Successful CRE professionals know they need to keep track of their resources. Properties, furnishings, office equipment, even pens, paper and coffee creamer (well, maybe not that far) all require regular expenditures of money and resources. There’s one area, however, where many involved in commercial real estate fail to account for output; their time.
Whether driving between locations, talking through managerial issues or reviewing and filing documents, managing a diverse portfolio of commercial properties takes up plenty of your time. These minutes quickly add up to hours and days. Remember that old saying “time is money?” For a CRE professional this holds doubly true as time spent on unnecessary tasks takes away from the time available to help grow your real estate portfolio or, worse yet, cuts into your own personal downtime. If you’re shaking your head while mumbling not me, read on. We’ve laid out some of the most common ways we see CRE professionals wasting their time and potential.
Whether it’s commercial real estate or a major corporation, there is no greater time-sink in the professional world than unnecessary meetings. Now, don’t get us wrong. Collaborating with members of your external and internal team is an incredibly useful tool for exchanging ideas and maintaining or growing your business. But when your weekly team meeting starts turning into five hours of weekly meetings debating the merits of grey versus brown walls, you may have a problem. To keep meetings short and productive, be sure to create and distribute an agenda ahead of time and ask for feedback on minor issues via email.
Sweating the Small Stuff
Speaking of that paint color, does it really matter that Susie in procurement thinks beige is in this year while Joe in accounting wants grey? Large swaths of time can be lost debating the merits of minor details that have little to no impact on your CRE business. Consider using your decision-making power to break the tie and once you make up your mind, don’t waste more time second guessing.
Inability to Delegate
Not to beat a dead horse, but why are you making the decisions regarding paint color in the first place? While some decisions are important enough to need your input, others should be left to one of the qualified team members you work with. Make a list of daily tasks currently on your plate and review them to see if any could be handled by someone else in your organization. This simple exercise will free up your time for the tasks that require your skill and expertise.
Missing the Right People
Perhaps the reason you aren’t able to delegate is that you don’t have the right people working with you in managing your commercial real estate business. Choosing staff and business partners to help handle the day in and out affairs of your CRE portfolio is as important as choosing the properties themselves. A good team member will be proactive, not waiting for assignments, but jumping in to help out. The wrong ones will take up both time and resources, especially when you need to replace them when they don’t work out in the long term. Don’t be afraid to interview a variety of people when filling open positions and always follow up on references. Look for individuals that think outside of the box and that can be invested in your business as if it were their own.
Know Your Properties, and Your Prospective Tenants
“It’s all in the details” may be another overused quip, but in the world of CRE professionals nothing could be more true. Not knowing the intricate details of your properties, when leases expire, which provisions apply to which tenants, could all cause delays, loss of revenue or headaches when your expectations don’t match up with reality. Similarly, not having excellent due diligence on prospective tenants can lead to costly and time-consuming processes to evict and replace, or worse yet, repair your property after they exit. Lease abstracts for each property in your CRE portfolio and a thorough tenant vetting process will keep you from wasting valuable time and money in the long run.
Don’t be Caught Unawares
On the topic of overused sayings, few phrases cost a CRE professional more in lost time and revenue than “let me get back to you on that one.” A well-informed property owner or manager should have access to critical details regarding their CRE portfolio at the fingertips. The inability to provide instant responses on questions regarding terms, size of property, or critical capacity can mean the difference between a closed transaction or a busted deal.
Access to the Right Tools
What ties each of these critical time vampires together is the lack of the right tool for the right job when it comes to your CRE business. From critical lease details to communicating and making decisions within your team, the right portfolio management software is critical to helping you avoid time wasting minutia and inefficiencies in commercial real estate. Companies such as Quarem have a history of developing and implementing property management solutions for the busy CRE professional. At Quarem we can help choose the correct readymade software solution or customize and design a platform that saves you valuable time in your day to day operations. From team messaging to lease abstracting and beyond, contact us today to see what Quarem can do to help you.