Property Management

Tips for Staying Ahead of the Game in Commercial Property Management

When you manage a commercial property, there are lots of things to watch and track. Failure to do so will see problems develop. The larger the property and the tenant mix that you manage, the greater the number of things to monitor.

Most particularly some of the bigger things that bring issues to you will be:

  • Leases
  • Tenants
  • Landlords
  • Vacancies
  • Property maintenance
  • Rental payments
  • Critical dates
  • Reports
  • Compliances, etc

So the list goes on.   The location of the property and type of property will also have something to do with the factors above.

Many a commercial or retail property manager has been overloaded with properties and or tenants in an attempt to pull in more fees. Quite soon they are watching and acting on so many issues that their day becomes quite busy and confusing. That’s when errors occur.

A Key Question

Every now and then a common question gets raised by an agency principal and it goes something like this:

‘How many tenants or properties can or should a property manager manage?’

Life is not that simple in our industry. The fact of the matter is that some tenants, properties and landlords require intense property management services; others require very little control and just ‘roll along’ with little involvement or trouble.

To structure and grow a commercial property management division correctly in your business, consider the property size, maintenance demands, reporting requirements, tenant mix complexity, and landlord demands.

Stay Ahead of the Game Rules

To stay ahead of the game in commercial property management (or retail shopping center management), the following are some of the major issues to watch carefully and directly:

  1. Tenant meetings – Meet with your tenants regularly and keep records of those meetings. Things will come up or be said that are important to the performance of the property. If you have lots of tenants in an office or industrial property it is critical that you see those tenants frequently to maintain control and stay up to date. If your property is of a retail nature, those meetings should be doubled in frequency, given the volatility and activity of a retail property.
  2. Critical Dates – Your lease dates of importance should be watched and responded to well in advance. They will be rent reviews, options, lease expiries, renovation requirements, arrears payments, rental, outgoings payments and reconciliations, and insurances.
  3. Expansion and Contraction – Some tenants will want to move for various reasons. Whilst they may have a lease for a remaining lease term, connect with your tenants regularly in case you can help them stay in your building in more appropriate premises. When a tenant wants to expand or contract business operations, it is better that you know about it than your competitors looking to find tenants and lease premises elsewhere.
  4. Tenant Mix – When you manage a property with multiple tenants in occupation, the factors of tenant mix can be quite important. They will be very significant in a retail shopping center with specialty and anchor tenants in the mix. A good tenant mix is created from a balance of vacancy management, lease decisions, rental payments, permitted use, and clustering. If you stay ahead of your lease issues you can minimise vacancies, improve rent, and consolidate property performance for the landlord.

So the message here is that you should stay ahead of the game in commercial or retail property management. In that way errors and oversights in the process of property control will be minimised. The job of the property manager will also be less stressful.


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