Forging Expertise with dedication



Iron Real Estate understands that success is driven from hard work, dedication and a strategic approach.

With specialized knowledge in the financial sector stemming from a history in wealth management and credit analysis, Founder Clay Rankin utilizes his dynamic financial insight to benefit the landlords and tenants he represents.

Whatever the challenge, Iron Real Estate pledges a superior level of dedication to each client regardless of market conditions.

Developers, institutions and individual property owners work with Iron Real Estate to maximize the value of their real estate. National and local retailers work with Iron Real Estate to gain greater presence in the local market. How will you work with Iron?


Landlord Representation

Iron Real Estate understands that a retail property only maximizes its income potential when it’s leased, which is why that remains its priority. More than just getting the word out – Iron Real Estate prides itself in re-establishing the human component with prospective tenants that is so vital to success in commercial leasing. Iron Real Estate makes it their business to get to know their client and build a lasting relationship based upon honest, open communications and exceeding client expectations.

The process:

Iron will develop a comprehensive marketing plan with the Landlord to maximize income to the property. This pro-active plan will be tailored to provide multiple levels of service and communication to the landlord to produce exceptional, long-lasting working relationships and leasing/sales results.

Iron will understand the intricacies of the property, prior to leasing efforts, by engaging the landlord in a dialogue which will cover:

  • Review of the property pro-forma, if available
  • Discussion of all past and present leasing efforts
  • Market rental comparables to establish realistic expectations and leasing goals
  • The establishment of a proposed rental range for property’s available spaces/land
  • Understanding of the Landlord’s desirability to provide any rental concessions to appropriate prospects
  • Iron will then undertake a pro-active approach to market property by:
  • Updating and improving upon any old marketing flyers and materials (property pictures, demographics, aerials, traffic counts, site plans, etc.)
  • Providing adequate signage for the vacant spaces
  • Identifying market surplus/deficiency of services and retailers
  • Canvassing immediate market and surrounding markets with similar demographics to establish market knowledge and comparable rental rates
  • Identifying potential retail categories and prospective prospects
  • Identifying potential re-location opportunities
  • Sending e-blasts to both the brokerage and retail corporate communities
  • Cold-calling prospective national and local tenants
  • Cross Marketing with existing retail portfolio tenants
  • Marketing shopping centers at ICSC (International Council of Shopping Centers) functions
  • Communication will be provided on a case-by-case basis tailored to landlords preferences:
  • Updates to leasing efforts via E-mail, telephone and in-person meetings
  • Written leasing reports outlining the progress of leasing activity


Iron Real Estate seeks to find the right space for each client. Beyond finding the right location – Iron Real Estate takes pride in first figuring out what right is. Throughout the process, Iron Real Estate has taken the time to thoroughly get to know the client’s business inside and out and learn what is right for them and the future of their company. As each client is unique, so too are the demographics, traffic counts, site access requirements in addition to numerous other factors critical to the success of their business . Iron makes it a point to analyze and understand all of them. With the right space within grasp, Iron Real Estate works to secure the best deal and terms for their clients.

The process:

Iron Real Estate will provide and meet its client’s objectives by providing the necessary due diligence and services necessary to obtain desired expansion plans over a realistic and defined period of time.

  • Discussion of client’s business and financing
  • Due diligence of target market and sites
  • Market analysis including proximity to competition, demographics, traffic counts, market surplus/deficiency of tenant’s service, etc.
  • Property analysis including site access, visibility, co-tenancy, rental rates, etc.
  • Compilation of potential sites via various efforts
  • Market canvassing, sign calling, e-blasts to brokers and landlords
  • Presentation and site drive of potential sites to client
  • Lease negotiations to procure the best possible terms on client’s behalf
  • Follow-up communication with tenant after lease negotiation



Sometimes a missed opportunity can haunt a client for years. Other times, the best investment is the one they don’t make. Iron Real Estate exclusively represents both buyers and sellers and leverages their exclusive knowledge of the financial sector to help clients make the best investment possible – at the optimal time.

The process:

  • Iron will represent both institutional and individual property owners looking to purchase or sell property.
  • Specific consideration and analysis will be given based upon the Client’s financial budget and desired target market and property type.
  • Through analysis of the property’s rent roll, net operating income analysis and extrapolation will be offered in conjunction with analysis of comparable listing market sale prices to determine the desirability of the potential investment.
  • Assistance for the implementation of any necessary tax deferral strategies from both in-house and external resources.


Frank Chiovari

Manager/Owner, DFA Enterprises, LLC. writes:

“Clay Rankin was the leasing professional for my strip center located at 1330 N. Lewis in Waukegan, IL. Clay’s communication with me throughout the leasing assignment was exceptional as he always provided leasing updates and lists of new prospects that he had uncovered as potential fits for my property. By successfully filling my center’s remaining vacancy and improving its cash flow, Clay’s leasing efforts were integral towards maximizing the sale value of the property.

If you’re looking for a leasing agent with a “go-getter” type mentality, I would recommended Clay’s services as he will drum up fresh leasing ideas and express those plans to you on a continual basis. My experience with Clay was terrific and I would be happy refer his services to other property owners.”

Philip S.Marrone

President, Philip-Rae Corporation writes:

“Over the past several years, Clay Rankin has acted as the leasing agent on a number of our properties. He has a very pro-active leasing approach and pursues an aggressive plan of cold calling and canvassing to produce new leads. I also appreciate that he is continually updating me on both the positive and negative activity at the various centers and his ongoing plans to achieve the goals we have set.

I enjoy working with Clay and his dedications and communications will be an asset to any property owner.”

About Us

Company Profile

Iron Real Estate is a commercial real estate firm specializing in the retail sector including new construction and 2nd generation centers. Properties include Grocery Anchored Centers, Power Centers, Lifestyle Centers, Neighborhood Centers, Strip Centers, Specialty Centers, as well as available land.

Iron Real Estate was founded on the principal of servicing its clients with the spirited determination to provide pro-active and tailored levels of service and communication. This foundation ultimately produces exceptional long-lasting working relationships for accelerated leasing/sales results.

Developers, institutions and individual property owners work with Iron Real Estate to maximize the value of their real estate. National and local retailers work with Iron Real Estate to gain greater presence in the local market.

Iron Real Estate pledges an unbreakable level of commitment to each client, regardless of difficult or prosperous market conditions.

Clay Rankin, Jr.

Beginning his career in 2002, Clay spent three years in the Private Wealth Management business working for Stein Roe Investment Counsel and quickly advanced to the position of Associate Vice-President. At Stein Roe, Clay was responsible for reviewing and analyzing prospect and client holdings and financial statements to construct an analysis that included in-depth portfolio review, risk mitigation strategies and cash-flow analysis.

In 2005, after Stein Roe Investment Counsel was acquired by Amvescap PLC, Clay joined Property Assessment Advisors as a Credit Analyst. Evaluating the credit worthiness of prospective tenants and working on behalf of landlords/property owners, Clay scrutinized proposed lease structures as well as individual and public/private company financial statements and credit histories to provide risk mitigation options.

Clay most recently joined Edgemark Commercial Real Estate Services, LLC in 2006 where he worked in sales, specializing on the lease/sale of retail commercial real estate.

The financial and real estate industries have given Clay experience that is now instrumental in Iron Real Estate’s inherent ability to utilize vital financial expertise during the entire process of both landlord and tenant representation.


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Contact Info

Iron Real Estate, LLC

655 Rockland Rd. Ste. 5, Lake Bluff, IL 60044

Direct: (773) 844-2830