Swimming with Sharks, Traits of a Great Real Estate Agent Part I
NYC is the home to the most saviest population when it comes to Real Estate. You will never see a city population more in tuned to their own real estate market. Owners of Commercial Real Estate are notoriously famous for being challenging to deal with
To help you navigate through these treacherous waters to lease or purchase commercial real estate, a good broker can be a guide to help you accomplish your goals. In this series I discuss how to identify the traits of a great broker.
So you are looking to lease a warehouse in Williamsburg for manufacturing hoola hoops, you are looking for a retail space to open a underground burlesque, or you are looking to purchase a commercial loft building to create an “Oragami Collective”. What ever kind of business you are in, you are probably looking to work with an agent. But these agents appear to have the same bland corporate portrait, drab website, and bland real estate signs. How do you tell these sharks apart? How do you find a good shark to trust and work with? You cannot tell from their suit, their car, or fancy business cards. There are distinct traits to look for, and once you know them, your battle through the real estate jungle got easier.
1. DO NOT, I REPEAT DO NOT, USE A RESIDENTIAL AGENT to find commercial property. Using a residential agent to help you find a commercial property is like bringing a plastic yo-yo to a knife fight. The overall knowledge gap between a residential and commercial agent is wide. Residential Agents are good on finding you a home or a apartment to live in. When you speak to them, they will understand very little about what you are trying to do and will waste your time.
2. This is the most important trait for a great agent. A good commercial real estate agent doesn’t aim to just to do a deal. His/Her aim should be to build relationships. This important trait should be apparent in every interaction you have with this agent. This agent will allign his goals according to your goals, even if it means missing out on a quick deal, because he/she knows that a long term relationship with you will benefit in the long run.
Another important point about an agent who looks to build great relationships, is his ability to find properties for you other average agents can’t.
If you look for commercial properties online, you find only a small fraction of whats out available on the market. Commercial Real Estate industry is largely exists offline. Great relationships lead to frequent communication between agents and owners, which therefore leads to have the scoop of up and coming properties.
3. A good agent will ask you many questions during your first interaction. Many buyers/tenants can get put off talking to an agent on the phone. Trying to communicate with an agent through email is a big mistake. Call them. Let them ask you questions about your business, your budget, your property requirements, your desired location. This agent can open up a whole new world of options open to you. He will narrow down properties for you to look at and will save you time not seeing properties that won’t work.
If your first conversation with the agent is short, he will probably be useless to you.
4. A great agent will show you every property that can possibly work for you. If nothing works, he will keep in touch and continuing searching for you until you find what you are looking for, no matter how long it takes.
5. The first time you call this agent and leave a message. He will call you back in 24 hours, no matter how busy he is. Even if he is going through personal issues or on vacation, he will still make arrangements to have another agent cover for him. If he calls you weeks afterward your first call, he is not managing his time well, and he won’t manage your time well.
End of Part 1 of traits of a good traits of a Commercial Agent. Part II will continue my list of great traits.
If you are currently looking for space in the 5 boroughs you can always call me for advice, call Jon Brooks, agent at 5CRE 212-366-0407, email me at email@example.com..
Disclaimer: Not all information above may be accurate. Please before you use any advise in this post or any other post in this blog, consult with a real estate professional and/or attorney.