Approached about billboards....best way to handle


#1

We have a out of home advertising company that was approached by someone who found us on google…they need 6 boards for a 3 month time period…we don’t have any boards…never had to deal with a request…just trying to figure out the best way to obtain them and then turn around and lease them.


#2

if you don’t have the space. find somebody who does and broker the deal.


#3

Bruce is right – you can’t build a billboard for a three-month deal, so you should try and broker it. That would entail finding billboards that fit their needs, and having the billboard company pay you a commission or, if you are more of a risk-taker, you could rent the signs and then sublease them to this advertiser, first making sure that the billboard company allows subleasing.

If you want to get into the billboard business in earnest, and build your own signs, I would recommend you buy, read, and take action on the new home-study course that is coming out in the next few days, here on the site.


#4

Thanks for the replies…another couple of questions…yeah I have had someone offer me 15%…is this standard? I was actually thinking of going with the sublease…also what are the normal terms of payment for billboards?


#5

15% is pretty standard. A normal agency commission is 16.66%, but that’s close enough.

Billboards are normally billed in one of two ways: 1) per month or 2) per 4 weeks (so there are basically 13 months in a year under this system). The rent is normally due in the month of service, but that will be explained in the lease agreement – everybody varies on when rent is due.

If you go with a sublease, some critical things to consider are: 1) does the company allow a sublease? 2) is the ad content objectionable? [a billboard company may block some political ads, xxx bookstores, etc.] 3) what happens if you don’t get paid? [make sure the advertiser is solvent, and has the ability and intent to pay].


#6

so its not unreasonable to ask for full payment upon installation…should i ask for a deposit to hold the boards…


#7

It is not normal industry practice to pay for signs in advance. That’s just a risk you normally run, that you have mitigated by making sure that the client is solvent. But even then, it is always a risk. That being said, if you can get the full amount up front – then my all means do it.

As a deposit, you might ask for the first and last month’s rent. That would not be unreasonable – that’s what most other leases require. I have never heard of a “deposit” in billboard rent. A deposit, by definition, is something you give back at the end if the property is returned in O.K. condition – so it really doesn’t apply here.