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6 VIP Management Tips for Commercial Real Estate Brokerage

In commercial real estate brokerage today, the clients that you serve are not all the same.  Some are better than others.  You will know the criteria for that segmentation.  They may have more buildings, better buildings, or be more motivated to act in commercial real estate soon.

(N.B. these ideas are also sent out to regularly to our friends in Commercial Real Estate Online Snapshot to help amplify brokerage results…. Get your access here)

Here is a video to help you establish your VIP client management system at the start of 2106.

 

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How to Use Market Suspense in Commercial Real Estate Marketing

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Tell a marketing story in a staged way.

When you have a high quality commercial property to sell or lease, the marketing campaign that you create can be carefully crafted for maximum suspense and impact. Don’t just advertise something in an ordinary way and wait for things to happen.

(N.B. these ideas are also sent out to regularly to our friends in Commercial Real Estate Online Snapshot to help amplify brokerage results…. Get your access here)

Take the time to think about how you can build on the promotional campaign momentum and implement the campaign strategically. A good quality property always deserves maximum promotional effort.

Exclusive Please!

Before I go too far into this topic I will say that these rules apply to exclusive listings only. You would not spend the time or effort on any openly listed property. Too many open listings in your group of properties can be and usually will be a distraction to what you are doing in growing your real estate business.

Marketing Message

So what is this ‘suspense’ idea all about? You can time your entire campaign for the best results, and you can put into it a number of special ideas and concepts. The effort and creativity that you apply to the process will have direct results in the outcomes you achieve (inbound inquiry and inspections). Here are some things to help with your marketing of property listings:

  • Best time of year – some properties are suited to a marketing campaign at a particular time of year. Understand exactly who or what your target market may be, and then look at how and when they would choose property activity and movement.
  • Best days of the week – there are many different advertising methods that you can use with most marketing processes. Stagger the campaigns across a period of weeks both online and offline.
  • Call your short list of qualified people – check out the people in your database and give them the chance to see the property at the earliest opportunity after the campaign start. Call the people that you know and get them to the property early.
  • Mix online and offline promotions – we all know the massive advantages of the internet in promoting commercial property today. That being said, the traditional newspapers and mail out processes still apply as part of property marketing. So mix and match your online and offline promotional methods.
  • Priority placement on the commercial portals – this is a vendor or client paid cost. Priority placement on the online property portals is a valuable strategy to adopt with the right properties. Pitch the idea in your listing presentation; show the client why the idea is so important.
  • Blog some editorial – every top agent should have a blog that they load material into. When a top quality listing comes onto the market, the blog is a great place to talk about the listing. Use photos and good quality promotional copy on your blog, then feed the link to the article through your social media channels.
  • Social media – from the previous point, you can see how the blog process and social media interaction go well. Most agents have a ‘bland and ordinary’ approach to social media, offering nothing (or very little) of value or interest. Create your blog and fill it with great material; then circulate that material online and through your social media contacts.
  • Pre-release and a staged campaign – spread things out when it comes to promoting a property. Set up a few small adverts for the pre-release and then build the story about the listing in a series of different adverts.
  • Using different advertising layouts – in any exclusive listing property promotion, the advertising layout should have 3 alternatives and be used in that way so that the property tells a new and fresh story across the media channels that you are using online and offline.
  • Target market focus – know exactly who you are connecting into as part of the property promotion. That awareness will help you with your campaign structure and timing.
  • Keywords – some if not most properties should be described in the ways that the search engines are being used by inquiring tenants or buyers (as the case may be). A list of keywords can be fed into your property marketing so that the adverts online are attracting more hits and interest via the search portals.
  • Photos professionally taken – great photos always attract readership. Get professional photos taken as part of your marketing budget.
  • Dot points of features – the strengths of the property should be clear and precisely laid out in the advert so you can pull in the target market. The dot points should not be the generic ‘fluff’ used by every other agent or broker in your city. Make the dot points special and specific to the listing. Short precise points of focus about the property should be used.
  • Brief narrative – don’t say too much in your listing advertising. Say enough to get people to call you and use white space simplicity in the layout. Adults don’t read long promotional statements about property; they want the simple facts, and then they will consider if there is a need to go further with a telephone call and or an inspection.

