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Crelow Blog

Three New Services; Still One Goal

Posted on November 16, 2015 by Jim Simpson

Crelow CEO Jim Simpson

Crelow has only been in business for about 10 months but we’re excited to introduce three new services we believe will revolutionize the way commercial real estate is done. All three of these new services are available right now in both of our current markets, Minneapolis/St. Paul and Denver.

Though much of what we do and how we do it has been enhanced with the release of these new services, the inspiration behind Crelow itself is unchanged. From the very first whiteboard session more than two years ago, Crelow has been designed from scratch with just one goal in mind:

Put tenants in control and help them find the perfect fit in their next office.

Crelow 1.0 did that by offering tenants the industry’s first true demand-driven marketplace for office space. Tenants simply describe the location, size, vibe and amenities they are looking for in an office space, indicate a budget preference, and post an anonymous Bid Request to the Crelow Deal Board™ where all landlords and landlord reps in the market can see it.

Tenants have raved about the control and convenience the Bid Requester™ process offers them. They especially like the visual interface of Crelow, the plain English terminology it uses, and how they can describe exactly what they need in an office space to help them attract and retain the right people.

However, there were three limitations with Crelow 1.0 that nagged at us from the beginning:

  • We always wished there was a mechanism for tenants to share in the commission savings they create by dealing direct with landlords. The landlord was planning to spend that money anyway. Wouldn’t it be great if there was a way for landlords to reward tenants for taking the reins?
  • On the flip side, we heard from a number of tenants who would rather let someone else “drive.” As simple as the Bid Requester process is, not everyone has the time to manage their own search for office space — or wants to.
  • Finally, we’ve wanted to make the Crelow platform a win, win, win for everyone in the CRE industry, not just those on the landlord side of the business.

I’m delighted to note that Crelow 2.0 makes all three of these things possible. Though the core features of Crelow are still there, we’ve found a way to address all three limitations at one time:

Crebates™ allow tenants to share in the savings they create

Landlords and landlord reps can now make their bids stand out and compete for a tenant’s business by offering a Crebate tenant cash incentive. A Crebate is simply a percentage of the total gross rent that would otherwise go to a tenant rep. It’s up to the landlord and their rep to decide how big of a Crebate to offer, anywhere from 0% to infinity, and it’s paid to the tenant by the landlord after lease signing. Crelow then collects a small portion of the Crebate from the tenant as a Marketplace Use Fee. Everything flows through a third-party intermediary so it’s all “above the table.” Nothing like this has ever existed before and we can’t wait to see it in action.

Rep Matcher™ helps tenants find a representative

For tenants who would prefer to work with a rep, Crelow now matches tenants with tenant reps through a process unlike anything you’ve ever seen. There are already dozens of tenant reps from Minneapolis/St. Paul and Denver in our Rep Matcher database and tenants will soon be requesting matches. It’s automatic, the reps have complete freedom to work with tenants however they choose (there’s no requirement that they use the Crelow Deal Board) and the reps are able to accept or decline any tenant match that comes their way. There are no strings attached whatsoever and it doesn’t cost anyone a dime. Our sole motivation is to help tenants find great office space. If we can do that by matching them with great tenant reps, we’re happy to do it.

Tenant reps can now submit their own Bid Requests™

You read that right. Crelow, the CRE tech upstart that gave tenants a way to work directly with landlords, now invites tenant reps to use our Bid Requester to post tenant requirements on the Crelow Deal Board for the entire market to see. We even make it easy for a tenant rep to name the fee they wish to earn on the deal – Crelow doesn’t charge a dime from this service. Here again, our motivation is simple. If we can help tenants find great office space by allowing tenant reps to use our Deal Board, too, we’re all for it. Given that most tenant reps also wear landlord rep hats on a regular basis, we’re confident we’ll be rewarded in the end.

Long story short (too late!), we’ve taken the original Crelow service, added a revolutionary cash incentive opportunity for tenants who deal direct, a free rep matching service for tenants who would rather not, and opened up the entire platform for tenant reps to use however they want. I’d say that’s a pretty successful software release. For an encore, we’ll be taking the Crelow 2.0 show on the road to other U.S. cities very soon. I’ll be back to tell you all about it.

Jim Simpson is the Founder and CEO of Crelow.

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