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Commercial Property Managers Beware

As a results oriented Business Coach, I have been amazed at how little it would take to get success for commercial property managers.  I finally decided it was time to "say my piece".

Recently I have been helping my daughter dismantle her very successful Toy Store.  After 5 years, her focus has changed now with 4 children being home schooled.  She was the "anchor" store in the area - creating community events that benefitted not only her business but also included others, 

She definitely made a difference, creating a Science Day so children could come and do hands on projects with Mr. Ray, a Lego Building day for boys AND girls, and story time every Friday.

She even created a children's invention contest after listening to her daughter Anna's suggestion.  It's in it's 5th year and not only presents thousands of dollars to the child winners but also to their schools.  That just a SMALL part of how SHE has impacted the community.

What did her commercial property management company do to contribute to that success?  In 5 years they did not come in to check on us or to support our gorwth or success.  Never asked "how can we help you?"  There was no neighborhood advertising for the strip mall.

To save money they turned off the lights in the parking lot and chose not to do Holiday Decorations. When we created a Street Sign we were told to remove it along with our street balloons each day.  They changed the system and installed water meters in each unit after 3 years.  They took up the benches and decided to have them painted without notification to us and they were gone for months.  They allowed weeds to take over the curbs. AND they increased rent each year.  Many tenants left and when new hopefuls came to take a look - there was no questioning, no negotiation, just an inflated rent quoted.

So now the building is less than 50% occupied.  I understand the bar signed another 5 year contract as well as the little Greek restaurant.  Every other store is suffering. That ultimately hits the bottom line.  What could have been done differently if I had coached that Property Manager?

1.  Pick up the phone if you live too far to visit the spaces you rent.

2.  Ask how you can help and support your client

3.  Host a marketing strategy breakfast for your tenants to brainstorm about cheap and afforable ideas

4.  Invest in advertsing - today with social media tools that are FREE it's crazy not to promote the businesses that are paying you rent

5.  If there are going to be changes - when the lines of communication are always open - there is more understanding and acceptance of modications to lease agreements.

6.  Send them a Congratulatory gift every year they survive.  YOU know the statistics.

7.  Be a RESOURCE to them - not just someone who collects the rent.

I guarantee that if these few steps had been taken - my daughter would have re-considered and stayed - She loved that little store and now she will make a difference elsewhere.

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