From all of these things, you can see how suspense and creativity have a role to play in property marketing today. Build your commercial real estate marketing accordingly.

(N.B. these ideas are also sent out to regularly to our friends in Commercial Real Estate Online Snapshot to help amplify brokerage results…. Get your access here)

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Procrastination Cures in Commercial Real Estate Brokerage

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There are all sorts of procrastination problems in commercial real estate brokerage today. Don’t let them hold you back or derail your business efforts. Break through the barriers and issues that are holding you back. Time is your most valuable resource, so use it well and dedicate your time to the things that really matter.

(N.B. these ideas are also sent out to regularly to our friends in Commercial Real Estate Online Snapshot to help amplify brokerage results…. Get your access here)

Get your business diversions under control and stop procrastinating. Know what is important to your market share, client list, listings, and commissions. Somewhere in that awareness will be listings and leads. You (and only you) are the person to resolve the ‘quandary’.

Your key resource?

So, as I have said, the most important resource that you have is time. Use your time wisely and specifically. Yes, you will have challenging and difficult things to deal with every day, but do the work in an organized and specific way; that is how you build your real estate business. Are you ready to move ahead in the industry?

Solutions to common problems?

Here are the solutions to help solve procrastination, given the typical commercial property agent problems:

  • Unrealistic clients – some clients will waste your time, so don’t let that happen. You are (or should be) the property expert, so tell the clients what you can recommend with the property listing and or the challenge of the client; if they won’t listen, then you have a choice as to whether you should take on the property and the challenge. Don’t take on a listing or client requirement that is too far off the market. Give good reasons for your recommendations and be very specific when working with clients. Be prepared to walk away from an unrealistic client in a professional way.
  • Too many meetings – some brokerage businesses are overly controlling of their agents and brokers. The fact of the matter is that top agents don’t need to be controlled; they know what they have to do and they will go and do it if you let them. One brokerage meeting per week is more than enough to control and direct a real estate business, and that meeting should be at a time of day that is not ‘peak’.   On another note, any of your junior agents and trainees should be controlled through direct mentoring and not frequent meetings involving others. Allow your good agents and brokers to get out into the market each and every day. ‘Kill’ the extra meeting requirements.
  • Complex listings – some of the larger properties take a lot of research and investigation before the property is released to the market. That is your job and you can’t avoid the full property investigation requirements. However, when the investigation is done, the mundane listing issues can be done by others. Make sure you have the right administrative support to get this extra work done.
  • Complex marketing campaigns – this is a special problem to watch. Your marketing has to be specific to the property and the location. You should be taking a good degree of time in structuring and releasing your marketing campaigns on your exclusive listings. Sure, open listings are a different situation and they should not take much of your time, but differentiate your marketing efforts and only spend extended time on your exclusive listings.
  • Unqualified inquiry – we have all been impacted by people that seem to say that they can purchase or lease a listing. Deeper qualification about their market awareness, intentions, budget, and inquiry will prevent you spending too much time on ‘time wasting’ people.

So you need a plan to solve these things. What could you do with that plan? What could you put into it? Some of the answers here will help you get your plan in motion.

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Local Lead Generation Rules in Commercial Real Estate Brokerage

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Establish your lead generation system for commercial real estate brokerage

In commercial real estate brokerage, you can find plenty of opportunity locally when you delve into the factors that support and drive the business community. When you understand the business community, you can turn that understanding into property leasing and sales activity.

(N.B. these ideas are also sent out to regularly to our friends in Commercial Real Estate Online Snapshot to help amplify brokerage results…. Get your access here)

Property Investments thrive and change when the local businesses are growing and relocating. As part of your brokerage prospecting model, get to know what businesses are doing and what they are thinking when it comes to growth and location.

Don’t be ‘Average’

Far too many agents and brokers wait for the listing opportunity to come to them through some inbound telephone call to the local real estate office; that is the slow way to grow market share.

If you want to get anywhere faster in our industry, then get out into the property market daily and talk to local business owners.

