Friday, July 26, 2019

5 Ways to Close your Commercial Real Estate Deal Faster

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Two weeks ago - in this space - I discussed the reasons your commercial real estate deal is taking so long to close. As promised - today I will discuss ways to close your commercial real estate deal faster. Our discussion two weeks ago focused upon several areas which I will use as a framework for today’s conversation.

Search. Before you search - give some real thought to all of the solutions to your space needs - staying put and re-working your layout, out sourcing a portion of your operation, taking an additional building from your current owner. Also, engage someone who can assist in zeroing in on precisely how much square footage you need.

Negotiations. In a word - Realistic! If you attempt to scalp an owner these days - you’ll be disappointed. Figure out why you are moving. Will you top line revenue increase by a large percentage? Will you be able to give a key employee a private office and thus increase her efficiency? Will a move translate into cost savings? Are you more proximate to labor or suppliers. When considered through this lens - a few cents per square foot or dollars on the purchase price pales.

Due diligence. As a commercial real estate owner - do yourself a huge favor and prepare your building for sale. Please don’t use your precious marketing time unwisely! Order an inspection so you know what repairs are needed. How’s the roof? Does the property have a rich environmental history? Make the necessary repairs. Disclose the others and price accordingly. Gather all of the pertinent documents a buyer will need to review such as - utility bills, leases, operating statements, insurance, plans, and permits. Stage your building as though it was appearing on an episode of Property Brothers. You’ll be grateful!

Financing. Buyers. Get yourself pre-qualified! I would also suggest choosing a lender, having them do a thorough underwriting of your package and know where your source of funds is originating. Many times in today’s competitive market - without a prequalification - your offer will simply be overlooked for one that is complete.

City approvals. Two suggestions here. The first would be to visit the municipality where you are considering relocating. Ask ask them where they would suggest you locate. The second suggestion would be to hire a person who can help you navigate the various city issues you will encounter.

Transition planning. Moving is expensive, disruptive, and inefficient. While considering your area of re-location – also have a moving and storage company give you a bid on the timing and cost of your move. Armed with the specifics - you’re now equipped to venture into the available space market.

Allen C. Buchanan, SIOR is a principal with Lee & Associates Commercial Real Estate Services. He can be reached at 714.564.7104 or

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