Every year the commercial real estate market will change in many ways. Reading the signs of change is really important if you are a real estate agent or broker. You can then adjust your efforts and priorities to capture more enquiry and listing opportunity.
Most of the business that you create will be local within your town or city, and for that reason market your skills locally within your specialist property type. Occasionally you will get new business from outside of your ‘zone’ but that is the exception and not the ‘norm’.
If you look at the skills of a top agent today, seven factors stand out as critical to progress at an individual level. Here they are:
- Knowledge – With changes to property prices, rents, and legislation, there are plenty of things to get to know. A sale or lease deal today will be different in 3 months’ time and you need to know why. Keep ahead of the trends of the market and improve your local market knowledge at every opportunity. Many of your peers and competitors should be on ‘talking terms’ with you; it is productive if you share industry trends and observations on prices, rents, and enquiry.
- Prospecting – Connecting with new clients and prospects is at the ‘top of the tree’ when it comes to getting results. Whilst you may know a lot of people in the market today, you can never know too many. Make it a daily process to connect with more people. Researching logically property by property and street by street will get you there.
- Listing – Listing skills are something of a speciality, and you should ask for exclusivity with your listings; open listings are a waste of time and will not contribute to market share. The property market is very competitive and other agents are likely to be chasing the same listing as you are. Ask yourself this question, ‘Why should the client listen to you and take your recommendations of marketing and listing?’ If you don’t have an answer for this then you are likely to not have any point of difference.
- Marketing – We have lots of marketing tools to use. Some are better than others when it comes to certain property types; the choices and the recommendations that you make regards marketing will have relevance to the outcomes achieved. Make it a golden rule to chase exclusive listings with vendor paid marketing funds.
- Negotiation – If you take the average property transaction in sales or leasing, there are many stages of negotiation. They are all different and ideally you should be winning more than 50% of your negotiations. To do that you will need to practice your efforts.
- Documentation – Any agreement between parties will need to go to the next stage of action. That will generally be a ‘heads of agreement’ or a formal contract or lease (as the case may be). You can never know too much about the documentation side of things as it will help you work through complex situations of negotiation. When in doubt, ask plenty of questions with the people that understand how to document a particular sale or lease.
- Database – Every top agent has a high quality database that they have personally nurtured and built with professional contact. There are no shortcuts here with your CRM processes. You cannot delegate your database activities to anyone else (nor should you want to)
Preparation is a big part of the commercial real estate business. All of these 7 factors require preparation and process.