Advice for a REIT Analyst Looking to Jump Head-First Into an Investment Sales Brokerage

Whats up guys. Just moved 3500 miles away from home to LA and was recently laid off my analyst gig at a top REIT - kinda fucked at the moment. I'm very seriously considering saying fuck it all and jumping into investment sales head-first as a broker. I've chatted with a few of the major players (think JLL, CBRE, Eastdil, M&M) and heard something different from pretty much all of them. Some are 100% commission cold-calling sweat shops (ahem M&M) and some are 100% salary analyst positions supporting the brokers. I think ideally I'm looking for a hybrid between the two (minimum salary + fees), where I'm able to finish up my license and get some experience on the transaction side without starving for two years - I guess trying to limit my downside while still having a defined track towards crushing as a broker (I know). When I mention this to any of the teams at shops like M&M they tell me to go fuck myself, though most of the teams at larger institutional brokerage firms are the opposite with almost exclusively salary only for the junior guys.

I've been cold calling top brokers at large firms asking similar questions, but structure seems to vary wildly even within each firm from team to team. Are there any firms/opportunities I should be targeting? Am I retarded for trying to find this opportunity that may or may not exist? Is it truly as clear cut as "jump in" or "pussy-foot around jumping in for a few more years and delay the inevitable"?

Interested to hear some feedback. Feel free to DM me also.

Comments (11)

Most Helpful
Nov 13, 2019

I am sorry for the short nature of my reply but my entire fucking previous post was deleted after hitting submit due to some error message from WSO.

Anyways if you are a young person with no significant network looking to make it in IS forget about the commission early on. The best path is to get a salaried position on a good team assisting those brokers, if you have the chops they will ask you to go commission and join the production team. How can you be an effective broker if you don't know how to be a broker? If you don't know how to be a broker why do you think having your income tied to commissions is a good idea?

By "giving up" the idea of having a commission portion of your salary as a new analyst you are giving away ice in the winter. You will not produce a deal in your first 12 months of IS, guaranteed. If you were part of a team that split the commission you would get an insignificant portion anyways.

I think you will be hard pressed to get an opinion here that jumping into a commissioned IS position as a young person with no network in a new city will set you up for success. Take the time to learn that side of the business and get paid while you ingratiate yourself to the team and earn a spot as a producer on a good team.

    • 5
Nov 13, 2019

I would avoid the commission only roles in your situation (unemployment). You could easily go a year without making a dollar.

    • 2
Nov 13, 2019

I'm just going to pat you and myself on the back for these back to back posts separated by a minute that say (quoting mine):

You will not produce a deal in your first 12 months of IS

    • 2
Nov 13, 2019

fist bump

    • 1
Nov 13, 2019

Why were you laid off?

    • 3
Nov 13, 2019

I've spoken in the past about M&M because I'm currently here, in your first year you could be the best/smartest/most outgoing etc. broker in the room, hardest worker, top cold caller, set 10 meetings a week but you just may not close anything or even sniff a deal because that first year is fairly lucky and team dependent, you could get a listing or multiple but there's still a long time until payday and even if you do close a deal that first check still may not be enough to live on in LA. I think M&M is a good incubator if you're trying to cut your teeth and have either funds saved or have someone to support you for 1-2 years. I'm in LA at M&M, shoot me a PM if you have questions.

    • 1
Nov 13, 2019

I believe shops like CBRE/Berkadia have Jr-brokerage programs where you are paid a small base salary and then put through a 1-2 yr "training period". You will probably get the opportunity to do the grunt work on some more senior transactions, but the main focus is still to move towards production.

If I were you I would look to be a full fledged analyst and secure a higher salary/get better deal exposure. There will always be an opportunity to move into a jr-associate role in IS if that is what you ultimately want to do. But first you should go work within the ecosystem and figure out if you even want to do it at all.

Nov 18, 2019

Don't go work at M&M - it takes a special type of person to perform there and your exit opps will suck compared to JLL/CBRE if you can't make it as a broker. Try to land an analyst gig at JLL/CBRE - if you don''t like brokerage you can just go back to the principal side as a senior analyst or associate maybe.

Nov 25, 2019

M&M's IPA division has some of the top MF teams on the west coast, they're far from a 1 bucket shop now. Don't sleep.

Nov 22, 2019

Deleted

Nov 26, 2019
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