In today’s commercial property market, the tenants in your local area will tell you a lot if you ask the right questions. For that very reason you should merge local tenants and businesses into your prospecting activities.
Any local building with multiple tenants should be merged into your call canvassing program. Providing the owner of the building is not a client of your agency through some other business relationship, there is great advantage to be had by calling down all the tenants on a regular basis.
You can ask the business owners and managers questions such as:
- Do they own the property? Property ownership may be an opportunity for a sale and lease back at some stage in the future.
- Do they lease the property? If that is the case they will have lease change over issues and lease expiry dates coming up. Most tenants have no idea about the availability of leased premises in the local area or the current market rentals.
- When will their lease expire? If you know this date you can provide market information to them in the year leading up to the lease expiry. They may be prime tenants for relocating.
- Do they have local storage needs? Existing businesses can sometimes be under some pressure to expand storage or relocate staff into nearby local properties. Ask the questions to see what pressures of occupancy may exist.
- What type of business are they? This will have bearing on the type of property and the improvements required in leased occupation.
- Some businesses have a significant lead time to relocate given the way in which they operate and the plant and equipment that they may use in that business process.
- What labour force requirements do they have? The location of the business should be convenient for labour sourcing and access.
- Some businesses need to be near public transport or have a significant onsite car park for staff and customers as part of business operations. Find out what the business requires in case a special property in the local area could come onto the market one day.
- Ask the business owner about the landlord of the property (if they are a tenant). If you can identify the landlord, you can approach them at a later time regards leasing and property requirements.
In addition to all of the above, the tenants know a lot more about the local area than you do, and the right questions about other businesses in the street may very well turn up a property opportunity.
The best way to gather this information is to call by local businesses on a daily basis. It takes time, but if you do between 5 and 10 a day, you will get valuable leads to work on.