4 reasons to engage a chess player to guide your CRE strategy

Managing Partner and Senior Sales Associate , ICR Commercial Real Estate
  • Aug. 16, 2021

We navigate an increasingly complex industry. When I engage a professional, I expect them to listen to my requirements and establish a strategy to fulfill those requirements and needs.

That could mean preparing me for potentially different outcomes and / or establishing a strategy that results in exceeding my expectations.

Much like the game of chess, strategy plays a huge factor in my odds of success.

Best practices

I want to work with a professional, whether it may be financial, medical, or technical, who’s prepared to, at times, tell me what I need to hear.

This can mean anticipating what may happen based on the go-forward plan.

Commercial real estate brokers should always be looking at the consequences of the next move. Your broker should clearly see where your opponent’s king will land long before checkmate is called.

Opening moves

There are important steps to consider prior to marketing a commercial real estate property.

As a broker representing a seller, I want to manage the buyer’s due diligence narrative. That means having the seller obtain roof, HVAC, and environmental reports.

If there are deficiencies or problems to be found, it’s my goal to resolve those problems before they create an issue in the sale process.

It can result in a quicker due diligence period and greater sale proceeds.

The middlegame

One of the things that I love about my job is that every negotiation is different; the variables are many.

Where do we want the negotiated contract to settle on price and terms? What’s the negotiating style of the other party and their broker? Is there likely to be competing offers? What is the motivation and urgency for each side and which negotiation strategy do we employ?

At each stage of the process, the goal of a good broker is to internalize these variables, establish the best go-forward plan and prepare the client for, in some cases, several potential outcomes.

Successful endgame

A good broker is always scouting ahead. A good broker often deals with issues and counters attacks without the client even knowing there was a problem.

Ongoing changes in environmental liability, building code, zoning, FINTRAC, financing and legal matters require skilled, experienced representation to navigate the proverbial chess board.

Selecting the appropriate period for contract conditions can be critical. Asking for too long a period could result in a loss of deal, if there are competing offers.

If inadequate time is requested and a back-up offer surfaces, the seller or landlord may not grant an extension, resulting in loss of the deal.

As is true in a game of chess, there are infinite outcomes possible after each move.

Engage a broker who offers you the best opportunity to achieve the win you’re seeking.



Born in small town Saskatchewan, I began my real estate career in Saskatoon at a really early age in 1978. Although I can’t claim to be No 1 in North…

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Born in small town Saskatchewan, I began my real estate career in Saskatoon at a really early age in 1978. Although I can’t claim to be No 1 in North…

Read more




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