Choosing the right broker to work with you on a commercial real estate deal is an important decision, one that will go a long way toward determining how smoothly your transaction will go. A professional commercial broker will help you navigate the process, cutting down on delays and expenses and helping you avoid some of the risks you might encounter if you were to attempt to go through the process on your own.

With as important of a decision as choosing a commercial real estate broker is, it is important you put the appropriate amount of time and effort into making it. With this in mind, here are some tips to help you choose a broker that best fits your needs and situation.

  • Create a list: Look around the area for commercial real estate brokers that you think are worth researching further. Only after you have a list of contenders are you able to compare their credentials against each other.
  • Look for experienced professionals: Ideally, you’re going to want to work with a broker who’s been in real estate for a while, but that they have significant experience in commercial real estate. There are quite a few brokers who occasionally move from residential to commercial to chase larger profits, but they might not have the same understanding of the details and differences of the commercial field that a person who has focused on commercial real estate for years does.
  • Determine your comfort level: Meet the broker and the broker’s staff, and gauge whether or not it feels like a group you’re comfortable working with. Are they friendly and easy to communicate with? It’s helpful to have a team that you feel like you’ll have a good working relationship with – that will make your transaction feel a lot easier.
  • Assess whether or not they’re equipped to help you: Does the broker have experience in the particular type of property you’re after? There are quite a few differences in commercial spaces. Consider how retail and office spaces differ, and all the extra factors you have to take into consideration for industrial spaces. Going along with that, does the broker have all the knowledge, information and tools necessary to give you the best service possible for your particular type of property? They should have excellent access to crucial analytical tools and market information if they’re going to get you the best results with your transaction.
  • Make sure they’re committed to your needs: You should always be sure you’re working with a broker who’s putting your needs ahead of anyone else’s, especially their own. If the broker has any sort of interest in a particular property you’re interested in, you cannot trust they are capable of putting your needs first. If the broker seems to dismiss your needs or keeps pushing you in a way you don’t want to go, you should also take that as a major red flag.

For more information about choosing an ideal commercial real estate broker for your situation, contact an experienced real estate attorney in the U.S. Virgin Islands.

Tom Bolt is Managing Attorney of BoltNagi PC, a full-service business law firm on St. Thomas U.S. Virgin Islands.