investment property

How to Set and Understand Key Buying Criteria in Commercial Property

Inbound inquiry is a good thing to have and to work with as you as a local broker or agent market your commercial property listings.  Inquiry gives you momentum, and the source of your enquiry will be either your prospecting, listing marketing, and or your database interaction.  Get involved in your property market to boost inquiry.


If you are struggling with quality property inquiry now, then one of those 3 factors mentioned will very likely be weakness in your personal marketing plan.  Have a serious look at what you are doing and how things are developing.


Control the Inquiry


So, let’s assume that you are creating reasonable levels of inbound inquiry now.  The way that you handle that inquiry will be critical to the results that you are seeking to achieve in inspections, negotiations, and commissions.   Some buyers will be reluctant to tell you everything, so directed questions are needed.


Here are some factors of buying criteria to explore with the people that contact you on listings for sale:


  1. Location – Given that your town or city will have specific precincts of commercial property, drill down into the facts of each of the precincts that you specialize in, so you can find out what will suit the buyer as they research the available listings. Remember that they may not understand the full facts of the location or precinct.
  2. Budget – Question the person about the money they can actually spend. They will have limits.  That limit will be impacted by market pressures and funding availability.  Have they researched and sourced their funds?  Are they a cash buyer?  If they are using bank finance, can they satisfy the typical ‘loan value ratio’?
  3. Property type(s) – Some property types will be more suitable than others for the buyer and what they are seeking to do. Show them some samples of recent transactions, and use some case studies to prove your facts and observations.
  4. Improvements, Size, and Layout – When you consider particular properties, the variables will be in the improvements and the configuration of the property. With some buyers, and particularly the ones that are seeking to owner occupy, a visit to their current property location will help you understand what they are moving from and how they use their current property.
  5. Investment/Occupation – The key question here will hinge on whether the person is an investor or not; what is their reason for purchase? If they are to be investing then there are many other issues to explore such as tenant mix, income cash flow, lease documentation, asset quality, and investment stability.  A good awareness of current market circumstances will help you with covering off on those issues.
  6. What have they looked at already? – This is a simple question that is so important at the beginning of things when you are processing the inquiry. The person is quite likely to be inspecting with and speaking with a few other local property brokers.  When you know that fact, you can adjust what you say and what properties you inspect.


In working with the many different buyers today and satisfying their property needs, the simple questions are usually the important ones, so get to the answers in each case.  Drill down into the facts with the buyer, what they are saying, thinking, and doing.  Soon you will see how you can move them to an inspection and potential property negotiation.

(N.B. these ideas are also sent out to regularly to our friends in Commercial Real Estate Online Snapshot to help amplify brokerage results…. Get your access here)

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