Find out what they are thinking about the pressures of their business and industry segment; some business segments are more active than others and that is what you can work with.

Ask questions about:

  • More or less space
  • Growth pressures
  • Head office changes or merges
  • New businesses moving into the location
  • Improvements serving the business needs
  • Access to transport or end user markets
  • Lease duration or end of lease
  • The decision maker involved in finding new business locations

As an extension of this idea, you can work with particular types of businesses such as:

  • Franchise groups
  • Bulky goods warehousing
  • Manufacturing
  • Storage
  • Transport

So when you put these variables into a ‘local area equation’ of prospecting for new business, you can ask some valuable questions about business intentions, shifts, pressures, and requirements. Don’t be afraid to talk to new local people.

Local area business

Most of your new business will come from the local area. You want people to remember you so get out into your zone or territory and talk to the right people in a positive and direct way. Do these things:

  1. Create a list of streets for your location where the better businesses are located.
  2. Segment the businesses in size or type.
  3. Research the leaders of each business before you make the call or contact.
  4. Look for any property pressures in the location by travelling the streets and looking for the tell-tale signs of pressured property occupancy.

The good thing here is that there will always be local businesses looking for help in finding new premises. Whilst it is always good to know the owners of properties, you should also get to know the occupants as businesses as well.

Somewhere in that owner/occupant awareness, you will find property change and churn requirements. Grow your property market on the basis of local area awareness. Talk to more people every day and build your business directly.

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Shopping Center Management Strategies that Really Work

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Shopping Center Management is largely about the customer.

The shopping centre management process is quite special in so many ways. That is why only certain brokers and agents take up the challenge of retail leasing, management, and sales. There are things to know and things to do. The benchmarks and the indicators are different in ‘retail’.

 

(N.B. these ideas are also sent out to regularly to our friends in Commercial Real Estate Online Snapshot to help amplify brokerage results…. Get your access here)

The goals and targets that are standard to the retail process are usually improving income, reducing vacancy factors, and keeping your good tenants for the long term. You could say that they are the major internal factors of property performance for a typical retail property or shopping centre today.

 

Know the Retail Factors of Influence

So what else do you need to think about? In addition to the nominated items, there are the ‘external factors’ that are harder to control. The external factors are typically shopper spending patterns, shop visits, frequency of shopping, and the amount of money spent on average per shopper. The marketing of the property will be part of the overall plan.

 

You can now see why a property performance plan is really important in any retail property today. So let’s put some of this together.

 

To keep all of these things in balance and on track there are a few business factors to implement in the running of a retail shopping centre. Here are some of them:

 

  1. Develop a business plan – A business plan in retail shopping centre performance is and should be all encompassing, generally covering all the issues of the daily running of the property and the involvement of tenants, customers, and investors. With a good business plan, you can make choices when it comes to rentals, tenant movement, renewals of leases, and property expenditure.
  2. Know your tenants and their priorities – Some tenants will be trading more successfully than others. Look for the differences to see what can be done with trading and sales. It is wise to look into gross profit and net profit margins with any tenancy group. The averages will tell you if a tenant is trading more successfully than others.
  3. Review all of your leases – The shop lease is the foundation of income recovery and growth over time; with all leases you must know how they work and what is involved in enforcing lease conditions when matters of change or risk occur. Each lease is different so you will need to build a profile of the tenant’s lease and the critical dates. Track the critical dates so you can take action early in any issue or problem.
  4. Establish a tenant retention plan – Differentiate your tenants so that you are protecting and encouraging the best tenants to stay in the property for the long term. They may need encouragement, so a tenant retention plan lets you set the rules to the process.
  5. Watch the sales and trading figures – You can watch these figures if you have the cooperation of the tenants in the property. You can gain and protect that cooperation through the terms of the lease. From those figures you create graphs that show moving annual turnover (MAT) and sales in merchandise or retail segments. Ideally the tenants in the property should have to produce turnover figures for their shop on a monthly basis. From that point it is easy to see the retail segments that are selling products well, and also the other segments that may be struggling. That is where the tenant placement and tenant mix then has a valuable strategy for the property. You can build clusters of tenants around the property so that customer interest is encouraged and sales are boosted between like or complementary tenants.
  6. Develop a marketing plan for the shopping centre – A plan of this type will allow for the retail sales seasons at different times of the year. There will also be themes for the local area and customer interest.
  7. Reduce vacancies with a tenant retention plan – The only reason you need vacancies in a property is when you are about to renovate and move tenants around. A few vacancies will give you the flexibility to change the property. When you look at the total tenant mix in a property, some tenants will be more important than others to the future of the asset. That is where the tenant mix plan comes in; you decide who you want to keep in the property and for what reason. You then build a rent a leasing plan around those factors.

