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Ask Dave

Going Commercial

Lisa has her eyes set on getting into commercial real estate to help her family's restaurant business. What's the first step?

QUESTION: Lisa is finishing getting her real estate license. Her family owns 4 restaurants and wants to open 8 more. How can she get into commercial real estate?

ANSWER: Commercial real estate is a more technical side of the field. There’s a lot more math and formula. How to get started would be trying to find some strip centers that you want to be in or are already in and find out who is developing and running those. You can bring them some customers by you being on their staff. That’s the benefit to them, while the benefit to you is that they teach you the business in order to get your business.

It’s a little different from city to city, but usually the commission is paid out as a percentage of the total lease, and it’s paid out on the front end. Get in there and learn the business. Generally, commercial is tougher to break into when you are green, but you have some background here.