AMA - Master of Real Estate

CRE's picture
Rank: The Pro | banana points 23,700

I'm seeing a lot of MSRE/MRED questions lately as people are either choosing between programs, getting ready to start programs in a few months, or thinking about applying for 2018.

I am a recent Master of Real Estate graduate and I know we have a lot of current and former students on this board who can also provide solid insight, so if you have any questions, ask away. Don't just wait for my answers either - anyone can respond.

Comments (80)

Jun 19, 2017

What was your prior experience before attending the program?

At what point should someone consider getting their Masters?

Do you feel people jump into way too soon? I've seen many especially for NYU, jump straight into the program a year after UG or even many right after. I feel hisnis crazy as you getting yourself into so much debt for such an industry specific degree. Thoughts?

Best Response
Jun 19, 2017
Nousernamehere:

What was your prior experience before attending the program?

A little bit of everything. I was a market research analyst and an office leasing broker at a big name shop in a mid market, did multifamily operations for a family office in a mid-market, and then did acquisitions for a value-add shop in a mid market.

Nousernamehere:

At what point should someone consider getting their Masters?

Earlier than I did. I think if you're going to do it, you don't want to approach it in the same way you approach a MBA. That leads me to...

Nousernamehere:

Do you feel people jump into way too soon? I've seen many especially for NYU, jump straight into the program a year after UG or even many right after. I feel hisnis crazy as you getting yourself into so much debt for such an industry specific degree. Thoughts?

Nope. If I were to do it again, I would have done it as soon as I realized brokerage wasn't for me and I set my sights on development. Instead, I spent two years in semi-related roles that weren't development, and while I gained some insight, ultimately I'm just two years behind.

Getting my Master of Real Estate accomplished everything I wanted it to accomplish and then some, so don't get me wrong, but 90% of the classes were remedial for me. These programs are made up about 1/3 people like me with some experience looking to get to the next level, 1/3 people straight out of undergrad (usually with very wealthy and in-industry fathers), and 1/3 construction or architecture people trying to get to the dark side. Thus, when you're in classes, 1/3 of your class won't understand what Floor Area Ratio means or what a net lease is, and a different 1/3 won't understand how you calculate a cap rate, much less how to do it in Excel.

There is nothing wrong with any of that - school is literally a place to learn - but the 1/3 of us who knew all of that and wanted to both think of real estate on a higher level and also get deep into the weeds on certain subjects were rolling our eyes and falling asleep in class until the end of the program. Had I done the program two years sooner, a lot of that stuff would have been new to me.

As far as the degree being industry-specific, if you don't know you're a real estate person, don't do the degree. MBAs are far more versatile.

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Jun 19, 2017

Thanks for the AMA. I understand that you did not attend a highly ranked private/ public university for your MSRE (like Columbia). What would you say is the recruiting difference between those and where you attended? Additionally, how do you feel about 1 year vs. 2 year programs? How was the job function (Brokerage, Development, REPE, Banking) and salary breakdown from your program? How do you feel about someone that already holds a graduate degree (ex. an MSF) attending a MSRE?

Jun 19, 2017
BobTheBaker:

Thanks for the AMA. I understand that you did not attend a highly ranked private/ public university for your MSRE (like Columbia). What would you say is the recruiting difference between those and where you attended?

OCI at smaller or less prestigious schools is probably inferior in general (I know it is compared to Cornell, for instance) but that never bothered me. I actually got my summer associate spot through OCI but other than that I'm a huge advocate of cold emails, networking calls, driving 2.5 hours to grab coffee with an exec, etc. You have to be able to pound pavement in real estate in general, and the network I created through relentless networking directly set me up for my current position. By the time I met with my now-bosses, I had 3 different mutual connections that went to bat for me.

This wasn't your question, but in a larger sense, I hardly felt any "prestige discrimination" in my internship hunt or job hunt - and definitely none in an institutional sense. There is one guy in particular who I will remember for a long time because he was a douchebag about it, but I interviewed at a number of "Top 25" multifamily firms, plus Related, Hines, Jamestown, Skanska, etc. and never felt like I was lesser than anyone else because I didn't go to an Ivy league school. Perhaps that's why I didn't get certain positions in the end, but I'm at peace with that if it's the case.