 

So there are some good things that you can do here with retail shopping centre leasing. Understand the property in a comprehensive way. Then you can match the property strategically into the location and the customer demographic.

(N.B. these ideas are also sent out to regularly to our friends in Commercial Real Estate Online Snapshot to help amplify brokerage results…. Get your access here)

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Defining Market Rentals in Commercial Real Estate Leasing

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Market rents in commercial property can and will change.  Understand why and how.

When you work with the commercial property or asset, the income stream and particularly the levels of market rental within the asset will have a large impact on investment performance.

(N.B. these ideas are also sent out to regularly to our friends in Commercial Real Estate Online Snapshot to help amplify brokerage results…. Get your access here)

As the local broker or agent for the area and for the property type, it is your job to understand exactly what the market levels are doing for the property and for the location.

Consider the following market rental questions and issues as they apply to assets that you may have now for sale or for lease:

  • What is the market rental today in the property and how was that rental set? The true market rental must be something that was set through negotiation between willing and involved parties to a lease situation.  The landlord and the tenant must have been fully engaged in a property negotiation to determine the real market rental.
  • What are the differences between the tenancies when it comes to location? Some locations are importantly different when it comes to setting and negotiating rent.  Any building and any particular tenancy will have location factors to consider when looking at rent.  Make sure you inspect the properties comprehensively to identify the location differences.  Look at the strengths and weaknesses of the properties as you review income from the leases.
  • How will those differences impact in any market rental establishment or review? When there are differences in location, the market rental should be adjusted accordingly.  Assess every comparable rental and look at the strengths and weaknesses evolving from location.  Also determine the rental type in any lease, i.e gross, net, face or effective.
  • Understand the impact of any incentive that may still be active in the establishment of a tenancy and lease situation.  Incentives should be discounted from the face rental so you can understand exactly what rent is really being paid.
  • What is the permitted and legal use of the premises? The use of the premises should be similar when you are comparing properties and market rentals.  Also look at the factors of property zoning that apply to the different assets being compared.
  • How recent are the reviews undertaken? Rentals change over time so always determine the dates on which rentals would have been established in any review and market situation.  If the date of review is relatively old, you will need to look at the property trends in the location since that review.
  • Where are the comparable properties and tenancies located? What are the differences that apply to services, amenities, and improvements?  When you look at each and every property involved in a market assessment, location factors will have a big impact on the final rental outcome.  Those location factors and other variables will include ease of access, visibility, branding, local transport, highways and freeways, and also are the services and amenities applicable to each property.  That is why it is so important that you physically inspect any property involved in comparing market rentals.
  • How large are the tenancies that you are using or identifying as comparable? When you compare properties, understand the size of each tenancy space involved in each market review, and also look at the quality of the fit-out in each case.  The larger the space, the lower the level of rental per unit of area under lease and of the area of space occupied.  The quality of the fit-out will also directly impact the achieved rental.
  • Are the properties of the same type? You can only compare tenancies and properties when they are of the same type in a very similar location or precinct.  Make sure that all the factors of property use and occupancy are fully aligned in your comparisons.
  • Have you reviewed the lease documents as part of the comparison? You can always get to the complete facts of any lease market review when you look into the lease documents and the terms and situations that applied to the last rental establishment and occupancy agreement.
  • Critical dates will apply to the market review and certain understandings will also be outlined within the lease document.  Whenever and wherever possible, ask to see the lease documents that apply to the market review that you are using in the property performance and market rental assessment.

So there are some important and relevant things that you should look into and review as part of undertaking a commercial market rental assessment and property performance investigation.

