Cost savings for both landlords and tenants
A new on-line property platform which connects business owners and other commercial, industrial and retail tenants with available premises is set to disrupt the property market.
‘Airspace’ is a simple, digital search functionality for a new office, co-working space, warehouse, retail shop, factory, storage space or showroom, says founder and MD, Peter Collins, who has over 20 years of experience in the commercial property industry.
“Extremely user-friendly, easy to navigate, and based on a subscriber format with no commissions payable, it empowers companies to manage dynamic property needs in a competitive and constantly evolving economic environment.
“It’s a smart way to market or access space to let. Property owners simply subscribe to upload their space onto the Airspace platform, which enables them to receive enquiries directly to their mobile devices via Whatsapp or email. There are no agency commissions for subscribers, so landlords are able to offer better rental deals to tenants inquiring on the platform, while property managers benefit from significantly reduced marketing costs as well as direct access to the business market via the latest big data management and digital marketing strategies. Potential tenants in turn, can freely search for available space.”
Collins says the subscriber format offers economies of scale for landlords so the more space you load the cheaper it is. “For the property owner there’s a basic cost of 99c per square metre for office and retail space, and 50c per square metre for industrial space to let, and for sales, a success fee of 1% of the purchase price, which represents a huge saving in marketing costs. They can manage the relationship with prospective tenants or buyers directly via the platform.
“In the current challenging trading conditions, it’s ideal for owner-occupiers downsizing their premises who wish to sub-let portions of their properties, and for landlords who wish to lower their vacancy levels.”
For businesses and entrepreneurs seeking space, search criteria are matched with the database of available properties providing accurate and relevant options for comparison, with a map search feature to allows tenants to find available options in a specific area, or similar properties.
Here’s how it works: Subscribers upload their vacancies directly onto the platform, providing property details and photos. Once a tenant selects a property to view, the subscriber is notified and takes it up from there.
Says Collins: “From a transparency perspective, the tenant provides feedback and ratings of their experience with the subscriber, rating criteria such as efficiency of communication, accuracy and quality of information provided, while subscribers rate their experience with tenants on criteria such as punctuality for viewings, efficiency of communication and the like. This promotes an environment of accountability where all parties act with integrity and efficiency.”
Concludes Collins: “Initially launched in Johannesburg and Cape Town, Airspace will be rolled out nationally, with Pretoria and Durban in the pipeline during the course of the year (2020) and then internationally in 2021.
“We will also be integrating additional service offerings into the app such as space calculators, tenant installation works, legal services, tenant re-location services, IT service providers and mortgage origination. This will provide even greater value for users.
“We are also able to offer tenant representation advisory, investment properties and corporate services as value added support for users.
“Airspace ushers in a new way of being in the commercial property space founded on principles of respect, tolerance, connection and convenience.”