Burt M. Polson - Commercial Real Estate Broker

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A week in the life of a broker

The last few weeks has been interesting.

I thought it would be fun for you to get a glimpse into a few of the issues our clients bring us. We don’t always know what the week has in store for us as brokers, but here are a few highlights.

"But the owner said it was okay to remove the toilet."

Property management is full of surprises. As I always say, “Perform your regular inspections.” A tenant decided it would be okay to remove the fixtures from one of her restrooms in a space she was leasing.

She needed to make another station in her beauty salon so decided to erect a few walls and install some plumbing.

As an owner or property manager be careful what you say and always put things in writing. Clearly define what it means to “add a station” before you find part of your space torn up.

"That’s a hurricane, no it’s a cyclone, sorry it’s a typhoon."

In real estate it also depends where you are standing...or sitting. A lender in Utah defines “funding” as the day escrow closes. Here in Northern California we call a “closing” the day escrow is completed and title is recorded in the new owner’s name.

This lender said “closing” was the day the buyer signs all the loan documents. We call that “signing.” I am glad I caught this before our closing was off by a couple of days.

“The tenants have torches and spears and are breaking down my door.”

No, not really, but they do want a reconciliation of the triple-net expense reimbursement account.

At a client’s shopping center the tenants banned together to dispute the expense reimbursement they pay each month to the owner for the shopping center operations.

The owner felt it necessary to bring in a third party to review the financial statement and write a letter to the tenants stating everything checked out okay.

One is walking away, the other is sitting tight

Another owner of a shopping center called me that he has a tenant six months into her five year lease and is walking away. On top of that he has another tenant who has been there for five years and decided to stop paying the rent.

There is a process for handling each of these and each is different. You must read the lease before placing a space back on the market or starting the eviction process as the repercussions in doing the wrong thing at the wrong time will greatly complicate the process.

"But I thought it was worth $750,000 not $150,000!"

I felt awful telling a client the land she owned was not what she thought.

For many decades she thought her land was developable for high-density residential. After my research you could only build one house with a granny unit and is now worth considerably less.

Not a typical week, but this gives you an idea of some of the things we see in our world.

Burt M. Polson, CCIM, is a commercial real estate broker selling and leasing commercial real estate. Reach him at (707) 254-8000, burt@acresinfo.com or BurtPolson.com.

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