Then and Now
In decades past, buyers and tenants looking for commercial and industrial real estate needed to weigh the value of hiring a local real estate brokerage versus hiring a local branch of a national franchise firm. At one time, extensive databases, networking tools and high-tech resources may have only been accessible to the larger firms. But today, the playing field has been leveled – almost anyone who has an interest can access market information instantly.
We are approaching the year 2020, and the way we do business continues to change. As a new generation of entrepreneurs emerges, the commercial and industrial real estate industry will evolve, and the clientele will eventually become (gasp) millennial-based.
A Modern Choice
Here are three reasons millennials are best served by the boutique firm.
- My generation is passionate about transparency. When you are searching for a space for your business, ask yourself – who is representing the landlord? While it is technically legal for one agent to represent both parties in a transaction, you should consider if you want to hire an agent who also represents your potential landlord. Be clear – it’s the largest firms that tend to represent the majority of landlords. I want to know that my agent is motivated to work for my interests, and my interests only.
- Millennials have a strong sense of community and are socially conscious. We know that hiring a local firm means that more of our money will be filtered back into our own community, helping to boost the local economy. Just like we want to know where our food comes from (i.e. farm-to-table, locally sourced ingredients), we want to know where our money is going.
- We want a high level of customer service and quality. Because of all the choices available to us, we expect a higher standard of service. A boutique brokerage will likely have a specialized focus and a higher level of quality personalized support.
Leading by Example
For the same reasons I would hire a local brokerage, I decided to join one, as an agent. I started with Miller Industrial Properties in August of this year, and have been soaking up as much local market knowledge as possible from the owner and head honcho, Tom Miller.
As a real estate professional, I would advise any client (millennial or otherwise) to do your research! Spend some time perusing the web for local services and professionals that have a clear pattern of doing business in your region. Professionals who have an established website and business model tend to be more reliable in my book.