In development, certainly more than REPE, most people don't even have graduate degrees. It's very much a learn on the job type of industry and I was actually over-educated but under-experienced, if you know what I mean, when I was interviewing for roles. Plus, you never know who is involved in your program. I count the global head of real estate at a major life co and the former COO of one of the largest office REITs in the world as personal mentors and I call them up every now and then for career/life advice. Neither of these guys are Ivy-league, but their dicks swing just as big.

BobTheBaker:

Additionally, how do you feel about 1 year vs. 2 year programs?

Very torn, but 2-year programs are going to become less and less popular. Clemson just switched theirs from 24 months to 12 or 18 months, depending on experience. I picked a 2-year program (specifically over 1-year Johns Hopkins and 2-3 year evening school at Georgetown) because I really wanted that summer associate experience. I got it, and got my current job partially because of both the experience and the connections I made at it, so I clearly made a good choice, but the lost income and general draw-out nature of a two year program do make me second guess it from time to time. Had I the choice again, with what I know now, I'm not sure I'd make the same decision.

I think the more direct experience you have, the shorter your chosen program should be.

BobTheBaker:

How was the job function (Brokerage, Development, REPE, Banking) and salary breakdown from your program?

Roughly:
50% Development
25% REPE
15% Working for daddy or daddy's friends doing who knows what
5% Brokerage or Market Analysis
5% Unknown/Unemployed
Zero banking (both zero interest and, let's be honest, zero preftige).

Base salary $60k-$80K but total comp all over the board, way too hard to break down in value person to person, and some people I don't talk to enough to get into that. In general, development pays lower than REPE out of the gate, but you don't get into development to make bank in year 1.

BobTheBaker:

How do you feel about someone that already holds a graduate degree (ex. an MSF) attending a MSRE?

I think last year we had a MAcc grad, but in general I think it's probably a waste. Maybe if you get a full ride and don't feel like working for a bit it's a good option because you will learn some things, but all a masters degree does is make you look better than other applicants. If you already check that box (and you're undoubtedly better at finance, in your example, than you will ever need to be), you'd be better served interning, working in-industry, networking into better roles, etc.

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Jun 19, 2017

I know this question gets asked a lot, but what was your personal preference of getting a MSRE/MRED as opposed to a MBA that had a more RE focus, and of those which would you say would have been more applicable to your time working acquisitions for the value-add?

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Jun 19, 2017
BubbaBanker:

I know this question gets asked a lot, but what was your personal preference of getting a MSRE/MRED as opposed to a MBA that had a more RE focus,

A few things:

  1. I knew I wanted real estate. I've flirted with some other career paths from time to time when I found myself discouraged with my role, and probably some 4-5 year old posts on this website confirm that, but when it came down to it, I knew I was a real estate guy and I knew I wanted to be a developer.
  2. I had a good friend from college whom I worked with when I was at the brokerage shop. He went back to Georgetown's program and his career skyrocketed. He got a job with a well-known debt brokerage shop in NYC and is doing very well for himself. It showed me what the degree could do.
  3. Master in Real Estate programs in general are much, much cheaper than MBA programs. I was already $50k in debt from undergrad and wasn't looking to take out another $150k.
  4. My undergraduate GPA was atrocious - sub 3.0 - due to a host of dumb reasons that are no longer relevant to my life. I'd tell the story but it would out me even more than I already am. Anyhow, most Master of Real Estate programs a) allow you to take the GRE, which IMO is a much easier test and, b) Don't give two shits about your GPA because there are no rankings they have to appease. I had already overcome that GPA many times over in life, but I wasn't going to overcome it in the MBA admissions process.
BubbaBanker:

and of those which would you say would have been more applicable to your time working acquisitions for the value-add?

