Career Story: Owner Of A Small Commercial Real Estate Company

Owner Of A Small Commercial Real Estate Company

Job Title: President Of A Commercial Real Estate Company

Type of Company: My company leases commercial space in four buildings on Cape Cod. The tenants are retailers, a new age health facility and a restaurant.

Education: BA, Economics, Ohio Wesleyan University •• JD, Suffolk University Law School (Boston, MA)

Previous Experience: I started a retail company, which I owned and ran for 30 years. During that time, I purchased four buildings to house my retail stores and warehouse. After I closed the company, I converted my properties into commercial rentals.

Job Tasks: The main responsibility of my job is to respond to problems that my commercial tenants are having with their buildings. I might get a phone call from the restaurant owner telling me that his walk-in cooler isn't working and I would then have to call a refrigeration specialist, tell him about the problem and arrange a service call. I would then call my tenant and tell him what time the repair man was to arrive and tell the tenant to call me if he did not show up on time or to call me when the problem was resolved.

Another problem could be a leaking roof during a storm. I call a roofer and, as soon as the storm is over, have him go and check on it: tell me what needs to be done and give me a cost estimate. If the estimate's reasonable, I would give him the go-ahead to repair it and call the tenant and tell him when the repairs were going to be done.

A far more delicate problem is non-payment of rent. I would call the tenant and ask him when I could expect the rent. In almost all cases, the tenant will tell me when he can pay the rent and will do as he promised.

Best and Worst Parts of the Job: The best part of my job is working with tenants who are nice people and become successful entrepreneurs thanks to their hard work and who frequently consult with me if they are having problems.

The worst part is having tenants who either do not or cannot pay the rent. I then have to call my attorney and go to court to sue for back rent. This is not an enjoyable process, but it is part of my job. Bringing a businessman to court while his business is failing brings out the worst in people, unfortunately.

Job Tips:
1. Take as many accounting and management course as possible. They may be difficult, but they will really help in the management of any type of property...

2. When you rent your first apartment, learn from the successes or failures of your landlord....

3. If you do start working in property management, develop a strong, honest relationship with the tradesmen who do the work for you. After a bad storm, all the roofers and carpenters are very busy. If you have a good relationship with a carpenter, he will put your property near the top of his list as opposed to near the bottom.

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