Employing the right commercial / industrial agent to represent your interest certainly important step that many business owners and also property owners quickly overlook. Here are 5 things to consider when choosing a real estate broker to represent your needs:
(1) Area of Expertise: Is your requirement specific to a particular product type i. e. commercial, retail, office? Perhaps certain uses like produce, trucking, food, or even call-center to name a few? Is your requirement specific to a market/location? If yes, you have to select a broker that is an expert in these areas that define your space necessity.
(2) Years of Experience: Hopefully all of us learn from our mistakes. Often commercial/industrial real estate transactions are multi-million money deals that have a significant impact on your company. This is not an age issue but an issue based on experience.
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Have your own agent tell you about some of his/her more challenging deals. What made those deals therefore challenging and what was done to overcome those challenges.
(3) Active Real Estate License: We are surprised how many times we get a call from a real estate agent who wants to bring us a deal and I go to confirm their permit and find that it is inactive, suspended or expired. Be careful who you are working with and make sure they are licensed. Each state provides their own regulatory department, for California go to http://www.dre.ca.gov and click in the Real Estate License Look-up icon.
(4) Designations: There are a number of real estate designations available to real estate agents that require continuing education and/or a certain volume of transactions. Some of these consist of Society of Industrial Office Realtors (SIOR), Certified Commercial Investment Member (CCIM) and Certified Property Manager (CPM). Find an agent that cares sufficient to take the time to advance his/her information in their respective field.
(5) Job interview the Agent: Ask your agent to describe the process from beginning to end, from site selection to discussing the terms of a lease/purchase contract, obtaining a certificate of occupancy or even overseeing any improvement work in acquiring a new location. If your agent are not able to describe the process in detail it might be wise to find another agent.