Between the MBA and the Master in Real Estate? Either or, or neither even. My Master in Real Estate didn't focus on value add at all really and I doubt many MBA programs get that granular. My time with that company was about 1/3 running models, 1/3 helping pick out paint colors and fixtures and the like, and 1/3 doing due diligence walks for potential acquisitions. I loved the first two and hated the third, but man did I run into some weird shit during due diligence walks, including:

  1. A man with a floor to ceiling poster of a naked baby. Reported him to the cops.
  2. A unit that was vacant but we had to mark as occupied because it was a DEA/FBA drug sting operation.
  3. A toilet overflowing with blood like in a horror movie. Or more specifically it was coated with dried blood from overflowing with blood.
  4. Multiple hoarders, which is just kind of sad.
  5. A vacant unit that looked completely normal, but when I walked out my khaki pants were covered up to the knee in fleas.
  6. People who treated their disgusting slum apartments with the utmost respect and care, which I really admired. I'm talking section 8 units in the same complexes as all of the above examples that were simply immaculate.
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Jun 19, 2017

Differences in MSRE VS MSRED? Why choose one over the other?

Jun 19, 2017
nsjkd:

Differences in MSRE VS MSRED? Why choose one over the other?

"Is your dick big enough?" If so, get the MSRED. That's what the D stands for.

Really though, it's "Do you want to do development or not?" The D still stands for big dick though.

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Jun 19, 2017

Currently at a small boutique REPE firm as an analyst and would like to eventually move to a bigger shop doing acquisitions/Asset Management. Would knowledge of development be of much value?

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Jun 19, 2017

Have you ever heard of RE professionals who have transitioned to a real estate tech role by going to a grad program for a tech related degree ? Or vice-versa an undergrad from a computer science background who has pursued a MSRE. I imagine both of those probably aren't common, but I would bet the latter is easier/more common that the former.

Jun 19, 2017

I personally haven't, but that doesn't mean it doesn't happen. RE Tech is a really interesting space right now because the industry is so far behind. I would imagine somewhere like SF would be a good place to find people like that.

Jun 21, 2017
CRE:

I personally haven't, but that doesn't mean it doesn't happen. RE Tech is a really interesting space right now because the industry is so far behind. I would imagine somewhere like SF would be a good place to find people like that.

A good friend of mine works at Altus/Argus, how much do you hate their software?

Jun 21, 2017

What type of roll are you looking at? If you want to make an industry software it helps to have industry knowledge but that can be farmed out easier and cheaper.

Follow the shit your fellow monkeys say @shitWSOsays

Life is hard, it's even harder when you're stupid - John Wayne

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Jun 19, 2017

So did you take the GMAT?

I know NYU doesn't require it. I'm like you, awful UG GPA(2.7) but I have 1.5yr F25 Corporate experience and currently at a reputable well known shop. Was thinking maybe in a year to apply. Would have good contacts for recommendations as well.

Jun 19, 2017

I took the GRE.

The best thing for you to do is to reach out and ask. Schools should be pretty upfront with you about your candidacy and what it would take to get admission.

Jun 21, 2017

I can tell you for a fact that NYU will MAKE you take the GMAT or GRE with your GPA.

My co-worker, who had similar GPA as you, applied for NYU since it didn't require the GMAT but they sent her a letter with minimum gmat score and gave her one year to submit the score before reviewing her application.

I am not sure if the minimum scores vary for every person but for her it was around high 600s.. She is still taking the gmat test...

so just get it over with it before you start submitting applications.

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Jun 21, 2017

From everything I've heard and seen NYU real estate masters actually basically takes everyone with a pulse and a wallet.

As for gmat scores for re masters:
USC: 640 average
MIT: average between 660 and 700 in recent years
NYU: " Successful candidates have met the recommended combined score of 310 or 1100 on the GRE or 550 on the GMAT."
Cornell: info not available
Columbia: info not available
John Hopkins: 636 average

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Jun 19, 2017

Appreciate all the insights you provide. Given that most RE companies don't hire ahead of need, mostly last-minute hires. How effective was networking in the fall? Was it pushing rope or did you yield better results than those who played golf? Given the expected slowdown in development for the next couple of years, were companies expecting you to take less money? How did you manage your 1st offer? Leverage it to get other offers, attempt to get higher comp or possible equity?

"Capitalism: God's way of determining who is smart and who is poor." Ron Swanson

Jun 19, 2017
RE Pirate:

Appreciate all the insights you provide.

