In real estate, as insurance, there are independent brokers and affiliated agencies. In New York City, most commercial brokers represent owners or lessors of real property, and are referred to as either “managing” or “listing” agents (agency brokerages). Their primary goal is to market and lease their clients’ properties. If you (as a commercial tenant) deal directly with a managing/listing agent to locate space, you will likely not be shown all the space that’s available (because their commission is half with properties they don’t manage or have listing agreements with). Or if you decide to lease space in one of the buildings marketed by an agency broker, when it comes time to negotiate the terms of the lease, who will represent the interests of your organization? The managing/ agent owes a fiduciary duty to the landlord to obtain the HIGHEST rent, not the lowest rent and concessions for you!
MANHATTAN OFFICE SPACE ® only represents commercial tenants, not owners or landlords. It or a designated broker will provide your organization with a complete listing of all available space, a summary of the costs (including rent, electric and escalations), and comparisons with surrounding submarkets. MANHATTAN OFFICE SPACE ® has access to an independent research firm that provides data on all commercial office space with updates daily, and our affiliates regularly visits locations throughout Manhattan to identify space before it’s even listed.
Finding commercial office space that meets your use requirements and budget involves a series of steps. First, it’s important to decide upon using one broker, but only after you’ve had a chance to evaluate several. Ask for a listing of available space and have the broker tell you which you’ll be shown (that way you will avoid being shown the same space by different brokers). And you don’t need to sign any exclusive agreement, binding you to one brokerage. But it is in your best interest to use one, excellent broker to find space, instead of calling/emailing a dozen agents who will be chasing the same space. That will lessen the landlord’s commitment to show you space and leave the impression that his/her time is being wasted (since multiple agents are chasing other spaces as well). That’s why we designate the most appropriate broker for you to work with.
Second, in the current real estate market, it’s oftentimes best to consider at least two or more spaces upon which to make offers. If you focus on only one, the chances of your offer being accepted may be problematic (due to other prospective tenants). When the vacancy rates were lower, it was often useful to advise landlords that multiple offers were being made. Now that the vacancy rates are higher, all the more reason to use this tactic. But, if you use a landlord’s rep or broker who often represents landlords (listing their property), they’re more likely to share that (confidential) information with the landlord.
Third, be prepared to submit up-to-date financial statements and a brief description of your organization. This is a tenants’ market, but quality, smaller space can often be the subject of several offers. What will make your offer stand out and motivate the landlord to rent the space to your organization? How will your business impact the neighborhood, complement the building, or add value to the leasehold? These are questions you and your broker should consider, and the answers incorporated into the offer. So let us help you use a broker who’s knowledgeable and who will save you money.
SUMMARY OF FACTORS TO CONSIDER IN LEASING OFFICE SPACE
1. Why use a Tenant Broker? The simple answer is you’ll save money. Office space advertised online, in a newspaper, or on a building sign directs you to landlords’ agents who do not represent your interests (they represent the landlord). As a result, the asking rent will be inflated and the agent may not show you all available space. And unlike most who call themselves “tenant brokers,” MANHATTAN OFFICE SPACE ® only represents tenants, not landlords. We know the historic rents in the building, vacancy rate, and other key data which affect market price, and can obtain much better business terms for your organization.