Are you looking for the right broker to market your office for sublease? No matter the reason you need to put your space up for sublease, whether you need to downsize, expand or relocate from your current space, it’s important to hire the right team. 

At AQUILA, we’ve successfully subleased space for many clients. We ensure that each client understands each step of the sublease process and what to expect along the way.

Read Next: How Much Does It Cost to Sublease Your Office or Industrial Space?

We understand that hiring a broker can be an overwhelming task as there are countless firms offering subleasing services. To help make the selection process easier, we’ve compiled a list of five important questions to ask a sublease broker, before making the decision to hire them.

 

1. Does the broker work for a reputable firm with access to resources, research and technology?

It’s important to verify that your broker works for a reputable firm. The two key components to hiring a reputable brokerage firm are reputation and resources.

Reputation

Is this brokerage firm reliable and respected amongst their clients and other industry professionals?

Client testimonials and references can help identify the firms that go above and beyond to get their clients the best results possible. Check the firm’s website for case studies or quotes from past clients to find out how successful they have been in the past. Asking the firm to provide references can also ensure that you are getting an unbiased opinion on their work.

Read Next: What Are the Best Tenant Representation Firms in Austin, Texas?

Resources

Before hiring your sublease broker, you should make sure that they have access to the resources your project requires.

Listing Sites

When searching for the right tenant to fill your office sublease, it is imperative that your broker lists your office space on the proper listing sites. Your firm should have the ability to list spaces on sites like CoStar and Loopnet as well as their own website. This will help expedite the process of subletting your space, elevate awareness and get your property in front of as many eyes as possible.

Smaller firms may not have the budget for services like CoStar and therefore your options in finding the right subtenant may be limited.

Market Research Department

More sophisticated firms will usually have established market research departments that can provide their clients with market data including rental rates, trends, detailed maps and more.

 

Are you looking for the latest data on the Austin office market?

Download our latest Austin Office Market Report to take an in-depth look at the latest rates, trends and transitions. 

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Marketing Horsepower

Marketing is an essential part of subleasing your property. In addition to listing your property on websites, you will also need essential marketing tools such as a flyer, photography, an email campaign and possibly even a compelling video or virtual tour. When you are searching for a sublease broker you should make sure they will provide these marketing tools and have a robust team to support your property. This will help you position your space competitively and help give you the best chance of moving it quicker.

Read Next: 5 Reasons Your Sublease May Not Be Moving (And How to Move Forward)

Specific Questions to Ask

To confirm that your broker works for a reliable firm with access to sufficient resources, you may be inclined to ask these questions:

  • Do you have any testimonials you can share from clients you’ve worked with in the recent past?
  • Do you have access to listing services such as CoStar?
  • What resources and research does your firm have access to?
  • Who are some of the firm’s other clients? Can you provide any references that I can talk to?
  • Are there any relevant case studies from past projects that you were involved in that I can look over?
  • How long has your firm been in business?
  • What sort of marketing materials will you provide for my project? 

 

2. How much experience and market knowledge does the broker have?

It’s important that your broker has both industry experience and a wealth of market intelligence. 

Experience

Subleasing office, retail and industrial spaces can present unique challenges that only experienced brokers will have experience in. Before hiring your broker, you should ask about their subleasing experience or testimonials from their previous sublease clients. 

An experienced broker with a track record of successful subleases should also be able to navigate challenging sublease terms, like landlord consent or recapture rights.

AQUILA PRO TIP

Review Recapture Rights and Landlord Consent with Your Broker

After hiring your broker, review the sublease rights in your current lease to ensure that your landlord cannot deny, delay or withhold consent to a sublease.

Market Knowledge

When deciding who to hire as your sublease broker, it’s also important to consider how well the broker knows the local market.

Every market is different and has its own unique characteristics. Your broker should have an extensive background in your market in order to recruit the right subtenant and negotiate the best possible terms on your behalf. 

This should include a knowledge of both the Austin market as a whole and your specific submarket, including vacancy and rental rates, upcoming deliveries, recent transactions, and more. Additionally, have an understanding of the current sublease market in order to best position you amongst the competition. 

Specific Questions to Ask

  • Are you experienced in subleasing spaces? Can you provide references or client testimonials from other sublease deals?
  • Can you provide me a sampling of similar projects you’ve worked on in the past five years?
  • Do you have experience navigating subleasing rights like recapture rights and landlord consent?
  • What specific markets do you have experience in?
  • Do you have specific market intelligence about the market my sublease is located in?

 

3. Does the broker work for a full-service firm?

One of the biggest advantages you can have in the sublease market is hiring a broker from a full-service firm. A full-service real estate firm offers real estate services beyond tenant representation, including project leasing, property management, project management, and investment sales.

Hiring a full-service firm will allow you to have more access to deals in the market, a property marketing team, landlord insights and knowledge from both commercial leasing brokers and tenant rep brokers. This means they will have substantially more knowledge and connections from different sides of the market.

This can be an enormous advantage when it comes to moving your sublease space quickly and efficiently.

Typically tenant representation brokers handle subleases, however, in some cases, especially for particularly large blocks, it makes sense to engage a leasing broker as a part of the team as well. The best way to achieve this is by hiring a full-service firm. 

Read Next: Why Use a Full-Service Commercial Real Estate Firm to Successfully Sublease Your Space?

Specific Questions to Ask

In order to confirm that your broker is an expert in your market, you should consider asking the following questions:

  • Do you work at a full-service firm? Does your firm have a property leasing team?
  • Does your firm share information across teams?
  • What property marketing capabilities does your firm have?
  • Who will be on my brokerage team? What does each team member specialize in?

 

4. Does the broker know your property type?

In order to swiftly sublease your space, you should look for a broker who not only knows the market but also specializes in your property type. 

Commercial real estate brokers often specialize in one or two types of properties including industrial, retail, office, multifamily, etc.

Knowing the exact details of any given market is crucial in positioning your opportunity for success and finding the right subtenant.

For example, a tenant offering Class A office space in downtown Austin for sublease and a tenant with a large warehouse space in the suburbs will likely require different teams with specific market knowledge and skills that match their unique needs. 

Specific Questions to Ask

To clarify that your broker has experience with subletting your property type, ask the following questions:

  • Which property type do you specialize in? 
  • Can you give me an overview of the current market for my property type?
  • What specific challenges or opportunities do you see for my sublease?
  • Have you subleased spaces like mine in the past? How will you promote my space to successfully locate the right subtenant?

 

5. How will the broker differentiate your space?

Finding the right subtenant to take over your space is all about your broker’s ability to differentiate your property from other spaces, especially in a highly competitive market.

Has your broker thought about your project and how to set it apart from the competition? Do they bring any unique skills or abilities to the table that another firm wouldn’t?

These skills could be many different things. From a particular relationship with your landlord or surrounding tenants to additional marketing tools beyond the basic materials. 

Specific Questions to Ask

Questions to ask your sublease broker to clarify their ability to differentiate your space are:

  • What is your plan to differentiate my space?
  • What will you bring to this assignment that other brokers cannot?
  • Do you plan on creating virtual property tours?
  • Does your firm provide photography and videography services?

 

What’s Next?

I hope after reading this article, you have a little more clarity on how to hire the right sublease broker for your space. To learn more about AQUILA Commercial’s expert sublease team, schedule a consultation with one of our tenant representation brokers today.

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Max McDonald | Commercial Tenant Representation in Austin, Texas | AQUILA Commercial

Max McDonald

Max is a dynamo; a workhorse for AQUILA’s tenant representation team. He runs the surveys, makes the calls and crunches the numbers in order to present his clients with the best available options in the market.

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