Of course. This site has helped me a lot. Make sure you give back when you can.

RE Pirate:

Given that most RE companies don't hire ahead of need, mostly last-minute hires. How effective was networking in the fall?

It depends how you define effective. I made some fantastic connections that ultimately helped me via reaching out in the fall, but I didn't get a job until last minute, as you said. I would still do it.

RE Pirate:

Was it pushing rope or did you yield better results than those who played golf?

I played a lot of golf too, don't get me wrong. Almost got an Eagle two days ago, but I two-putted after driving the green on a short Par 4. Ridiculous.

Anyhow, the people who networked definitely got a better result. I have one classmate who still isn't employed because he didn't put the effort in. Smart kid too, but rather shy.

RE Pirate:

Given the expected slowdown in development for the next couple of years, were companies expecting you to take less money? How did you manage your 1st offer? Leverage it to get other offers, attempt to get higher comp or possible equity?

I got hit with the master stroke of salary negotiating by my company. The problem with negotiating salary with people who negotiate for a living is that they're a lot better than you. They told me long stories about how people took haircuts to work there because of the opportunity, how they started with pitiful salaries when they got into the business, and most importantly, how if I was the kind of low-risk loser who was looking for a paycheck and not the upside I shouldn't be in the business anyhow. It's like when you hit a bump on the road and for a moment you see the coffee fly into the air. It hasn't hit you yet, and you know what's coming, but you're powerless to stop it.

I also was at a strange disadvantage in that my second best deal wasn't in development. The company was far more prestigious, but it was an Asset Management role. The base would have been higher, but it's not a comparable position and I definitely wanted development over all.

The big thing here is that comp in development varies wildly in amount and structure across markets, product types, companies, etc. I have a mediocre base, but a 20% bonus, full benefits, cell reimbursement, company card, etc. but, most importantly, I am gifted a half a percent equity in every deal. This was a big draw for me. Once I start running projects on my own, I'll also get benchmark bonuses and that equity % will go up.

Other companies can, and probably do, have extremely different comp structures. Had I worked full time for the company I worked for last summer, my comp would have been $15k more base, 20% personal bonus, 10% project performance bonus (so up to 10% more bonus), worse benefits, and no equity. It's all about what you value.

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Jun 20, 2017

What would a 'personal bonus' be based on, if there was a separate performance/project bonus?

Jun 21, 2017

If people tell me to take a haircut I tell them to fuck off. If you have reached the salary negotiation stage you have almost as much power as they do. Sure they can revoke your offer but in RE it is usually such last min that they don't have time to start over or even go back and finalize someone they turned away. I always tell people to put your balls on the table and dare them to smash them.

Follow the shit your fellow monkeys say @shitWSOsays

Life is hard, it's even harder when you're stupid - John Wayne

Jun 20, 2017

@CRE Any reputable programs out in the Colorado market worth the investment? Or best to get MSRE/MSRED from top school mentioned above and transfer markets upon completion?

Jun 19, 2017

I've heard good things about The Leeds MS Program in Real Estate at Colorado Boulder but I can't speak to their placement or anything. It would definitely be most applicable to the market, however.

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Jun 20, 2017

Denver university's msre program is highly regarded in Colorado. However I believe they just changed the circulum and cannot speak to the new program.

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Jun 20, 2017

You mentioned that you worked in the summer during your program. When did you start the job search for the summer job? Did you land the gig through OCI in the fall?

Secondly, any insight on landing debt/banking/CMBS jobs? I know your in development but do you know anybody in your program that landed a gig on the debt side, do you know how their job search was. Thank you!

Jun 19, 2017
dee91091444:

You mentioned that you worked in the summer during your program. When did you start the job search for the summer job? Did you land the gig through OCI in the fall?

I started almost immediately when I got to school. I would definitely recommend being ready to hit the ground running come January. Real estate firms are weird - some recruit in the fall, some in the early spring, some in the late spring, and some the last possible second before summer starts.

I found mine through OCI. The firm came to campus, interviewed select people, picked me to go to the office to interview, and I got it.

dee91091444:

Secondly, any insight on landing debt/banking/CMBS jobs? I know your in development but do you know anybody in your program that landed a gig on the debt side, do you know how their job search was. Thank you!

