5 for Friday with Walt Arnold, Leasing Product Council Co-Chair

June has been designated as leasing month here at SVN, and to cap it off, this Friday we have a special Five for Friday double header, as we interview both co-chairs of SVN’s Leasing Product Council.


Walt Arnold, CCIM, SIOR

Walt Arnold, CCIM, SIOR, is managing director at SVN | Walt Arnold Commercial Brokerage, Inc., in Albuquerque, New Mexico. There, he specializes in the office market.


What advice would you provide to an aspiring advisor who is new to the industry?

My advice would be to soak up as much information as possible in the quickest amount of time. Literally, be a sponge and absorb everything. At SVN, S4G is an excellent tool to get started in the commercial real estate industry. Read as many periodicals (for example, the CCIM magazine and the SIOR magazine) as  you can.  Additionally, avail yourself of any other magazine, book, blog or video where you can learn about commercial real estate, and specifically the area of commercial real estate you are interested in. Another strategy is to learn from others who have been in the industry for long time, that is, seek out a mentor who will help you learn and understand the process of leasing or sales. Your mentor’s knowledge and experience will help you shrink the learning curve and create a faster path to success.


What does the SVN Difference mean to you?

The SVN Difference for me is a cultural of collaboration and professionalism created through our Advisors and our Core Covenants. Sharing our fees 50-50 with the brokerage community encourages brokers to bring their buyers and tenants to our properties, which in turn allows our owners and landlords the best opportunity to sell or lease at the highest price and achieve the best deal for them.


What learning tools (book, blog, website, etc.) would you recommend to your colleagues to further their knowledge and enhance their careers?

There are several ways you can learn more. Here are a few suggestions:

  • Complete the S4G modules, review the SVN dashboard and look for opportunities to learn within the dashboard.
  • Join a Product Council and get involved in a specialty area of commercial real estate.
  • Get involved in the local CCIM chapter in the local commercial real estate board.
  • Look for newsfeeds, magazines, websites and blogs that are geared commercial real estate.


What inspired you to open an SVN franchise? Or, why did you join SVN?

I had arrived at a point in my career where I felt it was important to be part of a larger organization. I was introduced to SVN and right from beginning, I found that it was a good fit for me. The Core Covenants and the SVN Difference resonated with me and I embraced it and have enjoyed every moment since I joined the company. The corporate officers, staff and Advisors throughout the company are exceptional.


List a fun fact to share about yourself – something that people may not know and that they may be surprised to find out.

I played football and baseball at the University of New Mexico. I went on to play professional football in the NFL for eight years as a tight end, mostly with the Los Angeles Rams and the Kansas City Chiefs.

Interested in pursuing a career in commercial real estate leasing? Learn more at SVN’s Leasing page.

Leasing Your Way to Success

Why leasing?

Commercial real estate is a multi-faceted business, and has several distinct income streams. There’s sales and management, and there is also leasing. The leasing process is a great way to start to build your CRE business and learn the nuts and bolts of commercial real estate.

Leasing is the building block of investment properties

Learning how the lease affects the property’s financial picture, through the base rent and annual rent increases, the term of the lease, renewal options, operating costs pass-throughs, signage rights, expansion options, termination rights, parking requirements and numerous other property rights that affect the value, purchase and sale of a property.

Leasing boosts careers

Leasing provides a source of commission revenue for the “new to business broker” and a way to build lasting business through relationships with companies and tenants. Many successful brokers spend their entire career in leasing. And why not? The leasing market is in a constant state of movement—leases expire every three to five years on average, which creates opportunity in the market to work with landlords to lease space, or engaging in tenant representation.

City office buildings for lease created in 3D.See more Real Estate concepts here:

Leasing property creates need for signage and branding.

Every property for lease requires signage. Signs can help generate leads, showings at the property, and even tenant representation opportunities. On top of this, the branding afforded from leasing creates a presence in the market, which then can lead to other leasing opportunities, along with sales and management opportunities.

Leasing creates market experts

Strong knowledge of the leasing market creates outstanding market knowledge that establishes the broker as a market expert.

Remember this: Not only is leasing a cornerstone of the commercial real estate business, it is also profitable.

June is leasing month at SVN, and we thank Walt Arnold, CCIM, SIOR, Managing Director at SVN Walt Arnold Commercial Brokerage, Inc. for writing this post. Walt is co-chair, along with Neil Johnson, of  SVN’s Leasing Product Council. Find out more about Walt by clicking here, and this coming Friday, June 28, when he will be featured on Five for Friday.


Office Spotlight: SVN/Walt Arnold Commerical Brokerage, Inc. in Albuquerque, NM

This week, we turn the spotlight on SVN/Walt Arnold Commercial Brokerage, Inc. with offices in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

Walt Arnold | Managing Director | SVN/Walt Arnold Commercial Brokerage, Inc.
Walt Arnold | Managing Director | SVN/Walt Arnold Commercial Brokerage, Inc.

1. What has been your strategy for growing your firm and also your market share?
The strategy has been to create an environment for brokers to have the tools to compete, fulfill and win business, employing brokers and staff that are committed to showing up and working hard, hiring quality brokers that fit into the culture of Sperry Van Ness, whether new to the business, mid-career or established veterans. And to have fun in the process, realizing that so much of our careers and life is about the journey. Sperry Van Ness has provided an outstanding platform to recruit high quality individuals to SVN/WACB, Inc. and the Sperry Van Ness story has been instrumental in growing my company and market share.

2. What are some of the unique activities you do to motivate your team? 
Almost every Monday is a “Lunch and Learn” and these sessions encompass not only title underwriters, attorneys, contractors, bankers and many other businesses associated with CRE, but we also work on sales skills and other activities that help us all grow in the CRE business. A recent series of Mondays involved going through Terri Sjodin’s tape series title, Small Message, Big Impact, which was about creating an elevator speech. We capped it of by bringing in a local expert on the subject and everyone developed a 30 seconds elevator pitch and presented it. It was a great exercise for everyone regardless of the years of experience.  We also schedule events (baseball games, football tailgate, bowling, billiards, non-profit events, etc.) outside the office quarterly to get out and spend some time together.

 3. What’s been the biggest challenge in running your business in the last few years?
Obviously on of the biggest challenges has been to manage cash flow the past several years, which hopefully is starting to improve as we come out of the pit of recession. Another is our goal of continuing to create an environment that’s a great place to work. I mention this as a challenge because it has to be top of mind and takes some detailed effort and energy to continue to improve and to ask how we can do things better for our clients, customers and each other.

SVN/Walt Arnold Commercial Brokerage, Inc. Staff at Halloween
SVN/Walt Arnold Commercial Brokerage, Inc. Staff at Halloween

4. How many Advisors/Staff did you have when you joined SVN? How many (in total) do you have now? 
When I started with Sperry Van Ness 7 years ago, I had an assistant, a property manager and one broker. Currently now in the office are 8 brokers, a property manager, a property management accountant, a marketing director, and 3 part-time support staff in property management, brokerage and accounting.

Walt Arnold, CCIM, SIOR
Managing Director
SVN/Walt Arnold Commercial Brokerage, Inc.
Albuquerque, New Mexico

*All Sperry Van Ness® offices are independently owned and operated.