How to select a real estate development partner

hsabh_bio_photos_bill_newThis article was featured on the Cincinnati Business Courier website.

How to Select a Real Estate Development Partner

September 20,2016

Written By: Bill Chester

Executive Vice President

Bunnell Hill Development


Once your organization has determined that it is time to move forward with a major development project, the heavy lifting begins. Here are some tips to help you find the right development partner, one who can deliver your project on time and on budget:

BusinessParks_12.8.151. Select a partner with a land portfolio that offers choice on land and location
Your partner should have the history, experience and relationships to ensure your own future.
Your partner should have the history, experience and relationships to ensure your own… more

Your ideal partner should have a significant land portfolio with options such as office parks located along major interstates. Wide choice means you will have access to the site visibility necessary to propel your interests forward. This means a large range of attractive parcels of land.

It’s important that your partner is knowledgeable about locating the best parcels for future growth and development. Their ability to select these locations and marry them to your business growth is central to your future.

2. Select a partner with a highly professional management team
A highly-experienced development team can manage every aspect of your development project — including office, industrial, retail, and mixed-use development. Whether your partner is developing a project for your company in a business park or acting as your development partner or fee-developer on a piece of property owned by you, they must know how to get the job done right. Your partner should have deep history of consistently meeting budgets, schedules and investment targets while integrating cutting edge design and best-value quality into every project.

3. Select a partner with deep history
This should be one who has been in the business for decades and understands the industry fluctuations and trends. This means working through economic boom and downturn. A long term player also has a vision that endures across time and circumstance. Your investment will be your business home for decades. Choose a partner who has persevered.

4. Select a partner who can work with you on creative project financing and government incentives
Your partner should be about integrity, efficiency and solid relationships. Your investment will require that you work with an organization that understands your significant expense and is prepared to ensure that you have creative financing options, if needed. A solid partner also has worked with all levels of government to see that you have tax incentive options and are best situated for financial success. This requires leadership that has successfully negotiated significant financial packages.

5. Select a partner who offers a single point of contact
Your partner should offer a single point of contact that commences with your land needs and is stays with you through the development of your future enterprise.

This includes anticipating your business growth through the selection of the premier site, design of your future-focused facility, project financing, construction that goes the distance and property management.

6. Select a partner who offers a full range of services
These should include:

  • Site evaluation
  • Entitlements and approvals
  • Environmental assessment
  • Land acquisition
  • Master planning and design
  • Construction
  • Financing/leasing
  • Marketing
  • Property management

Your optimal partner should be a large landowner and property manager in southwest Ohio that has experience with industrial, commercial and retail clients and offers options and expertise.

This is likely the most important business decision that you will make. Your partner should have the history, experience and relationships to ensure your own future.

Bill Chester is the Executive Vice President for Schueler Group of companies. His 21-year tenure in the market and solid team position him as an expert on diverse development projects. Through Bill’s relationships, clients can access optimal parcels of land and office parks. Please contact Bill at 513-932-6090 or

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