The Passion for Commercial Real Estate
You probably already know that a real estate broker is the best person to help you sell, buy, or rent a house. But did you know that some brokers specialize in commercial and industrial properties? To better understand this area of real estate brokerage, we asked Diane, who has been a commercial real estate broker since 2009, to tell us about her passion for commercial real estate.
What drew you to commercial real estate brokerage?
I worked for over 20 years as a construction contractor. When I became a real estate broker, I thought I would go into high-end homes, because that’s what I was building.
But soon after, a client asked me to help them with a transaction involving two abandoned buildings within Old Montreal. They wanted to turn former banks into luxury condos. I made my name in the commercial business with that transaction and that’s how it started!
How do you help your clients?
When you start a business or rehabilitate an abandoned building, it takes a lot of knowledge. You have to know the business, but you also have to deal with zoning issues, construction or renovation, taxation, etc.
A commercial real estate project is much
more complex than a residential project. As a broker, I help people avoid the
pitfalls. And I can call on my network of professionals to solve any problems
along the way.
What satisfaction do you get from your work?
I enjoy accompanying entrepreneurs. I like
to help them build their projects on sound foundations. And I don’t exclusively
work on large condo projects. Often, I support young people who are opening
their first business, a gym, an electric bike store or a bakery. I like to
guide them, to show them the possibilities.
With new entrepreneurs, I’m happy to be
there to ask them the real questions. To help them assess their financial
capacity and risk tolerance. This is very important, because you have to know
your limits. Starting a business is very stressful and you have to be able to
sleep at night!
My clients have been very, very grateful.
It feels good to be thanked!
What’s also nice about my job is customer loyalty. The people I work with are all in business. So, when they have a new project, they know I’m there for them.
Do you have any tips for people who want to benefit from their relationship with a commercial real estate broker?
If you want to buy or lease a commercial or industrial building, team up with a broker. It’s essential. You can even find commercial real estate brokers who specialize in the specific type of space you are looking for.
Be upfront with your broker: in order for them to help you, you need to be able to talk about the “real deal”: your situation, your goals, your fears and your limitations. Being clear with your broker allows them to give you the advice you need.
You can rest assured that your success will also be your real estate broker’s success!