My program is heavily weighted toward development. People go there to get into development, so no one is self-selecting to get into the debt side.

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Jun 20, 2017

Thank you! and you started school in fall? And OCI was fall? I just started school in the summer, so I think i still have time for OCI, however, I am noticing some debt shops/banks have started to post for 2018 summer gigs, so I think I will have to apply soon.

Jun 19, 2017

When you say most went into Development.. what type of roles? Development Analyst? DM/PMs if they had prior experience? APMs?

Jun 19, 2017

Varies wildly, but not on experience as much as company structure.

I'm a ADM because my company is built that way. There are two principals, three construction guys, one accountant, three DMs, and three ADMs. No analysts or anything here. A buddy of mine is a development analyst. Another classmate is a "Development Manager" - but knowing him there's no way his position is the same as the development managers at my shop, even if they're called the same thing.

It's actually weird looking for a development position post-grad because of how varied the positions are. Analyst, Associate, Project Manager, Development Manager, and any other combination possible. Within those titles, the actual roles and responsibilities vary as well.

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Jun 20, 2017

Assuming all market conditions remain conducive to your industry.. what do you anticipate your maximum earning potential to be?

Jun 19, 2017

Are you asking current-year or lifetime? Lifetime is infinite, but market conditions will not remain consistently conducive to real estate development. The market always cycles. I could make hundreds of millions and then lose it all if I do the wrong thing. Really hard to guess on my lifetime earning potential.

This year, it depends on if the deals I own sell or not. I should be looking at around $85k, but that could bump with equity yields.

Jun 20, 2017

What is your job function/what do you do on a daily basis in your position in development? I'm debating between MSRED/MSRE and want to learn more about development

Jun 21, 2017
Resi2CommNYC:

What is your job function/what do you do on a daily basis in your position in development? I'm debating between MSRED/MSRE and want to learn more about development

I have seen in your profile that you are a developer, could you give me insight at how your day to days are? I have an idea but just want to "live it"

Have same question as the quoted person.

Jun 19, 2017
Resi2CommNYC:

What is your job function/what do you do on a daily basis in your position in development? I'm debating between MSRED/MSRE and want to learn more about development

MSRE-13:

I have seen in your profile that you are a developer, could you give me insight at how your day to days are? I have an idea but just want to "live it"

Monday mornings start with an office-wide meeting where everyone catches up on what they've done for the week. It's a good time for the principals to both get and idea on what's going on and give advice/guidance to DMs and ADMs about how to solve issues that arise. The rest of Monday is usually catching up/office work - coordinating future meetings between 20+ vendors, responding to emails, getting documents signed and scanned, getting checks mailed/delivered, etc. Last Monday I had to get a $300,000.00+ check for sewer fees cut and delivered to the city.

Tuesday is all day on-site for a complicated job I'm on. It's a town center mixed-use deal with MF, Office, Retail, and Restaurant and it's being developed by 3 development companies, 3 contractors, and as a result takes a lot of time and effort on coordination. We're the master developers too, so it's more time and effort for us. This week we had a utility coordination meeting, a MF fixtures and finishes coordination meeting, and a meeting about parking deck lighting options in the morning, and then our standard Owner/Architect/Contractor meeting all afternoon.

Wednesdays are either out of town for all of the above for a student housing job I'm on in a different city, or another office day. Last Wednesday I had to write two executive summaries, set up some more meetings, and put out fires here and there. This Wednesday I'm putting together a presentation for our investors, touring a deal the company did last year that won all sorts of awards to learn best practices/areas to improve on, and then going to a party put on by Google Fiber. I stopped writing this at 9:30 because random shit came up. One of our development partners isn't getting information to us and our third partner in a timely manner. We need the electrical plans for the retail trash compactor ASAP and they're holding it up. Now it's 11:30 and I'm resuming.

Thursday is an open morning that I use to network/put out fires, etc. Next week I'm going to a ULI thing, for instance. Thursday afternoon is OAC meetings with another job I'm on. Next Thursday I'm going to a beer launch party with a movie studio. I didn't know those existed, but it sounds cool.

