Five Questions to Ask
Any qualified agent should have no problem answering these questions fully. If that seems to pose an issue, heed it for the red flag it likely is.
1. What kind of real estate do you practice?
This is a soft ball that will help you pinpoint someone who specializes in the type of real estate you’ll be dealing in, with the caveat that your market is big enough for specialists. A general agent who does a bit of this and some of that may work well in a small market, but midsize and up – keep looking.
2. How long have you been in industrial real estate?
This is the kind of question that tends to trigger narratives, which hopefully expose a thorough level of experience and expertise. If you get a two or three-word answer, with no offer to elaborate, you might want to wonder why.
3. How many transactions have you handled recently?
This is another opportunity for an agent to share specific and recent projects that have been successfully completed. Ideally, you’ll also be be given reference information so that you can get additional insight and feedback on the agent’s performance.
4. What’s happening in the local market these days?
If the answer to this is a lot of generalities about a hot market or strong rents, be wary. An experienced agent will have quick access to data so that he can show you specific numbers, trending activity, and other relevant details. Without data, you are in a compromised negotiation position – and you do not want that scenario.
5. What are common mistakes people make when they look for industrial property?
I’ve heard this question just once in all my years of helping businesses relocate or expand into Nevada. And yet, I still believe it’s the most insightful. The answer to this question should help you understand the scope and range of an agent’s experience in the industry.
There’s another thing you can do to quickly shed light on how plugged in someone is to the local market. Before the interview, do a bit of market vacancy research – you can download our most recent Market Advisor for specific information – to get an idea of recent high-profile transactions. Then ask the agent to tell you about recent local activity.
The answers to these questions will give you an idea of an agent’s ability to successfully handle your transaction and avoid issues that have yet to occur to you. If you have more questions about how to find the right agent for your transaction, we are happy to assist you. Contact us today.