Finding & Vetting the Right Commercial Real Estate Agent

Published: 01-12-23    Category: Marketing

Specializes in providing actionable insights into the commercial real estate space for investors, brokers, lessors, and lessees. He covers quarterly market data reports, investment strategies, how-to guides, and top-down perspectives on market movements.

Finding & Vetting a CRE Agent

So you’re ready to start your search for commercial property or sell your first holding. The question is: How exactly do you go about doing that?

The last thing you want to do is lock yourself into a bad deal or execute a sale that’s ultimately unfavorable to you. Commercial real estate can be a minefield that can lead to easily preventable disasters if walked alone and without a map.

How exactly do you navigate that minefield? With the help of a local market expert; that is, a commercial real estate agent.

When you’re looking for an agent, consider the agent’s experience, negotiation skills, knowledge of the local market, and ability to work with you to find the best deal.

Additionally, you should make sure you have a clear understanding of their fees and commission structure.

Let’s take a closer look at how to vet and find the right agent.

Why Work With a Commercial Real Estate Agent?

Finding & Vetting the Right Commercial Real Estate Agent

The right agent can turn your property search or sale from a nightmare into a miracle, helping you find the perfect office space for your business, find the perfect seller for you, or ensure that you get the best deal possible on rent and lease agreements.

Because of their credentials, local market intelligence, and experience, they’ll be able to provide you with valuable advice that you’d be hard-pressed to find on your own.

Additionally, commercial real estate agents are experienced in navigating local laws and regulations pertaining to commercial real estate, so they can ensure that all the documents involved in a transaction or lease agreement are properly filled out and filed.

How to Narrow Your Search for the Right Real Estate Agent

When searching for the right real estate agent, taking your time and carefully reviewing each option is important. You should research each agent’s experience, qualifications, and reviews from other clients, and never go with the first agent you come across.

Additionally, you can ask friends or family for any recommendations they may have. You can also search for real estate agents or brokers on various websites hosting listings for commercial properties. Some real estate websites may have tools that let you search for commercial real estate agents based on your needs.

Once you have narrowed down your list of potential agents, contact each one and ask questions about:

  • Their experience with past real estate transactions;
  • Their experience with your type of property (retail, industrial, multifamily, etc.);
  • Their selling process;
  • Their marketing strategy;
  • Their fee structure; and
  • Specific questions pertaining to the property type you’re looking to buy, sell, or lease.

Make sure they’re familiar with the area where you plan to purchase, sell, or lease property and that they have the necessary certifications and licenses. For example, commercial real estate agents who work with office buildings downtown will have different skills and experience than those who work with industrial properties by the highway.

Lastly, consider factors such as communication style, availability, and fees when making your final decision.

How to Vet a Commercial Real Estate Agent

Finding & Vetting the Right Commercial Real Estate Agent

Once you’ve found a few agents that interest you, it’s time to begin the vetting process. Taking the time to vet an agent the right way will help you ensure you’re working with someone who is truly qualified to help you.

First, research the agent’s credentials to ensure they have the necessary certifications and qualifications for the task at hand. Check their references and reviews to get an understanding of their past performance. Ask for information on their previous deals, as well as any long-term strategies they may have in place.

Finally, set up an in-person meeting with the agent to discuss your needs and expectations so you can make an informed decision. By taking these steps, you can make sure that you are partnering with an experienced professional who will be able to assist with your commercial real estate needs.

Commercial Real Estate Agent Red Flags

Throughout your search, watch out for red flags. Some of the most common red flags include an agent who has lost their license or has been the subject of recurring negative press and negative reviews.

Research and understand exactly what happened before making your decision. It’s worth it to take the time to research and ensure that the agent you choose is honest and trustworthy, so taking the time to investigate any potential red flags is essential.

How to Hire the Right Commercial Real Estate Agent

Finding & Vetting the Right Commercial Real Estate Agent

You’ve found and vetted several real estate agents, narrowing your search further. The next step is to commit.

You should look for an agent or broker who is part of a larger brokerage firm, as they will be able to provide access to a dedicated team of professionals.

Furthermore, it’s important to find someone familiar with the type of property you are interested in, whether it’s office space or retail space, and who is well-versed in industry trends and types of businesses.

Additionally, if you are looking at leasing new space, then you may want to consider working with one of the larger real estate firms since they may have more resources available than smaller agencies.

Finally, if you are a landlord looking for a tenant, make sure that the agent knows how best to market your property type and lease terms to maximize your return on investment.

Partnering with the right agent is essential for the success of your real estate endeavors and for peace of mind in knowing that you’re making a safe and profitable investment.

Do your research, stay diligent, and happy investing.

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