When you really understand the commercial real estate market and the brokerage activities in your location, you will fully appreciate that you should be talking to lots of local people in a regular and ongoing way. The database that you create from the people that you know and talk to regularly will be your pipeline of new business in so many different ways. (NB – You can get our free commercial real estate course right here)
Whilst some listings will come to you because of the brokerage that you work for, most of the high quality listings will be a direct result of your personal effort and ongoing contact with property owners, investors, and business leaders.
In those 3 categories of people you will find commissions, listings, and a good degree of property pain. So how do you get this important business activity underway? You make lots of cold calls in a regular and ongoing way.
Cold Calling Benefits
The principle and main benefits of cold calling can be best described in this way:
Building you personal profile
Finding new people that need property help locally
Tracking property changes locally
Finding new listings
Keeping up to date with market trends
All of these things fit quite specifically into the business of commercial real estate brokerage. If you are looking to improve your career in commercial real estate, then look to the strategies and skills in cold calling. Learn how to make more professional business calls every day in a relevant and logical way across property and business segments in your town or city.
In this audio program, John Highman talks about the real benefits of cold calling and why you could consider it as an important part of your real estate model.
Learn the real and relevant skills behind making more prospecting calls in a positive way each and every working day.
In commercial real estate leasing, the competition that exists in your property market will very likely be talking to the same very people and businesses that you are. In saying that, the quality of the connection between agents and businesses or landlords can sometimes be of poor quality, so you have something that you can work with and improve.
If you are going to stand out as a top agent in the leasing market, then you have to do the right things with real focus and control; and then you should work on the good quality buildings or locations from a leasing and vacancy perspective.
Stand out as the agent of significance for the location and property type. When you work the better buildings, more inquiry will come your way.
Drill Down into Facts
To get ahead in the leasing market, here are 7 points of focus to drill down into with your landlords and tenants:
Know who you are talking to – Always get to the facts when you are talking to someone new, be that across the telephone, in a meeting, or through a door knocking process in the local area. The people that you talk to will give you the momentum in your leasing business, but understand who they are before you say too much about the property or give out information. If a person is slow to introduce themselves, then you should also be slow to give out the property facts. There is no point in wasting time on someone that is not fully honest and open with you.
What do they need and when? – Get to the core facts of their property situation. What do they want from a leasing perspective and what will be the critical timing? Ask about their critical points of choice or need with any property they may find or want to inspect.
Where are they now? – If they are in business now, seek out the facts of that occupancy. It is also valuable to see their current location and how they use premises as part of a business operation. You can see the interaction between staff, customers, business operations, and layout of the current property.
Exactly what can they afford? – Rents change by location, not just by property type. Tenants don’t fully understand that fact, so a market rent awareness for a new location and property type is valuable. Help them understand net rents, outgoings, and other operational costs such as water, electricity, and gas. Those services will be consumable within the property, and the tenant will have to pay as consumed. How will that happen?
Business requirements for the change – When you ask about their current business, there will be many things to explore in property layout, configuration, improvements, access in and around the premises, and special zones such as showrooms, administration, sales, and storage. See how they are using their current property with these factors in mind.
Staff and customer requirements – How will the balance between staff and customers be accommodated within the building? There will be special zones to consider such as car parking, customer service, customer sales, and showroom access. Remember also the factors of parking that may apply in the precinct and on the street. At certain times of the day there may also be issues with access from busy roads and freeways.
Timing for the change – The timing of property change will be variable and will likely be impacted by individual business activities and seasonal business fluctuations. It takes time to move business into a new building and location. There will be a crossover of time that applies to the relocation into the new property. You may be able to help the tenant in understanding how the new occupancy can commence with rent-free periods and early access being given to the new property and location.
There are some quite specific things that you can look into as part of the leasing services and solutions you provide to tenants today. Ask the right questions and go deeper into the issues that really impact the relocation for the business.
The deeper that you can go into the tenant’s situation will show a degree of professionalism that other agents may struggle with. Be special, real, and relevant when it comes to the commercial property leasing market today. Show that you are the best agent or broker to assist when it comes to business relocation and leasing resolve.
In every town or city there are things that you can find that relate to commercial property sales, leasing, or property management. You can get plenty of leads if you drill down into the location. Meet people and ask questions. A good conversation will take you closer to a property activity.
Having a good database will always help with new business generation. For the new people in the industry, the priority to establish a good database is high. Three to six months of effort will usually get a contact list established; from that point on it is a matter of keeping the data fresh and accurate.
To help my friends in the industry get established and stay on top of the right market trends, this audio will probably help. It talks about who you should know and why that should be done. Enjoy.
When you work in commercial real estate brokerage, the local business community can be a great source of leads and opportunities at a personal level. Use that fact as a point of leverage in getting your brokerage business underway or at the times when you require more clients and listings.
It is a simple fact that local businesses are very close to or aware of the activities of property owners and property investment. Those local businesses will hear about things and see things before you do. They will know about changes and pressures; that is where they can be of help to you. In saying that, you really do need to approach them in the correct way.
So what can you do with this?
Consider your current area and city. Understand where things are changing and what the local business owners think about that. Try these ideas and strategies for starters:
Businesses under pressure – given the changes in the economy in most countries, some business segments are looking to adjust. Property occupation or use can be part of that adjustment. Ask questions locally of all the local business owners and occupiers; read the local newspapers. You will find those businesses thinking about change.
Higher occupancy costs – when the rents go up, some businesses will start to look for other locations and other buildings to occupy. Pay close attention to the levels of occupancy cost, rental, and outgoings as they apply to property occupation locally. Different building types will have different cost averages to watch and work with. That is where specialization can help you move into a market share and find the new business.
Expansion or contraction – when you look at single businesses in particular locations, you will see the physical signs of space and occupancy pressure. Perhaps those businesses with little or no storage capability, or not enough space. When you see the problem, make the call with some direct questions.
Landlord difficulties – some landlords are really challenging for their tenants from an occupation and lease position. Some landlords try to squeeze the maximum rental from the asset without due regard for property performance and presentation. When this becomes a factor of property occupation, then the tenant will soon be thinking about moving.
Property failure or age – older buildings create problems for tenants and customers. That pressure will bring about business frustration and movement. The same can be said when a new property development is evolving in an area. The older properties will start to feel the restraints of redundancy. That’s where you can get involved.
Vacancy factors – you will see precincts where the vacancy factors are rising. The same can be said with particular buildings. Some buildings will always be hard to lease. Some property precincts will become less attractive to business owners and investors. That being said, there are factors of change and redevelopment that will provide brokerage opportunity.
Strengths and weaknesses – when you look into a location you will see certain factors of strength that attract new tenants and occupancy. Those strengths can always feature in your property prospecting activities. Use of the strengths of a location and or property type to put some momentum and activation into your prospecting activities. Watch out for the weaknesses that apply to any zone or property type. The weaknesses in a property zone can give you some leverage, as people move and change out of the area.
So the message here is that you can use the local business community to find the opportunities relating to commercial property investment and brokerage. Ask plenty of questions, capture the information into your database, and keep in regular contact with the right people.
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