How to Inspect Commercial Properties

Hi – this is John. I’m here on the site of a building we’re going to go ahead and do an inspection.

I’m here with Peter – one of the recent graduates from the program Field Rep 101. And I’m going to today just walk through the property. We’re not going to do everything. But this is just to give you an idea of some of the things that’s involved in the inspection of a commercial property.

So, right now I’ve got my clipboard and camera, pen. And I also printed out the form. Sometimes with all the electronic means of doing inspections nowadays.. people just kinda ignore that. I still think that it’s really worth it. Just because you can go ahead take notes. You can also ahead of time jot down some of the requirements. Different types of properties will have different things that the lender will want you to check. One of the things I want to do right away is to take a picture of the signage. It’s a great marking point or marker shot – to basically get things oriented.

Okay, so once we get started we’ll take some basic shots. One of the things I typically do after the signage is take what’s called a broadview or glamour shot. Just basically this sample of how the property looks from an overall perspective. Other things we want to do is street shots which basically include as much as you can of neighboring properties.

Other than the street views is we take pictures of the signage, if there’s any and after which the other main thing is to go ahead and go into the different units In this case we’re conducting this almost as what’s considered a “no contact” or “exterior only”. The property manager’s elected to allow me to simply go to the property myself. And in other situations sometimes you’ll be sent out on assignments where basically the lender doesn’t want you to contact anyone for various reasons. So, in this case we’re going to go ahead and just go.. into some of the individual units and get some photos.

Right now we’re inside the unit of a donut shop. I just spoke with the manager on-site Sometimes it happens where the discussion is that they feel either uncomfortable or they’re not sure what you’re doing there, or something like that. Again, typically this is not an issue with having the actual property manager for this site to walk you through it. But other times you’re better off saying thank and just carrying on and stuff. It’s usually not worth it. I did take a shot of the interior.

And that’s pretty much all that the lenders are looking for. They just want to see generally how the property looks. So, that’s pretty much it. We’ve covered two of the three interiors that were the requirements for this particular inspection. And that pretty much will fulfill our requirements. We’ll look at one more unit. They have an upstairs, and we’ll probably go ahead and do that. Other than that we’ll take more shots of the exterior and more shots of the overall property itself.

So, just wanted to basically give a general description of what we do for these inspections of commercial properties for retail or office buildings. Pretty much done the same way. The things that’s usually more intensive are the apartments or multi-family properties. Those are usually more where they typically will involve meeting with a property manager going through the units. Never mind things like.

HUD or low-income housing. Those kinds are even more particular. But again just wanted to give a brief intro and what’s involved with a general commercial property inspection.