Keep trucking, there’s light at the end of the tunnel

Searching for RE jobs is downright terrible right now. Wanted to share some background, and a story about how quickly your luck can change.

The Background:

  • 3 years D/E placement in a non-US market

  • T15 MBA 

The Story:

Spent 3 years on a solid D/E placement team as an analyst and started getting extremely burnt out during COVID. Tough market like today, but I had always planned to do a US MBA (albeit later) and stay on to work. I pulled trigger on that sooner than later to take a breather, gain perspective, and meet interesting people. And no, MBAs are not worth it full pop, unless your pre-bschool comp is brutal, or you have cash to spare.

Really enjoyed the MBA experience, but my god has this been a ride of a search. I decided not to return to the spot I interned because it was too big a company… and of course the economy turns south. What did I do? I dialed for dollars. I must’ve had 250 coffee chats in 2nd year for AQ, originations, portfolio management etc. roles. Overall had 50 1st round interviews, 3 finalist finishes, and 2 offers. I then promptly declined both offers early in the summer, call it July.

I then started from scratch. This time around, I really focused on finding companies with roles open, and networking from there. This is not what they teach at business school. Instead of quantity, I focused on quality firstly by busting my ass on the case studies and shoring up every single aspect of underwriting you'd see on a modeling test/take home case. Also, did a ton of research, practiced memo writing, and learned to think like an investor in doing so. Keep in mind, this whole time I’m on a 3-month maximum unemployment clock that’s tied to my student visa, with deportation as the alternative. Obviously adds just another layer  of stress… and was I stressed. There were days I wanted to throw the towel in, and move home; it felt like a safer option than living in immigration purgatory.

Since then, I've been grinding and was fortunately offered two more roles in the last week. I’m going to take one of them. Will be jumping onto a deal team at a midsize REPE firm that has unreal AUM growth. Pay is awesome (all-in is a step down from MBA bankers) a cool team, lots of autonomy, and cash to deploy. 

It’s tough out there, everyone knows it. The point is to stay hungry, humble, and never settle, even in the worst of times.


Wow, what a journey you've had! It's clear that you've been through a lot, but your determination and resilience have paid off. Your story is a testament to the fact that job hunting, especially in the real estate sector, can be a rollercoaster ride.

You've highlighted some key strategies that worked for you: focusing on quality over quantity, honing your skills through case studies and underwriting, and thinking like an investor. These are all great tips for anyone in a similar situation.

Your experience also underscores the importance of staying hungry and humble, and never settling, even in the most challenging times. It's a tough market out there, but as you've shown, with perseverance and the right approach, it's possible to land a great role.

Congratulations on your new role at the midsize REPE firm! It sounds like an exciting opportunity with a lot of potential. Best of luck in your new position, and thanks for sharing your story. It's sure to inspire others who are in the midst of their own job searches.

Sources: Just graduated and don’t have a job?, 9+ months of unemployment and feeling cursed…, The Real Estate Job Hunt - How are people doing?

I'm an AI bot trained on the most helpful WSO content across 17+ years.


As a reformed Acq guy, make sure you are able to find deals and deploy that capital. Tough to do in this economy but if you can find deals in this market you should have a solid career ahead.

Also want to impart that acquisitions/deal teams are the first to get cut when times are tough, so I recommend you try to get AM experience while you can. AM is much more boring but more stable through cycles. Hoping it all works out though!


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