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The world of commercial real estate can seem overwhelming. There are many factors involved and a tremendous amount of money is on the line. Knowing how to pick your next commercial real estate property is very important to success. There are a lot of strategies involved behind a great deal.

The first part that you need to deal with is to educate yourself. There are many great books about commercial real estate, some of them from acclaimed investors. But there are also podcasts and tutorials available on YouTube. A great source of local information is from investor meetup groups. Spending time educating yourself will go a long way.

A great opportunity can be if you work at a job in a commercial real estate. Depending on the job, you might learn how to build properties, develop projects or manage properties. This hands-on education won’t be obtainable from books and best of all, you’ll be paid to do it.

For those seeking professional credibility, the CCIM can be a great designation. The required courses will teach you to analyze finances, research markets and make investment decisions.

The next step is to choose your property type.

Multifamily – This includes a wide variety of properties, everything from a duplex to an apartment complex. Leases tend to be shorter than other types of commercial.

Office – This could be anything from a skyscraper to a commercially-zoned home.

Retail – Typical retail properties are stores and restaurants

Industrial – This includes warehouses, distribution centers and factories. Retrofitting the building between tenants can be expensive.

Hospitality – Hotels are a popular option, especially in tourist areas.

Land banking – This is land speculation. Investors purchase tracts of land hoping they’ll appreciate in value.

Development – Raw land is acquired and properties are constructed

Fix and flip – Similar to residential, a property that needs work is acquired and improved.

Find a broker, but not any broker. If possible, rely on personal references. If you can, find a broker that specializes in the type of property you are looking for.

Likewise, find a highly recommended commercial real estate attorney. They can help you out with zoning restrictions, environmental issues and even help you negotiate.

If you plan on using a management company, find one before you purchase a property. Build relationships with lenders.

Picking your first commercial real estate property might seem difficult. Follow our tips to gain as much advantage as possible.

Joseph Joe Mcinerney Chicago