Commercial Agents – How to List a Commercial or Retail Property

When listing commercial property today for sale or for lease, it is important that you get all the facts relating to the property and the ownership. Failure to gather all the information can create significant problems later when it comes to negotiating sales and negotiating leases.

The due diligence process that is later applied to the property contract or property lease can easily find discrepancies and errors that can jeopardise the sale or lease. Many a commercial real estate agent has suffered the consequences of misinformation or missing information when working with a property listing.

Always take notes from your discussions with the property owner, ask questions, and always seek third party evidence in writing of any critical items. It is surprising how important this information becomes when difficulties or disputes occur as part of the property marketing and negotiation process.

As another note of importance, the listing of a property by the agent should be formalised with the client legally and correctly. It is surprising how many clients have avoided the payment of commission because they have found a loophole in the listing process. Solicitors working on behalf of clients are well versed in reviewing and investigating the legality of the listing process.

Do not take prospective buyers or tenants to the subject property without a legal listing arrangement or authority being established with the property owner. It is also a wise move to introduce the prospect by name and in writing to the client so that any other agent for the client cannot claim the same prospect for the purposes of obtaining commission or helping the client in avoiding commission.

Here are some important facts to explore as part of the listing process relating to commercial, industrial, or retail property.

  1. First and foremost, the property ownership and the property title detail should be fully investigated and obtained. You need to know that you are dealing with the legally correct and authorised property owner. Get a copy of the property title.
  2. You also need to know exactly where the property is in relation to its boundaries and its constructed improvements. The improvements as constructed on the property should be suitably approved by the local building authority. There should be no outstanding orders or notices that apply to the property or the premises. The occupancy of the tenants within the building should be legally correct.
  3. The property title or the property location could give rise to some encumbrances, rights of way, or other interests on the land. These should always be investigated as they can be frustrations to the marketing, selling, or leasing process. Get copies of the relative documentation and review it before proceeding further.
  4. The property history and the property usage will give you some important information. Ask questions about environmental matters, heritage matters, services and amenities, property operating costs, and tenant mix.
  5. If the property is being taken to the market for sale, you will need copies of the relative lease documentation for all of the tenants within the tenancy mix. All of this documentation is to be reviewed completely and thoroughly to ensure that it is current, enforceable, and not producing any irregularities. Look for leases that are due for a rent review, a lease option, lease expiry, and outgoings reconciliations. Make sure that there are no lease defaults current, and if there are, you will need details of the status of the default and the method of resolve. When in doubt, don’t proceed with the marketing of the property until you understand the impact that the defaulting lease could have on the sale process.
  6. Check out any vacancies as they apply to the property and find out what the property owner is doing about them.
  7. Ask about any current lease negotiations that could impact the sale in timing or price. Buyers for the property can be sensitive to high levels of vacancy.
  8. If the property is to be sold, the net income and the property outgoings will be important to the pricing process and marketing that you adopt. Get all the right detail here.

The listing of commercial property is complex process that can be significantly simplified with checklist documentation that is suitable for the property type.

Commercial Agents – How to Deal With Difficult Landlord Clients

When you work in a commercial or retail real estate agency, it is easy to get frustrated with demanding landlords and difficult property situations. When the property market is under pressure, landlords are seeking greater assistance from the agents that they use (that’s us). Frustration and pressure will arise in many an agency and landlord relationship as the property market goes through change.

Comprehensive Service

In a tough property market, the commercial real estate agents that comprehensively service all property needs are those that are in demand. A well leased and managed property will eventually be sold. Every stage of the client relationship today requires special skills in the agency across leasing, sales, and property management.

Understanding the factors of change in the property market today and how to adjust for them is critical to helping clients with property pressures. The reality of the current property market is that control, strategy, results, and information are really the main factors that the landlord is looking for in moving ahead. The fact is they need our help. We are the best providers of strategic solutions when it comes to property occupancy, returns on investment, and disposal strategies.

Here are some further strategies to use with landlords in this tougher property market.

