Real estate transactions of all sorts are complicated and highly stressful. Commercial real estate ups the ante when it comes to buying and selling, even leasing a property. Don’t leave your commercial real estate transaction up to any agent. These questions will show you how to choose a great commercial agent in Inland Empire to protect your interests.
What’s Your Background?
This may seem like a standard question but take the time to really listen and ask follow up questions. You need to know how long the commercial agent has been in the business, not just in real estate but also in commercial real estate. If this is a newer agent, find out who their broker is and what mentorship this person is getting. Just because someone is young or new doesn’t mean they aren’t capable or don’t have the resources to do a great job for you.
Listen for confidence in the answers. A great commercial agent isn’t afraid to admit he doesn’t know something because he knows he has resources to answer any question and overcome any obstacle. Learn what the agent specializes in within commercial real estate as well. Some agents are buyer’s agents while others better represent sellers. Some are exclusively leasing agents. You want an agent that fits your needs.
May I Have References?
Great agents have happy clients. You can get a lot of information from online resources for residential real estate agents but this isn’t as easily obtained for commercial agents. This is why you need to ask for references from past clients. Of course, the agent will give you a list of past clients that absolutely love them so understand that this is a bit skewed. But ask the reference about the transaction, how the agent deals with problems and the overall character of the agent.
When you ask specific questions, you often get more than just the obligatory, “we loved working with him,” answer. Prepare your questions like you would prepare for an interview. Respect the person’s time but don’t hesitate to press for real answers. IF someone hesitates, this is where reading between the lines is your signal to questions the agent’s fit for you.
What Are the Most Common Challenges in Escrow?
Real estate transactions rarely go without something creating a problem or obstacle in escrow. Ask the agent what types of challenges he sees and how he has overcome those issues. This may be title issues, inspection problems or even city permitting restrictions.
Great agents have seen a lot and aren’t afraid of obstacles. In fact, great agents have developed a contact list of resources to get answers and address issues quickly and effectively. The agent gets paid a lot of money to complete transactions; you want one that will make your life easier in the process. Great agents are not afraid to earn that commission.
What is Your Preferred Escrow Company?
Learn who the agent uses for escrow and do some research on the escrow company. This often gives you insight into the level of professionalism the agent possesses. Let the agent know you will be calling the escrow company to get a professional reference from them. An agent confident in his ability won’t blink an eye when asked to provide this information. This is business and a great agent knows you need confidence in his abilities. There is no better reference than escrow to define his professional character and ability to handle a commercial escrow transaction.