Take the time to look into things comprehensively, and as part of that process inspect the properties, interview the tenants, talk to the landlord, check all elements of the documentation, and assess the rental trends for the location.

(N.B. these ideas are also sent out to regularly to our friends in Commercial Real Estate Online Snapshot to help amplify brokerage results…. Get your access here)

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How to do an Income and Rental Assessment in Commercial Real Estate Brokerage

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Not all commercial property rents are the same.

The income for a commercial Investment property will have a direct impact on the potential price that sale. On that basis the income needs to be fully understood and investigated as part of the preparation for listing.

(N.B. these ideas are also sent out to regularly to our friends in Commercial Real Estate Online Snapshot to help amplify brokerage results…. Get your access here)

Any agent or broker listing an Investment property should take the time to review everything that could have an impact on current and future property income. Look for the strengths and weaknesses that apply to the property income stream and the cash flow for the asset.

Strengths and Weaknesses

The buyers for any Investment property will always undertake a due diligence on the listing and the location; weaknesses will be found so make sure you understand where those weaknesses are and how to address them. They will be looking for things that will have an impact on property performance over time. Some problems in cash flow will have a direct influence on a negotiation for property purchase.

Rental Assessments

Here are some ideas to help you review income performance for the assets that you might take to the market for sale as an investment:

  1. The gross income for the asset in today’s terms will always be the starting point of an income assessment. Look at the actual volume of rental created from the existing leases and the tenants in occupancy. Understand the elements of cash flow that make up the income stream. Those elements will usually include rental, rental by type, outgoings, special licensed areas in the property, casual rentals, and permanent tenants.
  2. Look at the cash flow per month over a period of time. Understand the gross rental achieved each month over the last 12 months. There will be patterns to the income stream driven by the tenants in occupancy. If there are vacancy factors in the property to deal with, then that will have a reflection in the collective rental. Review the number of vacancies and the negative impact that those vacancies have on the cash flow for the asset.
  3. Understand the vacancy threat that maybe upcoming in the property tenancy mix. Some tenants will be leaving or relocating within the property, and on that basis you should develop a full understanding of how those vacancies will be handled. Some vacancies will be harder to lease than others.
  4. Property expenditure on a monthly basis will reduce the gross income to a net income. The age of the asset will have an impact on property expenditure and maintenance. Compare the expenditure in the property to other similar properties in the same location. Look at the averages, and in that way understand how your asset compares.
  5. Some of the rentals in the property would have been determined on a market rental basis. Compare that market rental to other properties of similar type in the same location. Is your property correctly rented, or under rented?

Simple strategies of investigation including these issues mentioned will help you fully understand the income stream for the investments that you sell, lease, or manage.

Different Income Streams

From the examples provided you can see that there are many different elements of income to look into and review. Some of those income factors can be improved over time, and that’s where the skills of a leasing and or property management specialist are quite valuable.

As an agent or broker, develop a comprehensive investigation process applying to the analysis of the income stream in any investment performance. An income checklist will be very useful as part of that process.

(N.B. these ideas are also sent out to regularly to our friends in Commercial Real Estate Online Snapshot to help amplify brokerage results…. Get your access here)

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How to Build More Client Collateral into Your Commercial Real Estate Business

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Put more clients into your commercial real estate brokerage business.

If you want to get anywhere in commercial real estate brokerage, you will need good clients and plenty of them.  Those clients should be assessed for long term value and opportunity.  Then you will have to make some choices as to who and how you will work with those clients.  It’s a simple and yet important equation to watch and shape.

(N.B. these ideas are also sent out to regularly to our friends in Commercial Real Estate Online Snapshot to help amplify brokerage results…. Get your access here)

Brokerage Facts to Remember

Think about these facts:

 

  • Some clients will transact commercial real estate many times over a period of years
  • Some clients will need varied services to stabilize and improve their portfolios over time
  • When you consider the different prospects and clients that you can work with, the value of their property and business will vary
  • Commissions will vary between property and client types
  • Some of the people that you deal with will be more realistic than others when it comes to marketing, inspecting, and negotiating. A degree of conditioning will always be required to move most deals ahead.

