Finding a great real estate agent is crucial to your industrial real estate investment strategy. It is important that you feel comfortable enough to ask any sort of question without feeling inferior just because you don’t understand something that may seem basic to the agent. Here are the first two characteristics I look for in an agent:
EXPERIENCE IN THE MARKETPLACE
We have all heard the often repeated lament about real estate agents and car salesmen – i.e., that they only care about their commission! Unfortunately, there are some agents for whom this is true. With the advent of the Internet, some agents sit at their desks hoping that advertising online is enough to sell a property. This is very often the case with residential real estate. I have bought and sold residential properties in four different countries, and I have yet to meet an agent who primarily had my interests at heart, let alone one that wanted to stay in touch for tenant management, or even for property resale.
A good industrial real estate agent wants to build a relationship with you for life. It is therefore in their best interest to explain all the details of the property to you, both positive and negative. If they really know the industrial real estate business, they will have a division within their company that will work to find you a tenant, and will then manage your property for you once your tenant is in place. Having someone you know and trust to take care of tenant management and property resale will save you a lot of work. This is where the ‘set and forget’ part of your investment strategy really works. Knowing that I have asset managers who will keep me informed of everything, from storm damage to the possibility that a tenant is thinking of moving on, gives me peace of mind. I need only think of the investment property when the money comes in each month.
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