Use a pro when leasing commercial space

Most landlords or building owners have professional representation looking out for their best interests. Why shouldn’t you have the same? 
If you’re looking for a location for your company or office, many building owners or landlords will offer incentives to have you consider their site. This could mean paying lower gross occupancy costs in the final lease agreement. 
Signing a mandate letter with a REALTOR® means you will have one advisor working hard to represent you and your company in the marketplace. They can talk to any number of building owners or landlords without revealing who you are — this means they can investigate possible deals without any pressure for a commitment. 
Whether you are an office, industrial or retail tenant, a commercial REALTOR® has the experience and market knowledge to find the right premises that fit your business plans and financial requirements. If you have one location or many, whether they are located in Canada or worldwide, discuss your requirements with a commercial REALTOR®. They are professionals licensed under provincial legislation, and they are required to take industry-related courses throughout the year. 
Whether you’re facing a lease renewal, or looking for a new location for your business or office, talk to a commercial REALTOR® about the services they provide. 
Is this the first time you’ve leased space for your business? 
Here are some basic steps to follow: 
Interview commercial REALTORS® who serve the area you’re interested in. Some specialize in the type of space required (office, industrial, commercial, etc). Select the one you think will be your best business partner. When you select a REALTOR® to work with, they work as if they were your partner. Make sure you have a good rapport, and make sure the REALTOR® has the time and resources to devote to your company. 
Sign a mandate letter. This specifies the services the REALTOR® will provide, how they’ll be compensated, and includes a “needs analysis” that outlines your needs. This could include total space required, special facilities (such as a loading dock), the number of employees to be accommodated, and shared space (board rooms, kitchen, a lounge, etc.). 
If you are not sure leasing is the answer, the REALTOR® could provide an analysis of owning versus leasing and renewal versus relocation. 
Once these questions are answered, your REALTOR® can develop a specification sheet, or “spec sheet,” for your company. It will be used as guidance to identify all available options for your company. 
Your REALTOR® will provide a short list of options based on the “spec sheet.” Usually you’ll want to personally visit these sites. 
Your REALTOR® may then prepare a “Request For Proposals,” or RFP, that is sent to the owners or landlords of preferred sites you have identified. 
Once the landlord or owner submits a proposal, your REALTOR® will go through and analyse the terms, and provide recommendations to you. 
You choose your preferred proposal, and your REALTOR® will then begin the detailed negotiations. 
Once all of the terms and conditions are agreed to, a lease will be executed for you or your company’s designated representative to sign. 
Ask a commercial REALTOR® for more details about any of the specific services detailed here.
Visit to find a list of your local commercial REALTORS® belonging to the Commercial Division of WinnipegREALTORS®.
(Source:  Used with the permission of the Canadian Real Estate Association.)