Finding new clients to serve in commercial real estate brokerage is one thing. Helping them in a relevant and a productive way is another. Our business and industry is very much centred on ‘personal relationships’ and the needs of investors and business leaders as they strive to get better results in their property use. It directly follows that every client that you work for should be positioned for their unique circumstances.
Where are the new people?
There are plenty of commercial real estate clients out there in the market to serve; you just need to know how to find them and open the doors of opportunity in a permanent way. Make it a priority to talk to new people every day. Create lots of conversations and ask plenty of questions.
So let’s say you have found a prospect that can be a client for you into the future. You then have some ‘homework’ to get into so that you understand the client and their uniqueness in investment and or property ownership. Try some of these topics for starters:
- Investment targets – Some people hold properties for many years. Others like to change and upgrade as the right investments occur. Understand the best time for each and every client to change property and upgrade. Define exactly what they prefer by way of property holding. Don’t let your competitors get close to your clients and take a listing or a purchase away from you.
- Financing exposure – Property ownership revolves around money, rent, finance, and income. The levels of loan value that a client can commit to will have relevance to their overall portfolio holdings.
- Portfolio exposure – When you look at a group of properties for a client, understand the vacancy factors, critical lease dates, the tenant mix, and the market rents. Look for the disparities and the shortcomings. Soon you will see where you can help.
- Lease strategies – The age, improvements, and location of a property will influence tenant occupation and leasing strategies. Determine why any and all of the clients properties attract and retain tenants. From that process you will know what rent and lease strategies can be suitable for the client for the long term.
- Preferred property types and locations – When you assess a client’s situation, you can see what they prefer by way of property type and the precinct of the city where the assets should be located. Clients buy and lease mostly what they know. On that basis most property transactions are local to a segment of the city. Drill down into a property and precinct segment and you will see the clients to serve.
- Upcoming challenges and the bigger picture – Where will the client and their assets be heading in the current property cycle? Rents, renovations, occupancy, and redundancy all have factors of change that can impact ownership. Timing is everything when it comes to helping your clients and prospects solve a property problem.
So you can see that there are some things to do here in commercial real estate brokerage if you want to improve client relations. One good client today can open up into a deal or opportunity in the future; keep in touch with the right people so they remember you at the right time.