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Every business in the world needs somewhere to work from; they need a base. Commercial surveyors find, buy, sell, let and manage premises on the direct instructions of their clients. They form the essential bond between those selling, those buying and those leasing offices, shops, leisure premises and warehouses. Managing the interests of their own clients brings focus on negotiation skills, enthusiasm and the ability to learn quickly and think logically whilst always remembering their and their clients' legal standing. At the top end, commercial property surveyors can expect to deal with multi-million pound portfolios making informed decisions depending on the wishes of their clients.
A leasing surveyor or ‘agent’ will look for tenants who are interested in renting the property on a lease for a given number of years at an appropriate rental level. Rent is calculated as £ per Sq. Ft, multiplied by the floor space, and is usually due on an annual basis. Most clients though will prefer to receive payments on a quarterly basis in case of tenant default.
Market knowledge in general, and particularly in the immediate surrounding area, is a cornerstone of any good agent broker. They must promote clients’ buildings on their strengths using their most valuable USPs (unique selling points) and acquire buildings that they believe are the very best for a prospective tenant.
As a representative of a tenant, a leasing surveyor will tour buildings with clients, each building having its own leasing surveyor on the other side of the negotiations. Those letting the building will want the highest price available and those representing the tenant will want the lowest price. Once the tours are completed the potential tenants, with the help of their leasing surveyor, will compile a shortlist of their favourite buildings.
Once this list is narrowed to just two or three the leasing agent for the tenants will ask for ‘proposals’ from the leasing surveyors of the buildings of interest. Depending on the best deal offered and the wishes of the client, the leasing surveyor for the tenant will select one building and will make a counter offer. Both parties will negotiate until they reach a level suitable for both sets of clients.
Completion occurs when lawyers are instructed that the building is ‘under offer’ and the contracts are signed. Leasing agents will then collect their fees.