Commercial Real Estate Listings – For Sale By Owners

In any commercial real estate market you will always have a selection of listings that are being marketed by the owners of each property directly.  Those owners put a signboard on the property, and run a few adverts in the paper to attract enquiry.

Rarely will these owners achieve a quick result; many property buyers and tenants are reluctant to deal direct with the property owner due to the perceived lack of ‘arm’s length’ impartiality.  Most tenants and property buyers would prefer to work with an agent as part of the property inspection and negotiation process.

When you contact those owners to see if you can help them, they will usually tell you to bring them some qualified people to view the property, and then you can add your commission on to the asking price.  In other words they control the momentum and the price.

The fact of the matter is that these owners usually have to go through a degree of frustration and little property enquiry before they are suitable to work with.  They can be a great waste of time unless they adjust their prices and marketing efforts to the property market today. Tell them how the market really is and see if they are willing to match it.

Don’t get me wrong here, I am not saying that you should avoid these property owners; I am just saying that they should be treated with some selective communication.  They can be a great time waster unless they come to the terms of the current property market when it comes to price and negotiations.

Here are some ideas for helping you work with these property owners.

  1. Always get a listing appointment signed before you take any tenant or buyer to the property.
  2. Always get a firm price from the property owner so you know exactly what you can quote to your introduced buyer or tenant.
  3. Get the property owner to take down their sales or leasing sign off the property; it is only going to frustrate the way the buyer or tenant negotiates.
  4. When offers and counter offers are made, get them in writing so you have something to work with.
  5. Show the client the competing properties that they are working against.  Give them an idea of rental, price, marketing, and time on market in each case.
  6. If this owner is to use you and or your agency to market their property, ask for an exclusive listing for a period of time.  This will prevent the client going out and doing some deal around you.

I go back to the point that these owners are a valuable segment of the market for listings and commissions; you just need to control them and select the listing on your terms and not theirs.

If you want some more tips for commercial real estate agents you can get them right here in our Newsletter.

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