“Eeny, Meeny, Miny, Moe – Take the Guesswork Out of Choosing a Listing Agent”
Commercial property owners can be tempted to advertise their own properties for sale or lease. What they fail to realize is that listing a commercial property is easy, unless you are doing it right.
Why is it that some agents are more effective at selling commercial property than others, if they are all sticking the same size signs in the ground? The answer is simple. Listing a commercial property is not a one step process. A good listing agent has an established marketing plan that goes beyond installing a “for sale” sign on the property.
There are many factors to consider when selecting the best listing agent for your property. In this first installment of this blog series we will discuss two factors to consider when selecting a listing agent.
Ask your prospective listing agent about their photography standards. Some firms hire professional photographers for each listing. Others allow agents to make their own decisions about listing photos, which could result in the promotional images being low quality cellphone pics. Find out what your listing agent plans to do for the photos of your listing.
If you are selling a piece of land, professional photography may not be as important as a satellite image showing the parcel outline. However, some land parcels are valuable because of location, and aerial photography would be important to the marketing. In this situation, consider asking your listing agent if they would hire a drone photographer for the listing.
Find out how listing brochures are made and where they will be distributed. Brochures contain the most important information about a listing. They are integral to not only gaining prospect attention, but quickly providing prospects with listing details, before they move on to other listings.
- Are the listing brochures provided by this brokerage firm one-size-fits-all templates created by the firm’s marketing director or are they multiple page brochures that can easily be updated by the listing agent as needed?
- Will the brochures only be printed and handed out to prospects who tour the property or will they be emailed in digital form to a database of prospects to generate interest?
- Will interested prospects need to request for a brochure to be sent to them or can they access a dedicated listing website that is available 24/7?
Remember that commission is the incentive an agent has for selling or leasing a property. It is in the agent’s best interest to have a higher commission rate for a bigger payday, when the property is sold. Obviously, property owners would rather have low commission rates in order to keep a larger profit from the sale. Here are a few tips to resolve this conflict.
First, realize that commission is negotiable. Don’t just call around getting commission rate quotes and choose the lowest rate. Once you have selected your agent based on their marketing techniques, you may be able to get a lower commission rate just by asking. However, keep in mind that you get what you pay for. If you are able to negotiate a low commission rate, you could be getting less attention on your listing. An honest agent will tell you if the commission you are wanting is below a level that makes marketing the listing worth their time. In addition, the commission will be split with the agent who brings the buyer or tenant. This means that a higher commission will make your listing more attractive to other agents and get more traffic to your listing. More traffic can lead to more offers and a higher ultimate sale price.
An alternative to negotiating down on the commission is to ask the agent if his brokerage firm has a predetermined commission schedule. Commission schedules are suggested commission rates based on the sale price of a listing. They are often created to be in-line with typical commission rates in the local marketplace. By comparing your commission rate to that of the commission schedule, you can make sure you are getting a rate that is fair to all involved.
Not all listing agents are created equal. Choosing the right listing agent for your property can be the difference in selling months sooner and for thousands of dollars more. When selecting an agent to list your commercial property, it is important to know what a listing agent can do to make your property sell faster and for a higher price.
Please stay tuned for my next blog in this series.
About Stephanie Gilbert – Stephanie has been working in commercial real estate since 2003. Although she has done a variety of deals, her focus and passion, when it comes to commercial real estate, is leasing and selling office space, primarily in the Pensacola, Florida area. If you would like to contact her, you can call her at 850-610-8339, or email her at [email protected] You can follow her on Twitter at @.