Wilson Rd Self Storage opened; Tarheel IT Consultants, owned by Jay Calendine, has been in business just over a year and has now joined the Chamber. Reliable Tax and Accounting Services, owned by Jim Myers opened on North Horner Boulevard – right next door to Sanford Real Estate and across the street from Express Employment Professionals. Jennifer Oldham Williams has stepped out on her own to start Jennifer Williams Designs, a residential and commercial interior design company. Williams can design new spaces, remodel current spaces, and stage homes that are on the market to sell.


So in answer to the question “how are things going?”, I would say they are going pretty well! 

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