When you as a real estate agent lease commercial property today, it is quite important to ensure that you have the right tenant for the property that can successfully trade for the duration of the lease. If you also have other tenants in the property, there will be matters of tenant mix to consider.
Let’s face the facts of today’s property market; there are lots of vacancies to deal with, so any way you can specialise the process and get to the key particulars, the better. Tenants and landlords will not always give you all the facts on first request.
To qualify a tenant for potential lease negotiation on any property there are some standard questions that you can incorporate into a checklist. To do this well you can have a checklist for each property type (office, industrial, and retail), so your questioning and qualification process is quite specific and relevant.
Here are some important facts to get into when you want to qualify a potential tenant to lease your vacant property:
- Who are the tenants that you are talking to and where do they come from? Who is the decision maker to talk to in the leasing process? Make sure that you are talking to the right person.
- Get them to summarise exactly what they are looking for in a property.
- What access do they need to transport routes or ports? Will they need to access main roads with heavy or large vehicles?
- Will they want special on-site areas to use such as ‘hard stand’, car parks or loading facilities? If they do, make sure that you understand how and why.
- Get them to tell you what they must avoid in relocating to another property. They are moving from another property, so something is the catalyst for the move; find out what it is.
- What location is ideal or right for them and why? This will help narrow the inspections that you do.
- How long will they need to occupy the new premises and will they want an option for renewal?
- What size of property will satisfy their needs in relocating or leasing? Break the size up into special areas such as office space, warehouse, foyers, storage, car parks, common areas, and display retail space.
- What improvements in the property are essential versus what are good ideas if available?
- What rent can they afford? What is their rental budget? As part of that process ask about their ability to pay extras like property outgoings and recoverable charges.
- What is the timing of their move to the new property location? It may be that the timing will not suit some of the properties that you can show them.
- How did they come to you and make the property enquiry? Did they see a signboard or did they come to you from some advertising (if so what)?
- Will they have a need to expand or contract at a later stage in lease occupancy?
- What is their main type of business and from that what special needs do they have such as deliveries, storage, car parking, customer or client access, and transport?
- What staff numbers are involved in the function of the business? You will need to know this to ascertain how the property can serve the occupants (toilets, car parking, common areas, etc).
- Are they coming to you from another property? It could be that some relocation pressures apply here with the end of another lease.
So these questions will get your checklist started. When you use focused questions like this you can get to the facts and prepare you efforts in directing them to the right property in the most efficient way.