Advice When Considering Commercial Real Estate in Windsor Ontario

Posted in Buyer Blog | 07/08/2013

Commercial Real Estate In Windsor Ontario

Commercial Real Estate In Windsor Ontario

If you are considering purchasing commercial real estate in Windsor Ontario, make sure you carefully research the best type of property available for your needs.  Study the market and hire an experienced real estate agent who can provide you with valuable information on the real estate market today.  By selecting and buying just any kind of property, you may very well lose money and be in debt for years.  The goal is to make sure that you find commercial real estate that will be profitable and works well with your financial portfolio.

Some tips that every commercial real estate buyer should consider:

1.  When viewing a property, take pictures of any problems (real or potential).  Such things to look for are holes, water leaks, discoloration, mold, etc.  Basically, if anything doesn’t look right, take a digital picture of it.  You will want to review this with the seller or landlord and certainly share later with an inspector if you decide to make an offer.

2.  If you have decided to lease commercial property, then you want to make sure that pest control is completely up to date.  Does the property have a reputation for rodents or bug infestation?

3.  When investing in commercial properties, understand that it takes a lot of your personal time, more than you probably can imagine.  Are you prepared for this?  There will be many calls and searching for the right property, making an offer, doing the necessary paperwork and then becoming a landlord.  You will get urgent requests regarding repairs or other issues so be prepared.  Don’t forget that you will at some point be resolving disputes with tenants, particularly if you own an apartment complex.  Of course, you if are buying a fixer upper, you can plan on spending more of your personal time on your real estate hiring professionals or making the repairs yourself.

4.  Are you prepared for the costs?  It’s not just buying a building, it is maintaining it as well.  The codes must always be current, insurance, upkeep, utilities, mortgage if property is vacant, repairs or just a few of the costs that will be incurred monthly.  Always plan and prepare for the unexpected emergency.  Don’t forget tenants that are late paying their rent or going out of business can create havoc on your budget as well.

Windsor Condos

Windsor Condos

5.  Are you prepared and have the stomach for the risk that is involved when purchasing commercial real estate?  Some properties have better potential financial results than other type of properties.  Because each market is unique, it is important to walk around the neighbourhood at different hours of the day.  Consider youself as if you are your tenant.  If you are buying an apartment complex near an industrial center, think about the type of renter you will be attracting.  If you are thinking about a restaurant, is the location good where customers will feel safe? Is there plenty of parking?  Again, drive by the areas at different times throughout the day to see if there are any doubts.

6.  Know what you are buying.  It’s surprising how many buyers will get caught up in the moment and buy a commercial property without doing the research. Is the price fair?  Why is the seller getting rid of the property?  What types of loans are available? Building appreciation with commercial real estate usually takes longer than residential properties,  so do you have a solid business plan?  Compare insurance costs and determine what you need.

Of course, there are many other things you must consider before meeting with a real estate agent, however, this brings me to my most important point.  Hire an agent that knows the area like the back of their hand.  This is not the time to work with agents who are from out of the area and don’t know what is happening with the community.  If you normally use a particular agent, yet he or she is unfamiliar with the location you are interested in, then ask them for references.  While you may want to feel loyal to an agent you have worked with for years, if they don’t know a community where you want to invest, then by all means, they should very well understand.

Finally, go into your purchase with confidence and a full understanding of what you are purchasing.  Never hesitate to pause and ask questions so you are fully informed of the process.  If at any time you feel doubt, then talk to your real estate agent about your concerns and see if it is worth pursuing.  Buying commercial real estate isn’t for everybody, but for others it’s a great investment.

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