In commercial real estate today, it is the case that many corporate tenants are looking for help when it comes to leasing decisions and property re-locations. That is where you can offer the specialised service as a tenants advocate; you can help the tenant find the right property in your town or city and negotiate with other agents and landlords. For that service you should charge a reasonable commission, and the tenant should pay that commission.
If this sounds attractive to you, let’s set one important fact on the table. The best tenants to provide this tenant advocacy service are the corporate tenants operating local or national businesses. They will quite likely pay well for a professional leasing service that saves them money or makes the relocation to another property easier. Conversely the smaller tenants (family businesses) in the market may like the help to relocate, but rarely will they want to pay for the service. Choose your tenants well to protect your income opportunities.
So here are some valuable tips to help you grow a market share as a ‘tenants advocate’:
- Know the market rents – To work professionally and efficiently in the leasing market today it is important to understand the levels and strategies behind current market rents. That will include gross rent, net rent, incentives, and rent reviews.
- Negotiation skills – Invariably you will be negotiating with other agents, but you will be doing so on behalf of your tenant. Some of those other agents will have advanced property knowledge, negotiation, and leasing skills; you will need to match those factors. Practice will help you with closing more leasing deals.
- Franchise businesses – It is a fact that many local franchise groups need help when it comes to finding premises to trade from. The ‘food’ type franchise groups are a case in point, where they may want to open a new outlet on a main road or in a shopping centre. Make it a priority to contact all the local and national franchise groups to see what they require when it comes to property leasing. As part of that process, you will need to understand specific facts that the franchise business requires satisfied with fitout, improvements, access, security, design, marketing, and lease documentation.
- Fitout design alternatives – Keep in contact with local architects and engineers. They will be valuable resources when it comes to fitout design and the alternatives available in leasing a property to your tenant client. Understand the modern trends that apply to office layouts, fitout construction processes, and staff efficiencies in property layout. Every square meter or square foot leased will cost your client money and will impact the daily function and viability of a business. Fitout design can offer great savings in occupancy costs, business function, or staff convenience and efficiencies.
- Occupancy costs – From the previous point mentioned, fitout design and the size of the area leased impacts occupancy costs; those occupancy costs will be rent, outgoings, energy, water, gas, air conditioning, and other consumables. Take the time to understand your clients’ needs when it comes to budgeting occupancy costs.
- Energy and Environmentally friendly buildings – Many corporate tenants are looking for buildings that offer the best levels of technology and controls with energy use and the environment. It is the case that the modern buildings that are well designed for occupancy and energy efficiency are attracting tenants away from older buildings. Understand the standards that apply to energy, gas, and water supply in commercial premises today. Focus your tenant advocacy services around energy and occupancy improvements for your client.
So you can be a very successful tenant’s advocate offering specialised leasing services. Focus your marketing efforts on the better corporate tenants and the higher quality buildings.