If you asked 100 Professional People to name the top three challenges, time management would be in the three every time. Calls, emails, texts, and social media demand immediate attention. Even the most focused people can be distracted!
The absolute KEY to managing your time is organizing your calendar and STICKING TO IT. This will really keep you on the path and help you complete your tasks every day. Here is how I do it and I am told that I am one of the most organized Professionals in the industry.
The Night BEFORE
I always start my day the night before. I use a task program that is free and so easy to do. I add everything that I want to accomplish-phone calls, mailing, items to get done and yes even picking up dry cleaning. If I see that I have more to do in one day than I know I can get done-I prioritize them. With my task program if I do not complete an item, I can add notes (if I have started the task) and change the date.
As I go down the list, if I find that something is time sensitive, I add it to my google calendar to be sure not to miss the time. I also am sure to set the reminder appropriately. For example, if I need to drive for 20 minutes I put the reminder at 30 minutes so I leave my office and arrive on time.
First Thing when you start your day
Whenever your day starts (mine is usually 4 AM) resist the urge to jump on email or social media. Put your cell on DO NOT DISTURB. Now get to work on your To-Do List. Take time to complete items that can be done without email and phone-usually marketing, blogging etc.
The exception to NOT checking email is if you are expecting a contract as contracts always take precedence. Do not open every email but take a quick scan to make sure that highly important items are taken care of.
Your concentration, will power and discipline are always best in the morning. I usually make sure if I am doing a financial analysis on properties that I do this in the morning. This is always the best time to knock off the to-do list.
Late Morning-Noon time
Usually when I need to come up for a bit of air, maybe a snack or cup of coffee; I get up from my desk and take a minute. Now, it is a good time to evaluate or even reprioritize the rest of my day. Have I completed the high priorities?
If I have the day under control, this is the time that I look at market items or industry news. Keeping the day organized will let you have the time and energy to take on the unexpected items that suddenly become urgent.
I always put tasks in the afternoon that do not take as much energy or perhaps not as much concentration. It’s a great time to answer all phone calls, emails and texts. Social media takes this time as well.
If the To-Do list has been knocked out or completed as much as possible and you are looking for ways to make your day more productive make calls to your data base or polish your marketing. Prepare for appointments, etc. In the professional world, the successful Professionals do not use the task list completion as the end of the day.
Have a quitting time! You may still take phone calls or check emails. Before you wind down and compete your day-take a minute to go over your tasks one more time to make sure that you have completed all that you wanted to or needed to.
Remember to add your personal time or family time as actual appointments on your calendar! You are not effective unless you have true and enjoyable down time. Someone said to me recently, who will be at your funeral? Prospects or family? This is not to end this on a negative note but to help you stay focused on the items that are important to you!
There are SO MANY so called Real Estate Gurus out in the market place and I really hate to see anyone give them their money! For all of the 20 years that I have selling Investment Real Estate; sometimes it baffles me how these people can take the money from investors-many of whom have little experience.
I have given seminars for Investors since 2003 and I do not want a dime upfront. If I do my job correctly-including educate the Investor; there is not any reason that I do not get compensated for my efforts on a performance basis. Meaning COMMISSION!
Here is what every Investor in Real Estate needs to know-simple steps.
- Pick a Power Team-which means a Broker (preferably a CCIM) that understands the market that you want to invest in.
- With the Power Team- Make sure that the Broker is strong and well connected to the sources that you need(Lawyers, Lenders, Inspectors and other Brokers as well)
- Decide on your PATH. This can mean several things such as what type of asset class do you want. Why do you want to invest? How long do you want to hold the investment? Make sure that your Broker not only understands this but also has the well rounded ability to explore all possibilities with you. Often times when someone visits with me, by the time we are finished with the conversation we are exploring a different path.
- Make sure that you get “papered up”. This means your entity that you are going to use to buy the Asset with. Don’t wait until you go to contract. Contracts can be overwhelming and why not get some of the details completed before you go to contract. You will be busy enough with the Due Diligence that you will not need to be distracted by the paperwork of the Entity,obtaining your EIN number, and establishing the correct bank accounts.
- Speak with either your CPA or your Power Team’s recommended CPA. While your CPA may be great; get the advise of a good Real Estate CPA. Like all professions-some CPAs are better at different things.
- GET QUALIFIED-in today’s world, if you are not qualified the contract is not worth the paper that it is written on!
- Be prepared to write a contract. This does not mean the closing price-it means get the deal and figure it out! Rely on your Broker to advise the offering price. Many markets need a full price offer to obtain the accepted contract.
- ASK QUESTIONS! If I do not hear a question after explaining something; I can only believe that I was understood. The only “stupid” question is the question that is not asked!
I could go on and on and often I do but here is the BEST advise I can give-no matter what market or even country that you invest in:
Give a Tenant a CLEAN place to live
Give a Tenant a SAFE place to live
Give a Tenant responsive property management
Do this and you will not experience vacancies, you should be full and I can speak from experience that you will get above market rents!
Check out our listings Gerchick Real Estate Listings
While it is possible to buy and/or sell a commercial property yourself, a good Commercial Broker is often a great source of information.
A Commercial Broker is valuable to the Buyer and the Seller in a real estate transaction.
FOR THE BUYER
Buyers often fear that using a Commercial Broker will require they pay a fee. Generally (but not always) it is the Seller who pays the sale commission. Another frequent myth is that the Buyer can find a better deal by purchasing “For Sale by Owner” properties because the Seller is avoiding the Broker’s commission. However, in many cases, the selling price of the property ends up being equal or higher than those listed by Commercial Brokers.
Commercial Brokers can:
- Help determine an approximate price range
- Refer you to a lender with financing options best suited to your needs
- Provide access to many resource
- Information on a broader supply thru their resources including sources not available to the public
- Provide a market analysis
- Use their experience in negotiating
- Follow up on all of the contract details and closing process
FOR THE SELLER
When selling a property, the focus should be on:
- Getting the best price
- Selling the property with the least amount of hassle
Commercial Brokers can:
- Provide up-to-date information on what is happening in the real estate market, including financing changes and competing properties
- Serve as your marketing coordinator
- Suggest repairs to market for the highest and best price
- Providing access to Commercial Listing Services
- Marketing to other Commercial Brokers
- Pre-screen and show your property to qualified Buyers
- Guide the transaction to a successful close
HOW TO QUALIFY THE RIGHT COMMERCIAL BROKER FOR YOU
Some of the questions that can help you decide are:
- How will you keep us informed on the progress of the Sale?
- Where do you feel that your strengths lie?
- How did you arrive at the suggested listing price?
- What is your marketing plan?
- Can you give me references of past clients?
- How long have you been practicing Commercial Real Estate?
- Are you a full time Broker?
- Are you an investor yourself?
- How many sales did you have last year?
- How many Buyers/Sellers are you currently working with now?
- How “available” do you make yourself?
- How does someone contact you?
- Are you familiar with the type of property involved?
- What is the average transaction that you did last year?