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Commercial Real Estate Agents – Record Keeping and Negotiating Tips

Given that commercial real estate is negotiation orientated, the integrity of your records and record-keeping processes is paramount for every deal and every listing in which you have an involvement. 

As you are the agent in your location and may have plenty of active property and client issues at any time, your approach to real estate will be enhanced by developing checklists and file notes.

Capturing Information

These are the rules that you can apply to your documentary processes.

  • Each transaction that is pending should have its own unique file with the records therein kept in chronological order.
  • On the inside of the folder, staple the business cards relevant to the parties within the transaction.
  • On the inside of the folder, glue an information sheet which allows you to pencil in the latest updates of negotiation.
  • Create a standard form which provides for dates and subject title, which can then be used to record detailed notes of any meetings and conversations. These forms will then be separate pieces of paper relating to each discussion which are then recorded on your file chronologically.
  • Create a transaction information sheet which contains all the critical elements of the negotiation and property. You should have one form for sales, and one form for leasing.
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Keeping Good Brokerage Records

Sales Record Keeping

The sales form should include comments relating to:

  • Description of the property involved
  • Details of the properties owner, address and contact details
  • Asking price details
  • A copy of the appointment to act
  • Confirmation of listing marketing arrangements
  • Copy of any advertising approved and implemented
  • Confirmation of special promotional requirements
  • Confirmation of special instructions from the seller in the marketing of the property
  • Details of any inspection arrangements and outcomes
  • Outgoings details and history
  • Rates and taxes details
  • Survey plans and other plans of the property
  • History of the property
  • Building condition report and any inspection records
  • All tenancy and lease details
  • Details of any existing incentives that are active on current leases within the property
  • Insurance details
  • Appraisal details and comparable property analysis
  • Copies of all leases for tenancies
  • Plans of the property and boundaries
  • Title search details
  • Details of any encumbrances, or other matters that impact the property title and property useage
  • Council search details
  • Building construction code compliances
  • Details of property services and amenities
  • Status reports on any outstanding property documentation
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Setting your listing growth plan

Leasing Record Keeping

In commercial real estate leasing, you will be connecting with landlords and tenants in different ways. They each have separate priorities and one of those parties will be your client. The leasing checklist or form you create should include comments and notes relating to:

  • Property involved and address
  • Owner’s name address and telephone number
  • Copy of your appointment to act
  • Copy of your draft lease to be used in the transaction
  • Comments from the landlord regards use of solicitors for lease documentation
  • Details of marketing instructions and arrangements
  • A copy of any advertising approved by the landlord and implemented
  • Prospective tenants contact details
  • Rental details and instructions
  • The rental appraisal details and comparable property details
  • Outgoings details and history
  • Incentives details to be provided in any lease
  • Rates and taxes information
  • Maintenance arrangements
  • Insurance details and liability definitions between the tenant and the landlord (eg plate glass)
  • Size of the tenancy together with surveys and plans
  • Make good requirements of the landlord on the tenant
  • Tenancy condition report
  • Inventory of inclusions and exclusions in any lease situation
  • Details of any inspection arrangements and outcomes
  • Plans of the tenancy space
  • Details of the existing fitout
  • Length of the lease, and the option
  • Special conditions of the lease to be implemented
  • Required rent review status for the term of the lease
  • The landlord improvement details
  • The tenant improvement details
  • Details of property services and amenities
  • Status reports on any outstanding documentation relating to the leasing of the property
  • Never release your files to any other parties without the approval of your manager.
  • Support any critical conversation, instruction, or decision with a written record to back to the person who made it.

The above information can be shaped and expanded subject to the type of property you work with, and the office procedures within your business. Importantly the keeping of real estate transaction records will help protect you should disagreement or the threat of legal action be imminent.

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