Commercial Brokers

One of the best ways to find apartment building deals is to utilize commercial brokers in your business.  Their full time job/business is to buy and sell Real Estate.

They are in the game on a daily basis and come across deals that you will not hear about even if you are in the game full-time.

In this article, I am going to share with you what I believe is the single most powerful resource available to commercial Real Estate investors; both seasoned and new investors (and it’s free).

Commercial real estate brokers can bring you deals but more specifically, you will want to look for an apartment broker or multi family specialist.  The more focused they are on the asset class you are looking for and in the area you desire, the better teammate they will be for you.

Before finding your commercial brokers, you should get pre-qualified.  If you have cash or another source of funding already in place, you are all set.  If you are just getting started, make sure to talk to your local community bank or commercial lender.  Setup a meeting with them and get your pre-approval letter.

Once you know that you are qualified and for what, you can present yourself in a better light to the commercial broker.  They will take you more seriously and put you closer to the top of their list of buyers that they will call when they find a deal.

Next, find some more apartment building brokers.  You can’t rely on just one.  Get to know as many as you can in your area and follow up with them once a week or once a month depending on the relationship until they are consistently bringing you deals.

To find multi-family specialists, you can look in the local advertisements and the internet.  Look for apartment building deals and call the broker.  If you live in a less populated area, you may want to look for any income property brokers and ask them who they know or if they handle apartment buildings.  Another great place to find commercial brokers is on LoopNet.

The best way to find a highly qualified commercial broker is to visit http://www.ccim.com.  Go to the “Find A Professional” page and VOILA, you have some instant business.  

In my opinion, this is the single greatest resource that you have available when starting your commercial Real Estate biz.  These brokers have been through an intense amount of studying to become proficient at helping their clients (you?) achieve the maximum success.  

The CCIM designation has been compared to a PHD degree…

These are highly qualified, experienced and usually active brokers who have all of the resources, deals, and knowledge that you lack.  It is not easy to get a good relationship going with a good broker, but if you call all of the CCIM brokers in your market, you will likely find a few you can begin to work with.

One word of caution: make sure that when you have a good broker you are talking to, you are being honest with them.  The more experienced brokers will sniff you out real quick.  The newer agents will have more energy and room for growth.  I would target the latter.

Also, if you are in a deal, do not back out once you have completed your due diligence phase.  That broker may never work with you again and they may also tell all their friends not to.

Commercial brokers over all are not bad to work with.  They are not high-pressure like car salespeople but they will test you in the beginning.  They talk to many people every day and they value their time.

Follow the steps above and you should be well on your well to your next apartment building deal.