In commercial real estate agency today, you can create a ‘checklist’ approach to the property sales process. This procedure can help you be far more effective as an agent with your clients and with the marketing of the property.
In simple terms you can create a ‘sales timetable’ to keep you on track with the most important things relating to the client and the listing. You could say that the approach is a way of keeping you organised on the issues that matter.
Top agents are quite focused when it comes to clients and listings. The ‘checklist’ approach helps with the focus that you need. Here is a list of items that can be considered and merged by agents into a ‘checklist’ for commercial property sales.
Finding out all the facts about the market in the local area.
Understanding the property as it exists today, including improvements, services, and amenities.
Determining the client’s priorities and requirements when it comes to the sale.
Presenting and pitching your services in a way that matches the property as it sits in the market.
Listing the property accurately with due regard for property details and facts. If you make errors here, they will come back to ‘haunt’ you later.
Determining your services to be provided to the client and the property could be very relevant. You may need to market the property in a particular way. Make the right choices.
Protecting your commissions with a legally enforceable and correct agents appointment
Getting vendor paid marketing funds to promote the property to the market
Choosing the best method of sale to generate inspections and enquiries
Resolving property issues and presentational factors in preparation for marketing
Creating a relevant and high level marketing strategy
Planning the best ways to inspect the property
Releasing the property to the market
Direct marketing of the property to qualified buyers in your database
Tracking incoming property enquiry
Taking inspections to and around the property
Resolving questions and issues that potential buyers may have with the property
Negotiating accurately and effectively between the parties
Getting offers on a contract in a legally correct and accurate way
Closing on the offer between the seller and the buyer
Moving the property transaction toward settlement.
Satisfying any subject to provisions relating to the contract
Settlement satisfaction in accordance with the client’s instructions and the contract of sale.
Asking for referral business
Keeping in close contact with your clients after the initial transaction is completed.
When you look at the list, it is easy to see why we are specialists in our industry. We can provide real value to the clients that we serve.
In commercial real estate you will be inspecting many different properties for many different reasons. Over time this can become second nature, however complacency in the property inspection can see you overlooking an important item or fact that can have a real impact in your property transaction.
Given that there are a few different property types that you will work on, you can have a checklist approach to all of them. In other words you can a specific checklist to work on each property type. For example:
Office property single level and or single tenant
Office property high rise with multiple tenants
Retail property single shop
Retail property multiple shops on single level
Retail property medium to larger size with multiple tenants
Industrial property of various sizes including warehouse and office configurations
All of these property types can be quite specific when it comes to inspecting and listing. Respect the differences and have a selection of listing checklists and questions that you would ask relative to the property type. When you do this it sends the right message to the client that you really do know what you are doing and that you have the knowledge to handle this property well.
In many situations you will be inspecting the property with the client in preparation for potential listing. For this very reason it pays to have a comprehensive approach to documenting and questioning as you move through the property.
Here are some things to incorporate into your inspection checklist:
Get the title search and legal property description before you meet with the client. This will help you will the facts of what the property is and how it is positioned in the location.
Check out the zoning and the permitted use of the property relative to the existing local development plan. If you are going to sell or lease a property, it pays to know that it is ‘legal’ in its function.
As you move through the property with the client, take notes of what is said as you may have to fall back on those notes later in evidence or in support of key negotiations. Some clients are well known for selectively telling you things about the property, and not all the issues that you should know that could impact the sale or lease. Look at the property with a questioning mind; look for the issues and the problems that a property presents to you in marketing and negotiating.
Take digital photographs as you move through the property as this will help you remember the conditions and configurations of the improvements.
Services and amenities should be documented as tenants or buyers to the property will want to know those details.
As a general rule, you should not ‘price’ a property until you have had time to consider the property detail, reviewed the competing listings, and looked at comparable sales or rentals. If you do this effectively it will help make the listing of the property more relevant to the market and the current levels of enquiry.