 

Establish Your Client System

 

If you take these issues and work with them, soon you will move into some facts and key decisions regards clients.  I like to look at things this way:

 

  1. Set up some client value plans – they are plans that assess how you can provide special value and services to special clients. The object being here that you can grow trust and relevance with your clients.
  2. Know your client’s business – when you can show the client and particularly the client that owns a business that you really understand what they do and how they do it, you can position yourself for better leads and listings over time.
  3. You can systemize your contact cycles – if you have different client types and levels in your database, you can devote different levels of contact and service. That is where your VIP clients and your database become really important.
  4. Think regional and think local – there are always two levels of business to tap into. The local people that are looking for local property, and the regional people looking to move into the area.  You should have a marketing process for both.
  5. Seek referrals from all – If you work with many new clients, don’t forget to activate the referrals questions at the right time. Soon you will see new relationships start with new people.

 

When you focus all your business efforts on clients, the commercial real estate market place makes a lot more sense.  You can find the leads and the commission opportunities faster and more directly; in some cases, you will avoid the threat of competition in converting the listing.  Are you ready to build your real estate business?

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6 Highly Effective Tips for Creating More Commercial Real Estate Listings

business people meeting
Establish your commercial real estate listing system.

Every commercial real estate agent or broker needs plenty of listings in an ongoing way if they are to grow their market share locally, and command a reasonable result from a commission perspective. They need to identify the right clients, the quality properties, and the future business opportunities.

(N.B. these ideas are also sent out to regularly to our friends in Commercial Real Estate Online Snapshot to help amplify brokerage results…. Get your access here)

In simple terms every agent or broker should be tuned to the issues within the property market locally so that new listings can be created in the right way at the right time. Every agent or broker should develop a specific process for finding and creating new listings.

Its Mainly Local

I put an emphasis here on the local property market, and that is specifically because most listings and most transactions will come from the local area in any town or city. You really do need to know the local people interested in commercial real estate, the property types, and the locations comprehensively. A comprehensive awareness of the local property market will help you find the listings and the opportunities.

As a special note here, it is worth mentioning that exclusivity is critical when it comes to the listing creation process. You simply have to convert to listings exclusively if you want to control your market and convert more transactions. If you are struggling with exclusive listing conversion now, then revisit your professional services, your listing pitch, and your client contact methods. Look the ways in which you can become more relevant to the local property market and the people within it.

6 Ways to Create More Listings Faster

Here are some specific ideas to help you create more listings from your location and within the commercial real estate marketplace:

  1. Concentrate into a zone or zones – look at your location to identify the best zones and the best precincts where property churn and activity can be sustained for the long term. Look at where the businesses want to locate and the investors want to purchase property. Those particular precincts will be the areas where you should be focusing your attention and your prospecting processes.
  2. Repeat the contact process – it takes time to tap into the quality clients and property owners locally. They need to trust you as the industry specialist that they need. It may take many weeks, months, or years for that person to move to the next level of property activity. At that time, they need to remember you and trust you as the person to take their property challenge to finality. On that basis you really do need to repeat the contact process with all of the people in your database in a regular and ongoing way. You need to be relevant and special when it comes to commercial real estate for your town or city. You need to be better than your competition in every way possible.
  3. Specialize – take the time and the effort to specialize your real estate services within one or two property types within a limited or finite location. Make sure that there is enough business within that location for you to generate a reasonable income over the coming years ahead. There is no point in specializing within a property type that has limited interest and churn from the marketplace.
  4. Recognise VIP’s – some clients will be unique and special. The same observation can be made with prospects and industry professionals. Segment your ordinary clients and prospects differently from the VIPs that are in your marketplace. Treat the VIPs differently as they can provide you with extra business and repeat business throughout the year. Define a VIP client for your location by type and by category. That will then help you when it comes to your prospecting activity.
  5. Use multiple marketing processes – there are many different ways to market your services and on that basis you should be using the marketing processes that are effective and direct. Monitor the results you get from the local area marketing. Understand the differences and the opportunities to be obtained through marketing in social media, newspapers, direct mail, cold calling, industry portals, and websites. Mix and match your marketing activities to the channels that work for you, and most particularly those marketing channels that produce plenty of inbound inquiry. If the telephone is not ringing for you today with fresh new inquiry, then you have an issue both with your listings, your market share, and your marketing processes.
  6. Make your messages memorable – as you connect with new people locally, do so in a way that helps them remember you as the industry specialist. When you again approach them to talk about property matters, that industry specialist relevance will help make the relationship more valuable overtime and strengthen the opportunities that may arise. A simple telephone call can be followed up with a letter or business card. A simple meeting can be followed up with a letter or some other form of relevant industry information. In making your messages memorable, you can build a level of trust and professionalism as the local commercial real estate broker. That is exactly the image you require in growing your professional profile.

