Real estate management careers are attractive to people wanting to pursue work in the real estate industry but uncomfortable being an agent or working in corporate real estate. Within real estate management, you can still make a difference in others’ lives, which is part of what draws people to the industry. You also still have the opportunity to work in a field where you can often advance largely on the merit of your work. If you’re considering a career in real estate management, here’s what you need to know to decide if it’s right for you.
What is real estate management?
Real estate management refers to the job of running a real estate entity — usually either a commercial or residential building but sometimes it could also include a commercial shopping center or a building project. As a real estate manager, you could be the person who collects rent, schedules maintenance or even leases space in the building. Real estate managers wear many hats so often you’ll have involvement in marketing, balancing budgets, hiring a team to help you, managing employees, coordinating with vendors and, of course, interfacing with tenants.
What skills do you need for a real estate management career?
In order to excel at a real estate management career, you’ll need to be a “Swiss Army Knife” of sorts. Meaning, you’ll have to be proficient at tasks in several different categories.
1. Basic accounting skills
You’ll have to know how to create and follow a business budget. You might be in charge of spending money on marketing, so in this case, you’d have to be able to show your return on investment. If you’re helping a corporation or individual with asset management you’ll also have to know about financing options and how to prove a return on any real estate investments your clients make.
2. Managing a property
As a real estate manager, you might be responsible for ensuring the actual property is maintained, well-staffed and insured. You’ll need the people skills necessary to hire employees and oversee a team. You’ll also need the administrative skills to stay organized, file paperwork and pay bills on time.
3. Marketing and sales
Your role as a real estate manager will most likely include sales and promoting your property. This could include advertising when you have space available, showing the property, negotiating contracts and even possibly establishing what the rent will be on each unit. If you’re not a comfortable salesperson or aren’t familiar with the latest marketing best practices, you might consider some real estate courses that can train you in these areas.
What job titles do real estate managers go by?
Once you start looking into real estate management careers you’ll start to see several jobs that share similar duties and responsibilities to a real estate manager but have different titles. Real estate management encompasses jobs like:
- Property manager
- Real estate portfolio manager
- Asset manager
- Real estate portfolio analyst
- Real estate coordinator
- Real estate director
- Real estate investment analyst
- Land acquisition director
- Real estate transactions coordinator
- Real estate distribution analyst
When you’re on the job hunt, make sure you look for jobs with keywords similar to these. All because a job doesn’t directly say “real estate management” doesn’t mean you won’t have the skills to succeed in it. It’s important to evaluate the job description to match that with your skills instead of relying only on the name.
How can you find real estate management careers?
You can search for real estate careers in a number of ways.
1. Real estate specific job boards
Look through job listings on real estate job boards that are specific to your niche. Here are a few places to start:
2. General job boards
If you can’t find anything on specific job boards, widen your search to include places like Indeed, Glassdoor, LinkedIn, or ZipRecruiter. Create a profile on each site and upload your resume so you can easily apply for jobs that look like matches.
3. Through your network
Let everyone know you’re searching for a job as a real estate manager. Don’t underestimate the power of your mom’s, friend’s, nephew’s, neighbor. Sometimes the best career opportunities come from word-of-mouth. Here are some ideas for how you can bring the topic up with your friends and family.
- Make a social media post. You don’t have to tell your life story, but just let people know you’re looking to start a new career and ask if they have any leads or connections to people who have similar careers.
- Go on informational interviews. If there are people within your network who work in real estate, ask to set up an informational interview where you can get to know some details about their jobs. Don’t ask them for a job, but ask them what they would do if they were job hunting in your market. They’ll remember that you’re looking for a job and be able to recommend you if something within their network pops up.
- Bring it up in conversation with friends. Don’t be embarrassed to reveal you’re on the job hunt and want advice. Your friends may have professional contacts you don’t know about who could help you.
Take your first step: Get started with a real estate license
Now that you know more about what real estate management careers entail, it’s time to take the first step toward your new career — getting licensed. Every state has different regulations about what classes you’ll need to get your license, so research your state’s requirements and then get started on your dream career!