Friday is everything that couldn't fit into Monday through Thursday. So getting updates, giving updates, looking at new deals, underwriting, prepping next week's schedule, putting out some more fires, etc. Last Friday I had to get a $875.00 check cut because when we handled the $300k+ check for sewer fees, our consultant forgot something. Drove that to the city.

Zero weekend work so far, which is awesome. Going to get my golf swing analyzed this Saturday and then hopefully not be so awful when I play 18 Saturday afternoon or Sunday morning. Everyone in the office either hunts, cycles, or golfs. I'm not a good old boy even though I've been hunting, and I definitely don't bike, so I gotta get my golf game up.

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Jun 19, 2017

Sounds like you hit the jackpot.

Going to start cold emailing some local developers.

Jun 21, 2017

If you were to go back again and obviously had the same interest of being in development. Staying in the East coast.

Which would you say are the strongest or maybe the top 5 MRE in development (MRED/MSRED) programs you would have on your list at the moment. Seeing and gaining knowledge now and knowing what you know now. Have you thought about this question?

Jun 19, 2017
MSRE-13:

If you were to go back again and obviously had the same interest of being in development. Staying in the East coast.

Which would you say are the strongest or maybe the top 5 MRE in development (MRED/MSRED) programs you would have on your list at the moment. Seeing and gaining knowledge now and knowing what you know now. Have you thought about this question?

Well, some random website
ranked them this year
http://www.best-masters.com/ranking-master-real-es... , but I wouldn't put a lot of stock in it yet. There are a lot of MBA programs in there and I've talked to two programs who said they didn't even bother responding. Time will tell whether or not it means anything.

The big hitters in MSRE/MRED programs are Columbia, NYU, Cornell, USC, and MIT. The selection process is personal, though. If I was doing it the same, I would probably look at the same schools I looked at originally (Johns Hopkins, Clemson, Georgetown, Maryland) and then also add some like Georgia Tech and perhaps give MBA programs with solid real estate tracks a better look.

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Jun 20, 2017

I know there is another thread about books/textbooks, but can you provide a couple great reads/textbooks you used from class, if any at all? I don't think I am realistically going to get any type of further education,. but I am purchasing books for personal education purposes.

Jun 19, 2017

I barely opened any textbooks to be honest. Let me look through those that I actually did, and kept, when I get home tonight. There would a couple ULI texts that were good and an excel modeling book that most people buy.

Edit: Or I could just look through my Amazon history.

Text Books I Actually Read:

Foundations of Real Estate Financial Modelling 1st Edition by Roger Staiger
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1138025178/ref=o...

Professional Real Estate Development: The ULI Guide to the Business, 3rd Edition 3rd Edition by Richard Peiser
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0874201632/ref=o...

Finance for Real Estate Development (ULI) by Charles Long
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0874201578/ref=o...

The Staiger book has some editing errors that you can Google for fixes but it's still the best "How To Model Real Estate" book I can think of.

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Jun 21, 2017

What trials and tribulations do you have to complete to become a "master of real estate"? Did you have to do some wax on wax off bs?

Also, at what point in your life did President Trump inspire you to get into real estate?

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Jun 21, 2017

Any recommendations for recruiting in states that aren't part of your school network besides linkedin and calling? I'm looking to work in cities like Austin, Dallas, Charlotte, Denver, Nashville, or somewhere in Florida. I'll pretty much go where the opportunity is.

Jun 19, 2017

Visit. For it to work, you're going to have to physically be there from time to time.

Jun 24, 2017

If you could go back and do it again, would you still choose to get a MRE or MBA? Additionally, do you think a MRE is considered an equivalent to MBA for employers when checking off the graduate school box for promotion to Director/Senior Director/VP roles?

Jun 19, 2017
chad21:

If you could go back and do it again, would you still choose to get a MRE or MBA? Additionally, do you think a MRE is considered an equivalent to MBA for employers when checking off the graduate school box for promotion to Director/Senior Director/VP roles?