As logical as these six processes may seem in creating new business for commercial real estate brokerage, many if not most agents do not develop the six strategies specifically and sufficiently. That then leaves plenty of new business on the table for the astute agent or broker to identify and nurture.

Our business is one of specialty, trust, and service; remember those facts as you strive to improve your market share and client relevance over time.

(N.B. these ideas are also sent out to regularly to our friends in Commercial Real Estate Online Snapshot to help amplify brokerage results…. Get your access here)

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Prescription for a Healthy Database in Commercial Real Estate Brokerage

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Use your address book as a foundation for new business growth in Commercial Real Estate.

If you’re going to get anywhere in commercial real estate brokerage you need a comprehensive database that covers the marketplace for you. In simple terms, you need a healthy database that is up to date and growing in a regular and ongoing way.

(N.B. these ideas are also sent out to regularly to our friends in Commercial Real Estate Online Snapshot to help amplify brokerage results…. Get your access here)

It is very hard to establish a career in commercial real estate today without a reasonable database to support ongoing contact and listing opportunities. The people that you know today are the sources of future opportunity if you work them correctly and directly; the need to be nurtured and shaped into the next sales, leasing, or property management appointment. Strategy and effort will help those outcomes.

Assess What Clients and Systems You Have Now

Look at your database activities as they exist today and decide how you can improve the depth of the data and the quality of the clients in the list. Understand where the next opportunities are within that list. Start talking to the right people in an ongoing way.

Here are some specific rules to help you establish a healthy database in your commercial real estate business as a broker or an agent:

  1. Segmentation – split the database into zones, price ranges, customer types, and property types. In that way you can successfully use the search facility to put together people and opportunities.  Make it easy to find the right people when you need them or when you have the right property to market.
  2. Up to date information – the data that you put into your list today is to be shaped and maintained over time. That information will change as will the property requirements of the clients and prospects that you know. Establish a contact program that allows you to maintain relevant and real information relating to each person and their current property situation. Look for pressures and the changes that they could be experiencing.
  3. Location based – in most towns and cities, property requirements will be centralized into particular streets and property types. On that basis you should focus your prospecting activities into a defined and active geographical zone. Assess your territory for the pockets of priority and property change. Look for the next levels of activity that you can tap into within the location.
  4. VIP Clients – some clients are better than others. Understand what a client should be for you and rank your clients on the basis of price sensitivity, timing, and location. When you find the right listing, you can make the direct contact in a relevant and real way.
  5. Email and Document integration – a good database will integrate into e-mail messaging, and document storage. Every communication and every document involving each and every client should be suitably stored and referred to through the database. Ideally, you want to access previous communications, messages, and documents easily and effectively.
  6. Marketing integration – when you get an enquiry for a particular type of property or perhaps a listing, that enquiry should be entered into your database. The subsequent dispatch of marketing information should occur from the database. Every brochure, listing, campaign, and method of sale or lease should be accommodated and managed through the database software program.
  7. Remove redundancies – don’t let redundant information destabilize your database. Every person and entry in your client list needs to be maintained for accuracy and relevance. Remove the redundant information in a continual and ongoing way. Enter new information daily from every meeting, conversation, listing enquiry, inspection, and negotiation.
  8. New information – given that you should be focusing all of your client contact and prospecting into a particular zone of your town or city, there will be new parcels of information that you can capture every day regards business owners, investors, developers, and owner occupiers. Carefully consider the categories, the segments, and the contact processes within the database that can then allow you to effectively capture the new information as you receive it.

