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A Valuable Listing Checklist Template for Commercial Real Estate Brokers

When you pitch for a commercial property listing, your preparation and information gathering process prior to the event will be critical to the conversion of the new business.  Through preparation you can cover off on all of the right issues that could have an impact on the marketing, inspections, and negotiations relating to the listing.  You can confidently show the client that you really do have full control of the matter and their property challenge.  Get more tips on listing procedures in our e-course right here.


It is a known fact that many property clients avoid telling the entire story about their listing and its history.  Through directed conversations we can get to a number of questions and issues that we can look into further.


Get to the Facts


So why won’t clients share all the information about the property?  Perhaps there are some weaknesses in the property; that could be in occupancy, ownership, tenant mix, cash flow, lease documentation, or the buildings and improvements.  So these facts are important for where you are heading as a broker or agent.  Know the property well before you talk about price, rent, and marketing.  Get to the right issues and all the right facts as part of preparing for the listing.


I like the checklist approach to listing.  In that way you can deliberately show the client that you are a professional agent in all the right ways.  Here are some of the main issues to help you with this client interview and listing process.   Build your template for listing property from this:


  1. Title details – Get a copy of the title for the property and look for rights, relationships, registered documents, and property descriptions. Everything has to check out and make sense before you list the property.  Question any easements, rights of way, and unusual registered instruments on the title.  When in doubt on any of the title facts, get a property solicitor to comment.   Ask the owner to tell you what certain things on the title are that may seem a bit unusual to ownership and property use.
  2. Ownership records – Get clarity on just who owns the property. In the case of a company or property trust, make sure you are talking to the person or the people that may have the right to transact the property.
  3. Property improvement details and facts – Plans, photographs, occupancy certificates, leases, and income budgets are a few of the important things to inspect as part of undertaking the listing. With older properties, take particular care to ensure that the property is safe and well maintained in accordance with occupancy and safety codes.  Check out the local building zoning, and ask about any statutory orders that may impact the ownership and or occupancy of the property.  When in any doubt, go to the local council building inspection office and see what they can tell you.
  4. SWOT – Do you own SWOT analysis of the asset to see where some things may require special consideration in the marketing, presentation, inspection, or negotiation phases of the listing and marketing process. The factors of the SWOT are worth reviewing and discussing where some items are likely to impact the marketing or inspection processes.
  5. Property history – Delve into the history of the asset and how it has been occupied or used over the years. What has happened in the asset over the years?  Who has occupied and could that be of interest to the local newspapers or media outlets?  The history of property will be useful as you capture property inquiries and encourage inspections.  You can write an article about the property and the owner, if the property has some local interest or profile.  Release the article online through blogs, websites, and media releases.
  6. Local area information – Understand the streets, zoning, and nearby buildings. Many factors of property use and ownership in the local area will be relevant to your marketing campaign.   The same can be said for competing properties and prices or rents.  Look at the properties that are on the market today and those that have already sold or leased.  The actual prices or rents will give you valuable market intelligence that you can use in your listing and marketing activities.
  7. Supply and demand facts – Know the properties that are coming through the project and construction phase in the local area. They will influence prices and rents.  Is the local property market strong enough to absorb the supply?
  8. Time on market statistics – Some things take longer than others to sell or lease. When you check out the local properties, you will form an opinion of why that is the case and that information can help you with your marketing efforts.
  9. Marketing methods – Choose the marketing methods that work for the location and property type. Make every exclusive listing a special marketing process. To promote a property comprehensively and effectively today, a marketing campaign should be carefully crafted for both online and off-line promotion. Client contributions to marketing should be considered and promoted in your listing process. Ask for the marketing money as part of the property listing. In commercial real estate sales and leasing, it is quite normal to get marketing funds from the client as part of the listing process.
  10. Client requirements – Every client will have certain targets and challenges as part of the property lease or sale as the case may be. Their motivations and requirements may not be aligned to current market conditions, and you are the best person to probe into those issues. Get to know what the client thinks about their property as part of the sale or lease, and understand what they know about the local property market and recent completed transactions. That information will be critical when it comes to the negotiation of a sale or lease at a later stage. Condition and prepare the client for the prevailing market conditions as they exist today and predictably for the future.


So these are some of the main things that apply to listing a commercial property today as part of a sale or leasing process. You can add to the list based on local market conditions, the property type, and the elements of the property itself.  Get control of the listing process to boost your conversions.


In creating a checklist approach to listing a property successfully, it makes it easier to achieve a timely result in either sales or leasing for the client. Ultimately that timely result is what the client requires, and they are looking for the best agent or broker to provide that solution. Build that strategy into your client presentation and conversations.  Improve your professional services and your listing strategies through the checklist approach.

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