Commercial Realtor or not

11 Replies

Is it best to use a commercial realtor for a commercial property or is a residential buyers agent good enough?  I've never purchase commercial and I don't want to miss anything during the process. 

Originally posted by @Georgee Gilbert :

Is it best to use a commercial realtor for a commercial property or is a residential buyers agent good enough?  I've never purchase commercial and I don't want to miss anything during the process. 

 Depends on the agent.  Most residential agents are not familiar with investment properties, let alone commercial.  If you are only looking at 5+ units I would only use a commercial agent.  But if you are looking for 2+ units it would be ok to have 2 different agents.  Commercial is a different ballgame and most properties are not listed, it is relationship based.

Brie Schmidt, Real Estate Agent in Illinois (#471.018287) and Wisconsin (#57846-90)
Originally posted by @Brie Schmidt :
Originally posted by @Georgee Gilbert:

Is it best to use a commercial realtor for a commercial property or is a residential buyers agent good enough?  I've never purchase commercial and I don't want to miss anything during the process. 

 Depends on the agent.  Most residential agents are not familiar with investment properties, let alone commercial.  If you are only looking at 5+ units I would only use a commercial agent.  But if you are looking for 2+ units it would be ok to have 2 different agents.  Commercial is a different ballgame and most properties are not listed, it is relationship based.

Thanks for replying Brie. It's a store front stand alone one unit building.   

Originally posted by @Georgee Gilbert :
Originally posted by @Brie Schmidt:
Originally posted by @Georgee Gilbert:

Is it best to use a commercial realtor for a commercial property or is a residential buyers agent good enough?  I've never purchase commercial and I don't want to miss anything during the process. 

 Depends on the agent.  Most residential agents are not familiar with investment properties, let alone commercial.  If you are only looking at 5+ units I would only use a commercial agent.  But if you are looking for 2+ units it would be ok to have 2 different agents.  Commercial is a different ballgame and most properties are not listed, it is relationship based.

Thanks for replying Brie. It's a store front stand alone one unit building.   

 Commercial agent - no brainer.  Residential agents are generally not trained on mixed use and storefront.  

Brie Schmidt, Real Estate Agent in Illinois (#471.018287) and Wisconsin (#57846-90)
Originally posted by @Brie Schmidt :
Originally posted by @Georgee Gilbert:
Originally posted by @Brie Schmidt:
Originally posted by @Georgee Gilbert:

Is it best to use a commercial realtor for a commercial property or is a residential buyers agent good enough?  I've never purchase commercial and I don't want to miss anything during the process. 

 Depends on the agent.  Most residential agents are not familiar with investment properties, let alone commercial.  If you are only looking at 5+ units I would only use a commercial agent.  But if you are looking for 2+ units it would be ok to have 2 different agents.  Commercial is a different ballgame and most properties are not listed, it is relationship based.

Thanks for replying Brie. It's a store front stand alone one unit building.   

 Commercial agent - no brainer.  Residential agents are generally not trained on mixed use and storefront.  

Ok, so now the question is can you switch agents after they have shown you the property?  And if so how do you do it fairly? I really feel wired about it. The agent that my friend referred me to has me working with another agent. I though the agent that showed me the property was assistanting her but I find out today no she's one of her agents that I've been passed on to. For some reason I don't think she has as much experience and especially not in commercial real estate. I feel bad but I don't want her lack of experience to cost me money and frustration. Please advise. 

@Georgee Gilbert - Is the property listed?  If so the agent that showed you the property would be owed the commission.  So even if you use someone else and close with them, the original agent can sue and get it.  Then depending on your contract, you could owe the second agent.  

I would ask about her experience in this property type, if you do not feel comfortable with the answer then go to the original agent and explain that you do not feel appropriately represented.  

Brie Schmidt, Real Estate Agent in Illinois (#471.018287) and Wisconsin (#57846-90)

Look on LoopNet and find someone who’s active in your area. Then tell the other that you’re somewhat concerned about her experience in this asset class.