If you are serious about commercial real estate brokerage, then you will be needing a database to support your activities in a regular and ongoing way.

Don’t take too long to understand that basic fact and the importance of creating your client list; start building your list and the necessary new relationships with valuable property people locally. That’s how you will grow your market share across sales, leasing, and property management.

(N.B. these ideas are also sent out to regularly to our friends in Commercial Real Estate Online Snapshot to help amplify brokerage results…. Get your access here)

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8 Tips to Grow Commercial Property Management Portfolios

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Assess the buildings in your commercial property management market.

The commercial property management business is quite special in so many different ways and the same can be said for retail property management. From a portfolio of managed buildings, as an agent or broker you can generate many sales and leasing opportunities over time.

(N.B. these ideas are also sent out to regularly to our friends in Commercial Real Estate Online Snapshot to help amplify brokerage results…. Get your access here)

The Rule to Remember

There is one specific thing to remember here. Property investors require specialized help in an ongoing way when it comes to optimizing property performance, improving the tenancy mix, maximizing cash flow, and serving both tenants and visitors to the property.

If you really understand property performance and how to enhance it, then that can be a good way for you to build your real estate business.

Are you the ‘Go to’ Property Manager?

Given that you should understand the local property market in a comprehensive way, you can be the best person to provide targeted solutions to the clients that you serve. Those solutions can be matched to the property, the tenancy mix, and the client. That’s how you grow a property management portfolio over time.  Be specific and be real in the way in which you serve the commercial property and the client.

Show the client that you really have a grasp of the industry, the management process, and local tenants.  There are some clever ways to do that.

Here are some other strategies to help you grow a property management portfolio:

  1. Look at your location so that you understand where the best assets and buildings are located. When you manage, lease, and sell properties in the prime locations, your image and profile as a local agent will escalate quite quickly. Tell the local property market about your recent major appointments in management.
  2. Find the better properties through deliberate assessment. Check out the properties for income potential, vacancy exposure, tenant popularity, and lease stability. You can learn a lot about particular properties by talking to the occupants, the landlord, and other businesses in the proximity.
  3. Connect with the better landlords so that you can convert ongoing leads and transactions through well established relationships. The property owners locally will fall into different categories. Understand how you can serve individual property owners, corporations, public companies, small investors, and property trusts. In any town or city, there will be plenty of people in each category to connect and work with.
  4. Use a professional software program for all of your property managements. It is a known fact that you cannot control and manage complex assets without using a significantly proven and well tested property management software program. When you have a number of tenants in a building there will be many active issues and things to control. The property management software needs to cover the bigger factors such lease documentation, rental cash flow, occupancy compliance, maintenance, budgeting, and financial performance. There is no way of managing a complex building without the right software to help you.
  5. Integrate and assess your tenant lists so you know what is happening in a property and across a location. The tenants in a building will tell you a lot about the location and other businesses nearby. That market intelligence is valuable.
  6. Improve property performance so that your services can be seen to be valuable in the bigger picture of property growth and change. When you are successful in turning around a difficult property, poor tenant mix, or refurbishment project, tell the local property people about that through articles, editorials, and social media.
  7. Portfolio growth with any of your clients is a possibility. If you have some bigger clients in your portfolio, they are very likely to be candidates for alternative services such as project refurbishment, leasing, tenant relocations, and vacancy minimization. You can have a strategy for each.
  8. Fees per management should be critically assessed so that you get the fees for the job involved. So many agents under quote to win a property management appointment. That is a recipe for disaster. Know every property for what it is and its demands, and then decide how much professional time you will need to devote to managing it on a weekly basis. Set your fees accordingly. It is easy to work out just how many hours you should be devoting to managing a property; from that point it is simply a matter of determining how much your time is worth.

There are always new commercial property clients to be served and properties to be managed locally. Use some of these points as methods to find the right properties and the best clients for your real estate business.

(N.B. these ideas are also sent out to regularly to our friends in Commercial Real Estate Online Snapshot to help amplify brokerage results…. Get your access here)