If you focus yourself on the role of a ‘buyer’s agent’ in commercial real estate, then you will really need to comprehensively know what your buyers as clients require when it comes to property selection. The buyer’s side of the property market can be quite lucrative for a broker or agent but should be regarded as special in so many ways.
The best buyers to act for are the ‘corporates’ and particularly the larger businesses in your town or city. Those companies are likely to need and appreciate expert property help when it comes to a change in property or location or expand operations.
Professional Services to Property Buyers
Here are some of the important facts to get to understand when it comes to property buyer service and brokerage:
- Timing of the changeover – It takes considerable time for a business to move location. The time frames are shorter when the business is expanding to further premises. When you take into account the lead times of contract negotiation and settlement, there are a few windows of time to be carefully understood and matched.
- What have they got now? – Check out the property that they occupy now to see how things work for them and the relationships between different parts of the business such as warehousing, administration, and deliveries. If the business is more ‘office’ oriented then look at the proximity of departments within the business and how that can work. Some people or groups of people will need to be near others; that will have an impact on fitout design.
- Improvements required – What do they need in a property to make it work for them? There will be staff requirements, car parking, common areas, closed offices, open plan administration, plus many other issues involving property use. How will the buyer need to use the property and in what way? You may require engineering reports relating to property structure and or the plant and equipment. Essentially the improvements should be checked out by and for your buyer client as part of the professional services that you control or provide.
- Size of property – There will be area issues both inside and outside of the property. So you will need to know the allocations of space that the buyer sees as essential for practical property occupation. All areas of the property could be determined by survey if the factors of size are really important to occupation.
- Surrounds – Understand how the surrounds of the property will help the business function. Car parking for both staff and customers will be first on the list of issues to look at and understand. Will there need to be extra space around the property to allow for expansion or property change over time? How will motor vehicles move around the property during the day and night? Will there be issues with trucks, deliveries, and loading to worry about? The current property occupied by the buyer will give a good few hints on those requirements.
- Budget – Most businesses have a budget of one type or another when it comes to purchasing another property. There may also be issues of finance to arrange or get involved with. The cost of available finance and the sourcing of it may be a matter to get involved with early in helping your buyer find properties. If there are any limitations on finance then it is better to know about it early.
- Location – Create a short list of issues that must be addressed from a locational perspective. Proximity to markets and customers will be a priority to most businesses as they seek to buy another property.
- Absolute must haves – Above all else there will likely be a few things that are high priority ‘must haves’ from a business expansion or relocation perspective. Determine what those things are and if they are resolvable in choosing another property.
- Property use – If the business is to use a property in a particular way then zoning allowances and planning approvals may be required. Zoning limitations may require you to source properties in certain locations. Determine if the zoning matters are to impact your property decisions.
So there are plenty of things to understand and work with when it comes to helping local companies as buyers purchase another building or property.
Finding a special property for some businesses can take weeks and sometimes months. That degree of research and resourcing involves a fee and that will be a commission paid by the buyer. They can be your client in sourcing that special property for their next business change or escalation.