A leasing agent, or commercial leasing agent, works for the landlords of shopping centers or office buildings to find tenants. He or she earns a commission for finding tenants and usually handles all aspects of leases. Excellent negotiating skills and the ability to recognize a qualified tenant are crucial characteristics of a good agent.
Landlords expect the leasing agent to rent their properties to responsible commercial tenants for a fair price. They require a fair return on investment (ROI), while tenants require a fair rent and the right location for their business. The agent is hired to serve the landlord, so the tenants must take responsibility for ensuring that the location and terms of the lease meet all of their requirements.
A prospective commercial tenant should ask what the total rent is for utilities, as well as if there are any other fees. The prospective tenant should consider details such as air conditioning, noise level, zoning regulations, and availability of parking. Room for company growth should be considered to be sure the space will be large enough so the company will not be forced to move again too soon.
The leasing agent must find out as much information from the prospective tenants as possible to ensure a good fit for the landlord's property. Both the agent and the prospective tenant should be sure and informed about the leasing decision. Neither party should be made to feel rushed and the lease is not legally binding unless it is signed by both the tenant and the landlord.
The agent usually has a meeting with the prospective tenants to communicate the terms of the property lease such as the amount of rent and any regulations. When, and if, an agreement is reached, a copy of the lease is sent to the prospective tenants requesting a signature so that the landlord can then sign the lease agreement.
Real estate experience is helpful in becoming a leasing agent, but knowledge of each particular property up for lease is absolutely essential. Many people in this job receive a salary plus commission, but this may depend on whether the position is temporary, part-time, casual, or on a contract basis as opposed to full time. Some post secondary education is usually preferred. The commission is usually based on a percentage of the monthly rent the new tenant will pay.