By Rich Vaaler and Reid Frazier
Over the next 10-20 years the Loudoun County community is going to experience one of the most rapid developments in history. Now, this is not to say that we are going to lose all of the pieces of Loudoun County that we have come to love. All of this development will bring new businesses of all sizes and industries. These new businesses will not only provide new jobs but offer products and services that will benefit our community. Businesses that are currently located in Loudoun County will have a whole new world open to them as new customers, highly-qualified job candidates, and improved operating spaces will be joining the community. So, how can a business position themselves properly to capitalize on all of this?
The simple answer to this question is to make sure you have an experienced tenant representative working for you. Before all the eyes start rolling due to the simplicity of that answer let us explain why. There are four key areas where an experienced tenant representative can really make a difference, especially at a time like this.
ITS FREE! That’s right, it does not cost you a dollar to have a tenant representative. The tenant rep fee is paid by the landlord. So, you can only benefit from hiring a tenant rep.
The search process. When you are ready to look at space, your tenant rep organizes property tours, makes arrangements to get you into the buildings you wish to see, and provides maps, photos, floor plans, and other materials needed to make an informed decision. With the all the development coming to Loudoun County your tenant rep can make you aware of options that you may not be aware of.
Evaluating your options. Do you know your RPR? You could be in for trouble if your don’t understand this key metric. Choosing the right space can truly make or break your business, whether you’re in retail and need a location, with the right demographics, and foot traffic for your business, or an office space that allows you to attract highly qualified employees. Your tenant representative will sit down with you to evaluate which spaces best fit your long-term goals and financial situation. An experienced tenant representative will be able to provide you with financial analysis models so you are not surprised by anything during the course of your lease.
Negotiating. The commercial lease transaction is like a “Rubik’s Cube” – change one element and the other terms are affected. For example: if you want to start at the lowest possible rent rate, you may incur higher annual escalations. Tenant reps explain the consequences of the many details in commercial leases, which may have far-reaching financial implications over the lease term. Renewal options, repair and maintenance clauses, expense pass through language, and other terms can create expenses that an experienced tenant rep helps you minimize or avoid. Most landlords won’t volunteer cost saving elements in the lease language or financial terms that should be in your lease. They usually don’t put forth their best terms in the initial offer. Allow a tenant rep to make sure you are receiving the most advantageous terms that help your business reach its goals.
Surrounding yourself with a team of experts that are committed to helping your business succeed is vital in the ever-changing world of commercial real estate. Take advantage of the free service of a qualified and experienced tenant representative, it can only benefit you to have someone working in your best interests. And remember, they are not all alike. You need the right one who can identify the best properties, has leading edge tools and skills, to analyze and evaluate the financial terms, and help you negotiate the ideal combination of the components of a commercial real estate lease.
Rich Vaaler is a Commercial Real Estate Specialist with over 35 years experience of helping local business sell or purchase their next commercial property. He achieved success due to his commitment to the enhancement of the real estate profession, client service, and the community.
[Ask The Expert is a promotional program sponsored by Loudoun Now. The writers have held out that they have experience, training, education and/or certifications to qualify as experts in their fields. Although shared on Loudoun Now’s online platforms, the writers are solely responsible for this content.]