Investigations to Make When Inspecting a Commercial Property for Sale or Lease

When you are assessing a commercial property for future sale or lease, look at the property from a tenant or buyer perspective.  When you do that, the strengths and the weaknesses of the property will stand out.  That is exactly what you want when it comes to positioning the property for marketing and inspections.

What’s happening locally?

What are people looking for in your town or city?  At different times of year the property choices change for a lot of people as do the levels of interest.  Understand the seasonal fluctuations of the property market and set your campaigns accordingly.   Also review the levels of business sentiment that apply to the overall business community.  Would you say that the community is thriving or slowing?  Where are the next growth corridors in the business community?

When you understand these things, the property inspections that you undertake move to a whole new level of meaning and viewing.  A clear vision of the property and its position in the overall market will help in negotiations and matching buyers and tenants to property situations.

What do people look at first?

Most prospective buyers and tenants assess a property first and foremost from a visual perspective.  If they can get past that initial assessment they will then look at locational and physical issues for suitability.  As an agent or broker, it is critical that you shape a property ‘visually’ before it is taken to the market.  The vendor will need to solve problems of presentation before the promotional campaign starts.

  • Have you ever come across a property owner that wants to sell or lease their asset but doesn’t want to spend money in the process? In my view, it is questionable whether you would want to take on a property listing on that basis.
  • Why waste your time on a listing that is not ready to be taken to the market?
  • Why also would you spend time on a client that is totally unrealistic?

I will let you answer those questions yourself, and on that basis move on to the inspection strategies of commercial investment property.  Here are some immediate strategies that you can apply to inspecting any property for sale or lease:

  • Overall location – Assess the general location so that you get a ‘feel’ for access, neighboring property owners, proximity, transport, signage, and business activity.
  • Strengths of the listing – At first glance, a few things should stand out as advantages and strengths in property use or ownership. List those things as you see them as they will help you with key words and phrases in your property marketing efforts.
  • Tenant mix – If the property is occupied by tenants currently, it is worthwhile assessing the tenant mix for the strengths and weaknesses that then evolve into the property itself. Some tenants can be a boost for property ownership and occupation; other tenants can put off occupancy and ownership.
  • Title and boundaries – Get to the facts of property ownership and understand just where the boundaries are. Explore any discrepancies in each case.  Ask plenty of questions before you go into any lease or sale marketing campaign.
  • Improvements – The improvements and buildings in the property will have some benefit to a targeted group of tenants or buyers. From your property inspection process you can review the improvements to segment off the correct buyer and tenant profiles.  In that way you will know how you should be promoting the property for sale or lease and when that should be done.

Simple strategies like these will help you get your property listing processes underway.  There are lots of other things to then look into and explore.  The message here is that you should not market a commercial property for sale or lease until you totally understand the offering that you have to work with.

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