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Commercial Real Estate Investing


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Table of Contents

Preface xi Acknowledgments xiii Notes on Reading This Book xv Introduction xvii CHAPTER 1 Just What Is Commercial Real Estate? 1 CHAPTER 2 People versus Contracts 5 CHAPTER 3 Why Invest in Commercial Real Estate? 11 Lease Duration 11 Assignment of Lease 15 The Tenants Pay the Outgoings 17 Tenants Earn Their Income on Your Premises 18 Landlord Pays for Improvements to Commercial Premises 21 Certainty of Collecting Rent 22 Upward-Only Rent Reviews 24 Government Interference 25 Management Overhead 27 CHAPTER 4 The Downside of Commercial Real Estate 29 Much More Difficult to Acquire Commercial Tenants 29 Banks Will Lend a Smaller Proportion of a Commercial Property 30 CHAPTER 5 The True Value of Real Estate 33 CHAPTER 6 How to Overcome the Disadvantages of Commercial Real Estate 41 CHAPTER 7 How to Attract a Tenant 45 Who Wants to Run a Funeral Business? 45 Finding a Tenant for a Warehouse in an Oversupplied Market 50 The Power of the Internet 55 Many Prospective Tenants Know Your Building 56 Engage a Real Estate Firm or Property Management Company to Find a Tenant 59 Wait for (or Cause) a Zone Change 60 Split a Single Tenancy into Multiple Tenancies 62 Consolidate Multiple Tenancies into One 64 The Ultimate Way to Attract a Tenant 66 CHAPTER 8 How to Increase Rental Income (and hence the Capital Value) 71 Helipads 72 Cell Phone Towers 73 More Rooftop Antics 74 Naming Rights 76 Air Space 77 Parking 81 The Humble Webcam 89 Interior Remodel 93 The Triple Win of Alarm Systems 100 Rent Reviews to Market 101 CHAPTER 9 What Were the Disadvantages of Commercial Real Estate? 103 CHAPTER 10 Finding Commercial Real Estate 107 Newspaper Advertisements 107 Real Estate Firms 112 The Internet 114 Keeping Your Eyes Peeled 116 Networking 118 Word of Mouth 118 Helping Other People 124 The 100:10:3:1 Rule 126 Summary 130 CHAPTER 11 Analyzing Deals 131 Due Diligence 132 Four Questions to Ask about Any Commercial Property 142 Return on Investment 144 CHAPTER 12 Negotiating Commercial Real Estate Deals 155 The Uncooperative Seller 156 Other Negotiations 159 CHAPTER 13 Financing Commercial Real Estate 163 Proposal for Finance 166 Summary Paragraph 171 General Description of Property Offered as Collateral 174 Property Portfolio Statistics and Cash Flows 176 Statement of Assets and Liabilities 177 What to Include in the Appendix 178 How to Use the Proposal for Finance 179 Umbrella Loans 182 CHAPTER 14 Structuring Commercial Real Estate Ownership 183 CHAPTER 15 Managing Commercial Real Estate 187 Tenant Selection 188 Rule Enforcement 189 Rent Reviews 190 How to Get a Tradesman to Do Your Work First 190 Accounting 193 Summary 193 CHAPTER 16 How to Beat the Average 195 Geography 196 Zone Changes 199 Proximity to Views 200 The Center of Town 200 High Technology 201 Leasing and Management Tactics to Beat the Average 202 Combining All Methods of Beating the Average 202 CHAPTER 17 Raw Land 205 Best Choice Properties 208 Spring Mountain Ski Ranch 211 The Benefit of Having Great Partners 214 Getting Back to Commercial Real Estate Investing 216 CHAPTER 18 Extraordinarily Odd Commercial Deals 217 Oil in Them Thar Hills 219 Marine Farms 222 CHAPTER 19 Property Ventures Limited 225 Five Mile 230 CHAPTER 20 Never Sell 233 CHAPTER 21 Thirteen Golden Rules of Commercial Real Estate Investment 239 Golden Rule 1: Risk Is Equal to Yield 239 Golden Rule 2: Ensure Safety of Principal 240 Golden Rule 3: Control Your Liabilities 240 Golden Rule 4: Add Value to a Deal 241 Golden Rule 5: A Broker or Agent Must Bring Something to the Deal 242 Golden Rule 6: Real Estate Is a Long-Term Investment 243 Golden Rule 7: The Number of Voting Partners Is Directly Proportional to the Failure of the Project 244 Golden Rule 8: You Are Going to Be in a Lawsuit 244 Golden Rule 9: It Only Takes One Deal to Go Broke 245 Golden Rule 10: It Only Takes One Deal to Make a Million Dollars 245 Golden Rule 11: The Value of a Property Is Limited by the Tenant?s Ability to Pay Rent 246 Golden Rule 12: Appreciation and Inflation Are Compounded Annually 246 Golden Rule 13: You Cannot Give Kindness Away?It Is Always Returned 247 CHAPTER 22 Investing Abroad 249 CHAPTER 23 Live Life to the Fullest 261 About the Author 269 Appendix: Resources 271 Index 281

About the Author

Dolf de Roos is a New York Times and Wall Street Journal bestselling author and prolific real estate investor. He is the Chairman of Property Ventures Ltd, an innovative publicly-held property investment company with holdings ranging from office towers to vineyards, and a founding director of Best Choice Properties. His other real estate titles include Real Estate Riches, The Insider's Guide to Real Estate Investing Loopholes, The Insider's Guide to Making Money in Real Estate, The Insider's Guide to Tax-Free Real Estate Investments (all from Wiley), and 101 Ways to Massively Increase the Value of Your Real Estate without Spending Much Money, from Timelife Direct. For more information, visit

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