In commercial real estate brokerage, the tenant prospecting process is a good part of the leasing business where you can create plenty of leads and listing ‘churn’. Tenants will tell you so much about their property occupation, the landlord, and the neighbouring properties and businesses. Talk to tenants every day and you will find lots of new business leads and listing potential just waiting to be acted upon.
Local Source of Information
So it is a fact that tenants are very valuable to the commissions that you earn and attract as a broker or agent. They are a huge source of market intelligence and business opportunity. You can track them in your database.
As part of connecting with those tenants you really should have a thorough and complete questioning process that gets to all the key facts of their property occupation and any upcoming change requirements. You can do that directly and effectively. It’s easy when you know what to say and do. You can develop a checklist to the process.
Get to all the tenant facts
Here are some of the main rules to the process:
- WHO ARE THEY?: Understand who they are from the outset of the initial approach or enquiry. Ask plenty of questions so that you know who you’re talking to and how to contact them again in the future. If they will not provide you with the appropriate contact information, then limit what you tell them about the listing and or the property market. Your information is valuable, and they should trust you from the outset of any conversation. A tenant that does not trust you is likely to be concealing a few problems and or issues. They are also likely to be talking to a number of agents in the location. Spend time with the tenants that are open and honest in their conversations and communications.
- WHAT’S UP?: What do they have now? Understand where they are located currently as a business and what they may be looking for in the future. Drill down on the facts of occupation including occupied area, business function, staffing needs, customer profile, lease terms and conditions, and landlord problems. From some very simple questions you can understand where you can take the leasing enquiry and create the conversion that you need.
- TIMING?: When do they need to make the change? There will be some critical time frames that apply to the leasing and property occupation process. Some businesses have a timeline to property change. That timeline can be impacted by annual business cycles, industry trends, and financial cycles.
- SHOW ME THE MONEY!: Understand the budgetary constraints applying to the tenant and within the property type that they are targeting. Some tenants have very little idea about recent rental activity and lease occupancy within a location. They may have high expectations when it comes to changing premises, but little understanding about the rental budgets applying to occupancy in the particular precinct or location. Don’t forget to include in your review the appropriate levels of outgoings that apply to lease occupancy in addition to any rental strategy or budget. The total amount of money will be something that the tenant should fully understand and comprehend before they start looking at properties. Make sure they can afford the property that they are seeking.
- THE IMPORTANT THINGS?: Question the tenant about any specific property needs and conditions. Certain businesses have particular requirements relating to property use, security, communications, staffing, and customer interaction. When you fully understand those specific and special needs, you can match the property more effectively.
- WHERE HAVE THEY BEEN?: Appreciate what property the tenant has looked at previously and currently. It is quite likely that they have been working with or talking to other agents and brokers in your town or city. They will have seen other property listings and developed an opinion of the property market from that process. Depending on what they have seen and when, you will need to adjust your property short list and inspection processes.
From these simple and yet valuable rules, you can take any tenant enquiry directly and effectively. It is easy to do and when successfully undertaken will help you shortlist the required properties in the required locations.