Florida Businesses Take Strange New Directions, Face Economic Pessimism
By Space Coast Daily // March 16, 2019
A national dip in business optimism may be leading to an air of economic uncertainty with an unintentional financial effect on local businesses. Whether by chance or by need to branch out, some Florida businesses are expanding beyond the realm of conventional services and this shift towards creativity and outside of the box thinking may help revitalize local economies.
Initial concerns began in southwest Florida as local business executives aired their concerns over the strength of the local economy.
While experts disagree that the local business climate is experiencing a downturn, there are legitimate fears to be had regarding nationwide markets that could have subtle effects on local businesses that are difficult to trace back to their source.
Yet the sheer number of executives polling towards the negative has taken a drop from 76 percent down to 47 percent of responses being positive as compared to this time last year.
It is important to note that a negative outlook on positive results can lead to decisions that become self-fulfilling prophecies and ignoring the psychological effect of negative predictions is a dangerous move.
Further fanning the flames are recent concerns over the state’s proposed deregulation of state power companies in a move that seeks to offer more consumer choice over their providers of electricity. These companies have since asserted deregulation will lead to instability and chaos in the event of a natural disaster.
Various business owners have either responded well or simply have good incidental timing in the cases of those who are seeking to expand their client base to make up for these looming issues.
In the unusual case of those seeking to preserve the gopher tortoise and its shrinking habitat, construction of a single cottage for a tortoise can cost upwards of $1,000 and a niche market for habitat construction has blossomed accordingly.
With wildlife preservation laws requiring the majority of these tortoises to be relocated within 100 miles of their original habitat, finding a builder within a local community can be no small feat.
These expansions have led to business owners requiring a nuanced understanding of tax codes to avoid running afoul of Florida tax law. Construction businesses and their deductions are fairly clear-cut, but in the case of homeowners seeking tax relief after building animal shelters on their property, the law may not seem so clearly defined after all.
Enduring market shifts is simply the nature of businesses in general, as often restated by small businesses advisors. Paying close attention to local markets and changing the goals or services you offer in order to meet customer needs makes for good public relations and strong returns as long as those investments make for consistent returns.
The point where many businesses fail rests in an inability to seek opportunities as a failure of allowing them to slip by undetected. After all, not many construction businesses would consider building tortoise habitats on a whim.
While the labor market remains constrictive following recent recessions and unrest, diversity may be one of the few options Florida residents can turn to in order to make ends meet.
Without a major change in the national attitude towards the economy and businesses as a whole, it is difficult to forecast a positive change for local job opportunities. Leaving this rut may take several years or major political upheaval.
Until then, Florida and its businesses are likely to continue along a path of restricted growth for as long as they stay within service boundaries to which they have become accustomed. Those who are treading off the beaten path are seeing interesting returns and more positive attention least of all from the local tortoise population.
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