The seller is the most important component in commercial real estate

One thing I learned 32 years ago was the importance a true seller is to a hotel transaction. I don’t care how much money a buyer has, without a ready, willing and able seller, he is just wasting his time. One of the first questions I always ask when a new client wants to sell their hotel is, why? The answer to that question will largely dictate if we have the likelihood of a transaction or just a tire kicker. If he can’t tell you “Honestly” why, he just needs to call someone else.

In these type cases if the seller answers, “it seems like a good time to sell,” what he is really saying is he wants you to price the deal (via offers) for him, but he is not committed to close the sale transaction. Basically, he is just fishing for a value. The answer I want to hear to that question is the real reason. Several examples are the following, it doesn’t fit with our future growth plans, it’s old and I don’t want to invest any more into it, we want to redeploy the money into something else, family situation, health situation, shift in investments etc. etc. Those are real reasons that we believe are actionable.

A true seller will be accommodating, helpful, flexible, and more importantly, easy to work with. The person that always draws to a hard line in the sand is not someone you want to spent time trying to please. In commercial real estate, price, location, performance, age etc. are all good and important aspects, but the smack daddy thing you must have is a ready, willing, and able seller. KT

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