Day in the Life of Commercial Agent

I pick up my morning coffee at Kaffeine on Eastcastle Street (one the best coffee shops in Fitzrovia I might add), before I meet contractors and our Head of Management on site at some offices we have recently let on Great Portland Street. We have had complaints from other tenants about the noise as they sand the floor and we therefore need to manage the expectations of both parties and inform the other tenants. Thankfully we come to an agreement.

I next take a short walk over to see a property close to Harley Street with one of our Graduate Surveyors on behalf of a client who has instructed us to acquire investment commercial property. As a firm of Chartered Surveyors in London we cover a range of property and it is a good opportunity for our Graduate Surveyors to learn all aspects of surveying and commercial agency work. After finishing the inspection we walk back to our offices in Margaret Street to write a report for our client, recommending that they view the property.

Our weekly Commercial Agency team briefing is next on the agenda. We meet for a quick bite to eat at one of the cafés or restaurants on Goodge Street where we discuss new developments, investments and potential on and off market properties. Our commercial property agents cover all areas of London and we regularly keep up each other up to date about our core areas such as Fitzrovia and Noho/Soho. It’s also a great opportunity for us to arrange access to properties early and get a foot in the door for our retained clients to see new opportunities in London before many others.

This afternoon my first job is to inspect a property on behalf of a landlord on Wells Street, W1 with one of our building surveyors to assess what works are required by the outgoing tenant for our surveyors to complete a Schedule of Dilapidations. With the outgoing tenant on a Full Repairing and Insuring lease, it is paramount that we inspect the premises thoroughly to ensure the landlord and their property are protected and the premises is given back to us in a good state of repair and redecoration, ready to be put on the market to let as soon as possible. The inspection went well and the outgoing tenant was very accommodating.

I get back to our offices on Margaret Street and put my “tenant” hat on. This particular tenant came across Davis Brown online and they contacted our commercial agency department to help with a rent review their landlord has served on them. The rent has doubled and no comparables have been supplied to support the landlords rental increase. As a commercial agent one of my roles is to search for comparable evidence in Fitzrovia, W1. Commercial agents are fully aware that rents in Fitzrovia and surrounding areas such as Soho/Marylebone increase year on year but it is imperative to ensure our clients pay a reasonable rent for the commercial premises that they let. After some research, we were able to support a considerably reduced rental increase (with evidence supporting such) and submitted a reduced rental increase in our clients favour. As always, rent reviews are not done in a day, but we are confident that the evidence supplied and our commercial agency experience in the area, especially W1 will stand us in good stead to facilitate the correct outcome for our clients. As with all rent reviews, providing excellent evidence of the local market is essential, whether you are acting on behalf of a tenant or a landlord.

Back with my “landlord” hat on, final job of the day was to inspect a small office suite which the current landlord is considering letting on Goodge Street for the first time after his current tenant of 20 years has decided to retire. As with inspecting properties for a Schedule of Dilapidations, it is always good practice to be honest and up front with landlords to advise what, if any, works, you feel need to be undertaken to ensure the best rental income for them. Very little works were required on the premise (which is not always the case, especially if the premises have not been put onto the market for some time) and the landlord was happy to listen to our guidance and advice. After a thorough inspection and discussions on the current market trends and new tenants expectations from today’s market, I am happy to say that we agreed terms and I am looking forward to taking the marketing photos after minor redecorations works have been carried out and adding yet another property onto the Davis Brown Commercial Property portfolio.

After a busy day, I start to look forward and think about what tomorrow will bring…

If you would like further information about Davis Brown Commercial Agents services, contact our office in Fitzrovia on 020 7637 1066 or email us at info@davis-brown.co.uk

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