The Teaming of Multiple Business Professionals …Bringing Their Specific Skill Sets to Help Get Deals Done….And Better Represent the Client!
In today’s fast paced and complex business environment Commercial Real Estate Brokers & Consultants need to reach out to other individuals/companies/other service providers who can lend their experience and expertise in helping the CRE Broker to better serve their clients. This is what it should always be about, not trying to be the “Jack of All Trades”. You refer certain service providers as a service to your client and understand that you do this with no expectation of something in return, meaning, not being in the pocket of those you’ve reached out to for help in a specific aspect of a deal. It does not matter if the transaction is a sale or lease.
Many Brokers/Agents are hard pressed to admit they do not know something, either factually about a property or some other aspect specific to a particular deal. For Example, Mortgage Financing, Brokers may know what the current interest rates for the common commercial mortgage are, but do they understand what the lenders are expecting through their underwriting standards? Chances are they don’t. Mortgage lenders are all different and cater to different types of business or sizes of business.
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve reached out to mortgage professionals for help in not only being updated on current mortgage conditions, but letting them know the particulars of my client’s situation and the type of financing my client is trying to obtain. If I refer my client to my trusted mortgage expert, I don’t expect a referral fee from them. For example, I just asked a trusted Banker who specializes in CRE lending about their current rates as a consequence of the Fed’s recent rate increase of 25 Basis Points (bp). I found out their rates went up by 75 bp (.75%) I also found out they are promoting a special for CRE borrowers! I was also sent an update on their lending criteria.
Some would say not asking for a referral fee is foolish and not looking out for Number One…I say so be it, because if the mortgage expert can help find and secure the financing the client needs, what happens? I get to make and close on the deal, and I earn a nice commission. Without the mortgage expert’s help I would have made zero, as the deal would more than likely not have been made. So it is a win-win for all, but most importantly for the Client.
This teaming process can work with accountants, contractors, attorneys, commercial insurance agents, and any others that may be tied to the commercial real estate industry.
For another example, if you have clients who you placed in office buildings…As we have started the New Year, the Tenant will soon be getting their 2016 Building Operating Cost reconciliation bill for overages from the previous year of the lease. We all know these costs never ever go down! Well a good accountant recommendation could be a plus; an accountant that specializes in this type of accounting work, one who can look over the documents the landlord has submitted and can tell if the tenant should ask for an audit of that year’s operating expenses. (Provided there is language in the lease permitting same). This keeps you in touch with your client, (it’s called continued engagement), and it tells your client you care and are looking out for their best interests because you have nothing to gain financially.
You may also gain valuable insight from the accountant as to what is generally going on with your client and perhaps how they are doing financially, or maybe you visit them as a result of this info and see if they are running out of space or vice versa, or are not so happy with their building or landlord.
In addition, if you know of certain other business owners who can provide value added services to your client, why would you not refer them to your trusted business colleagues, especially if they can offer quality services that can save your client money or increase their revenue, even if those services are not directly tied to commercial real estate? What you will find happening are those business colleagues will be more than happy to refer their clients with Commercial Real Estate Needs TO YOU.
By expanding your B to B Network you are actually passively prospecting, as those trusted service providers are in constant contact with their clients. The Key is to make sure you are in regular contact with them so you’ll be in their frontal cortex when a CRE situation arises! And always keep in the front of your mind those trusted partners TOO!
In some circles this would be called a “Symbiotic Relationship”.