If you need to save face with her or your friend and you’re comfortable, tell her she’s welcome to tag along for the experience, but you won’t be compensating her.

Maybe she can work something out with the broker you choose, maybe not, but if she WANTS the commercial experience then she’d be advised to hang with you.

@Georgee Gilbert Have you considered talking to the original agent you were referred to and explaining your situation? You could, potentially, start by talking about your interest in the property and in working with the original agent. Post-that conversation you can, gently, delve into a conversation and ask to change agents as you're more comfortable with someone else. 

As @Brie Schmidt has pointed out, depending on your contract, the agent that showed the property might be owed the commission. Plus, you don't want to stiff someone out of their hard-earned money. 

@Georgee Gilbert   I think you're faced with a little bit of a catch-22.  Of course you'd want to use a commercial broker in a situation like yours.  Looking at a commercial property, a store front, etc.  That said, a lot of them can be a giant pain to just plain get ahold of.  I use a "residential" agent for what I buy but I'm mostly looking at commercial multifamily.  She knows the area, prevailing rents, has done a lot of business, knows the builders, etc.  But that's a little different than me looking to by the Taco Bell that has 12 years left on their triple net lease on a high traffic corner.  The latter example is at the top of my mind because it's also for sale in the market where I invest and I have absolutely no idea how good of a "deal" that is it or how to really assess it.  Anyway, rambling aside I'd say that you should get a commercial broker if you can to help you through the deal but if calls are going unanswered and you have a responsive residential agent I don't know if it would stop me.

I hope this helps...a little...maybe...

Thank you all for your input. I'm going to talk to the original agent I was referred to and express my concerns. For some reason I think she gives this other agent her overflow. Both agents are nice and the lead agent is very knowledgeable and helpful. I'm am also gonna look for a commercial broker I can just talk to and get some information from to help me with this journey. Thank you all again. 

Originally posted by @Brie Schmidt :

@Georgee Gilbert - Is the property listed?  If so the agent that showed you the property would be owed the commission.  So even if you use someone else and close with them, the original agent can sue and get it.  Then depending on your contract, you could owe the second agent.  

I would ask about her experience in this property type, if you do not feel comfortable with the answer then go to the original agent and explain that you do not feel appropriately represented.  

 This assumes she signed a buyer rep agreement with the original agent?  If the original agent showed the property but contributed nothing else and had no buyer rep agreement in place, one could legally argue she was not the procuring cause at this point in time - this is typically on a case by case basis.

Georgee, your best course of action is the one you’re taking.  Be transparent.  Then, get a commercial broker for any further commercial transactions.  Residential agents usually aren’t very well versed in commercial -  it’s a whole different beast.

Originally posted by @Ryan Smyth :
Originally posted by @Brie Schmidt:

@Georgee Gilbert - Is the property listed?  If so the agent that showed you the property would be owed the commission.  So even if you use someone else and close with them, the original agent can sue and get it.  Then depending on your contract, you could owe the second agent.  

I would ask about her experience in this property type, if you do not feel comfortable with the answer then go to the original agent and explain that you do not feel appropriately represented.  

 This assumes she signed a buyer rep agreement with the original agent?  If the original agent showed the property but contributed nothing else and had no buyer rep agreement in place, one could legally argue she was not the procuring cause at this point in time - this is typically on a case by case basis.

Georgee, your best course of action is the one you’re taking.  Be transparent.  Then, get a commercial broker for any further commercial transactions.  Residential agents usually aren’t very well versed in commercial -  it’s a whole different beast.

I have not signed any agreements with anyone. I have only talked to the Lead agent over the phone who has "assigned" one of her agents to me (without me knowing). The assigned agent is the agent that I viewed the commercial property with. Tmw I will talk with the lead agent. If I don't like what I hear maybe I will make a deal to do my next residential property with her. 

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