Why hands-on real estate asset management matters

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As WiRE FS, we show particular interest in real estate asset management with a specific focus on being hands-on. From our experience, the value of any property – and ultimately the return on investment – is proportional to the amount of attention it will receive and the management practices that you will follow.

In Cyprus, the concept of good asset management practices has yet to enter the mainstream. Most property owners are under the impression there is nothing to be gained by investing in a property before it is eventually sold – they believe they will still receive the same offers, both in terms of amount and speed. Most likely, they hold this view because the local real estate market, while a significant sector of the economy, still clings to old-fashioned ideas. Asset management abroad is considered to be a necessary practice that maximises property value and increases performance, which explains why there are so many companies exclusively working in this particular area. We think the time has come to see further developments in this area, in Cyprus as well. This is especially true for now: with banking institutions and real estate asset management companies adding several properties into the market, competition has intensified, and it has become increasingly important for properties to stand out.

To drive the point home, let’s follow an example of good real estate asset management practices. We took this project with the end-goal to sell an industrial property. In contrast with the typical process of selling a property in Cyprus, we followed these steps:

1. We collected and went through every document related to the property, e.g. title deed, planning permit, architectural drawings, etc. At the end of the day, prospective buyers pay attention to due diligence, as it creates a sense of security and professionalism. 

2. We inspected the premises and suggested to the owner to undertake all the necessary improvements, such as repairing major damages and sprucing the place up, so that the property makes a good first impression. 

3. The next step was to plan a professional photoshoot, both of the premises and the general infrastructure, so that it draws the attention of prospective buyers when marketing it across various media platforms.

4. Then, we informed the property owner on the prices that similar properties had fetched and what their initial price was. On many occasions, the owner’s valuation of the property delineates from the actual value but it’s important to have a realistic asking price from the beginning. 

5. We prepared a list with companies in the area that might be interested in the property, so that our search to find the right buyer was targeted. 

6. We contacted all potential, prospective buyers, informed them about the property and recorded their interest. With the companies that didn’t show any interest, we made sure to recorded why so that we could go back to the vendor to see if there was anything to amend or improve, e.g. high asking price, needed more documents provided, etc.

7. At the same time, we prepared a second list with potential buyers based on a potential change of use of the property, in accordance with the area’s urban development plan. 

8. We gave detailed, weekly reports to the owner on each stage of the process that we followed.

The process is quite rigid, but we finally found the perfect buyer for the property. Following these steps, we assisted the property owner feeling that he did everything in his power to get the best possible price for the property and within a reasonable timeframe. Property owners who act proactively will have better chances in selling their assets, while keeping an open line of communication with potential buyers helps them to better understand what they want out of a property.