  1. Keep them up to date with property and lease issues with all tenants in the tenancy mix and the adjacent properties. Work well in advance when it comes to lease documentation and critical dates. Every lease in the subject property should be reviewed for future events and pressures on cash flow.
  2. Market information will change from time to time. Competing properties will also put some pressure on surrounding property sales and property leases. Keeping clients and landlords briefed on the pressures of the competition properties is quite important.
  3. Lease negotiations will occur with sitting tenants and new tenants from time to time. Importantly the negotiation should occur with due regard to the prevailing market conditions. That will include terms of rental, terms of lease, and incentives. The landlord can be positioned for a competitive lease transaction when all elements of the property market are clearly assessed and provided.
  4. The quality of tenants within the tenancy mix, and the threats of vacancy are two highly important issues to be managed and optimized. Both will have impact on the property income profile and tenancy mix. What threats emanate from the property tenant mix now?
  5. Stay in touch with all tenants within the tenancy mix on a regular basis. They are likely to need lease adjustments or changes of occupancy from time to time. If they are good tenants and considered worthwhile for the future of the property, then negotiations should be open and encouraged. It is better to have a stable occupancy than the volatility of increasing vacancies.
  6. Good lease management processes can be incorporated into a business plan for the property. Each year the property can be reviewed in a number of ways with the results being incorporated into the business plan. The plan would include lease reviews, tenancy mix, income profiles, expenditure budgets, and renovation strategies.

Difficult landlords are really just looking for further help and specialized assistance. It is quite likely that they and their property are under some pressures. Improve your services as a specialized commercial agent so that you can help these landlords achieve better levels of property performance in difficult times.

Commercial Agents – Keys to Dominating Market Share and Sales Territory

As a commercial or retail property agent today, you have to dominate your local property market. The levels of enquiries and the types of enquiries coming from each and every listing need to be optimised. Any genuine enquiry should be converted clearly and effectively into the correct property.

So why is all this pressure applying today? The simple fact of the matter is that there are fewer enquiries around for every property that you take to market. The buyers of commercial property are still frustrated by the availability of finance. Any genuine enquiry you receive should be qualified and then converted as quickly as possible into the correct listing.

This also says that any overpriced listings are generally a waste of time unless the owner of the property is somewhat flexible to a price reduction down to the levels of current market activity. It should also be said that any price reduction should occur quickly at the commencement of the campaign as most enquiries only come in within the first three or four weeks of marketing commencement. After that time the property progressively becomes less interesting and attractive to the existing buyers.

So the marketing of commercial property today is more important than ever before. The experienced commercial agent has a high value in that process.

For the agent to dominate the commercial property market today, there are some rules to be followed and implemented. Here are some other main ones:

  1. Every listed property should have a signboard placed on it. Perception of market share is highly important in your local area. The more signboards you can have in your area, the better for your agency in market perception. Signboards still generate a lot of enquiry and have real impact in your local area.
  2. Quality marketing campaigns are the rule and not the exception today. Every exclusively listed property should be taken to the market through a comprehensive and selectively targeted process. This would normally involve the Internet, local businesses, local Property Investors, newspaper advertising, e-mail marketing, and direct contact or direct calls. This type of marketing campaign takes a serious amount of effort. On that basis, the campaign should only apply to exclusive listings over which you have full control for a reasonable amount of time.
  3. A vendor paid marketing campaign is essential. Every exclusive listing should have some form of vendor marketing. To assist you in selling this process to the client, you can have three marketing alternatives for the client to consider. Invariably most clients choose the middle level cost and recommendation.
  4. Keeping in contact with all the business owners locally is just so important today. Business owners and proprietors are the backbone of commercial property activity. Knowing their intentions to move, sell, buy, or rent are some critical parts of your market intelligence gathering.
  5. Identifying, locating, and contacting the owners of quality property in the local area will always be important. This process can take time given that the ownership identity and structure for a property is sometimes conveniently hidden inside a Property Trust or a Company ownership. Nevertheless, you still need to be implementing a process of contact with all the local property owners and investors.

The best agents know their market and constantly tap into it in a variety of ways and then record their findings. The agent with the largest database that is accurately maintained and up to date is usually the agent doing the deals today. They are the agent of choice. Is that you?

What’s The Perfect Color For Your App Icon?

The icon of your app is one of the three defining parameters that affect conversion rates, along with price and name. But unlike these two, it’s the icon that catches the eye first. As we know, black and white is beautiful in photography, but in design it’s full-color icons that catch attention. All the elaborated graphics and the smoothly running features come only later. Therefore, a failed icon is most likely a failed app.

How can one not fail it? There are no absolute guidelines for the issue of choice. The rule is to pay attention to what matters. And with the recent mobile design trends accentuating more on minimalistic shapes than on complex drawings, the importance of color rose even higher.

When it comes to color, there are two possible situations. For established brands it’s absolutely obvious to stick to the brand’s identity that has been before the app. For mobile startups, when it all is just the beginning, the image of the brand, the product, is only being formed, which is the crucial phase. A good brand has a distinct personality and has to awake emotions in users. The very first emotions and impressions are formed with, again, color. So what are the common ‘main’ colors for app icons?

What’s In The Color?

When a brand becomes more or less known, it immediately gains strong color associations, which will last. Facebook, Twitter? Blue. Pinterest, Flipboard? Red. Evernote? Surely green. If your logo, your app icon will have one predominant color, it will carry the message, the mood, the feelings, the essence of your product. Moreover, there must be a balance between the icon standing out and getting noticed on the homescreen, and ‘overdoing’ it to annoying flamboyancy, which is also a common problem of icon design. Drawing a perfect icon is the task of a designer, while the colors will most probably be chosen by you.

Blue is commonly a major favorite among all colors. Plenty of companies use various hues of blue for logos, and as a result, app icons. It’s rather hard not to recognize the distinct hue of Facebook’s blue. The downside is that for smaller brands it’s easy to get lost and blended among the sea of blue icons. Examine your own mobile homescreen; on an average one blue occupies about a quarter of icons.

Yellow is a gorgeous color, if the hue is chosen carefully, so pay special attention to that. Sunshine, positive energy, optimism – this is yellow as we see it. If you use Springpad for notetaking, it definitely catches attention on your homescreen, doesn’t it?

Red is visually intense and energetic, and usually considered second to blue in terms of popularity. It undoubtedly means excitement and catches the eye like no other color. Red would be the least bland color on calls to action.

Purple is a touch of magic and creativity. It doesn’t have the same gender neutrality like other colors, therefore it has never held a great share – which is good actually. If you think of a fashion app, purple will be one of the regular options.

Green has rather strong and definite connotations. First – it’s the color of nature, freshness, life, and peace. Second – naturally money. The business & finance app category is rich with hues of green. Who would actually want to see a disturbing and warning red color in anything concerning finance anyway?

Orange is a very warm and friendly color, a worthy option to avoid the overused blue and red. Orange is positively energetic and not even nearly as aggressive as red. Not overused, which is also a great benefit.

White means cleanness, openness and simplicity. Although you will rather see it as a ‘second color’ in combinations, or nothing more a background to the main element of the icon. After Apple abandoned their rainbow-colored logo, their white/silver shape became even more elegant, embracing simplicity as Apple’s main policy in making products.

Black is a much-favored color in many things we see every day, be it clothing or personal tech; however, this symbol of mystery, power, and challenge is not as popular as blue or red. Nevertheless it draws attention, and the recent Opera Coast’s icon is a good showcase.

Look at other famous brands associated with the color you chose: what do you have in common? Pay attention to specific perception of colors and their meanings among different cultural audiences and in different countries. Personal preferences also play a huge role in forming judgments and opinions. It’s impossible to be liked by everyone, therefore it’s better to focus on the identity of your app. Do a poll among a number of people by giving them at least 10 icon options to choose from.

There has been done lots of psychological research on colors and perfect color combinations, and it’s the art that’s handled by good UX/UI designers. After you define the basics, they will be able to pick the right hues, match the icon with the interface, your brand’s identity, and the smooth user experience provided by your app.