It depends on the employers. Half of them think I have a MBA, even though my resume, and my mouth, say otherwise. In general, it's in a weird place where it's on the same level but not on the same level. You'll be interning with MBA students, and applying to the same jobs as MBA students, but some places will still not give you the credit.

In development, you don't need a graduate degree at all, so anything is a plus. I made the correct decision for my goals. If you want to work REPE at Blackstone or Carlyle, a top MBA might be more fitting.

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Jun 26, 2017

I agree, this depends on the employers and the individual resume of the employee. In most cases, what I've seen is the MSRE is not treated the same as an MBA. I interned with MBA's and those who chose to return did so in higher positions (thus greater salary) than those who came from an MSRE background.

Jun 24, 2017

Would you recommend going MSRE out of UG if you don't land a position that you want? I'll be 24 when I graduate UG, so that may play a factor.

Thanks for doing the thread, one of the most discussed topics on the RE board, great consolidation of info here.

I come from down in the Valley, where Mr. when you're young, they bring you up to do like your daddy done.

Jun 19, 2017
BBA18:

Would you recommend going MSRE out of UG if you don't land a position that you want? I'll be 24 when I graduate UG, so that may play a factor.

I think there's a sweet spot where you need a year or so of experience in the industry but not 3+. My classmates that came straight out of undergrad didn't get the same internship or job opportunities I did because employers saw them as too raw.

I would take a position in the industry, even if it's not one you want, with full intention of leaving. So graduate UG in May, start in June, apply for programs in the fall/winter, and start the program in the summer/fall of the following year.

The exception of this would be something like MIT's program, which requires 3 years of relevant experience first.

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Jun 20, 2017

I have tons of experience in residential brokerage, residential & MF "flips", and a few smaller commercial deals where we bought foreclosed space and turned it into executive office space, but nothing on a grand scale. Would you think with that experience I have any shot at getting into a MSRE/MSRED like Columbia or NYU (with good gmat scores obviously) if I wanted to transition to investment/development?

Most of the positions I see when browsing around are asking for minimum 2+ years direct experience to break into these kinds of roles. I always kind of saw brokerage as a means to an end - work your ass off and make money now and become an owner/developer later when you had the money. I'm doing that now, but I want to do bigger deals (maybe its an ego thing?) and can't do that where I'm at now. I would assume having an advanced degree would help exponentially with credibility down the line if I wanted to raise money from outside investors for future deals of my own.

Jul 1, 2017

Why pigeon hole yourself. If you have the scores and experience, why not go for a traditional MBA in those stellar schools/programs (NYU or Columbia) and concentrate in RE or better yet - Finance generally, which given your decent re backgound will give you the best of all worlds post-grad.

Jun 19, 2017

Is this to me or were you meaning to respond to someone else?

Jul 1, 2017

Was responding to Resi2 (poster directly above my response). Sorry if there was a confusion. Good thread - thanks for creating.

Aug 22, 2017

Hi guys. I have some questions. I am a civil engineering student and also trainee at Cushman & Wakefield Istanbul during 7 months. Next month my school will be finish and probably I become associate at the firm. I want to come NY and do master in Baruch College MSRE ( my gpa is very low so I can not do master at NYU ) next year. Is it good idea ? What is your advice for me ? And in my first year , how much money I can get in a year ? Regards.

Jun 19, 2017

Depends on a few things:

  1. Do you plan on returning to Istanbul or remaining in America after graduation?
  2. If you plan on returning to Istanbul, does Baruch College mean anything to employers there? Does it matter where you get your degree?
  3. If your plan is to stay in America, your English needs some work
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Aug 22, 2017

Its not a problem. Before the master, I will go to language school and practice almost 6 months. All I need learn much words and improve my speech . My plan is stay USA. And I hope your knowledge , experience and ideas can be great for me .

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Jun 19, 2017

Saw this bumped and figured I would ask a couple more:

1) Thinking of going part time by Fall of 2018..if you go part time are you basically stuck at your current employer for the duration of getting your degree? Meaning most firms won't really want to take on a guy full time who they see is currently in school.

2) Probably end up at NYU.. my goal is either AM or in Development in some capacity.. they have the Finance or Dev route.. does it really matter at end of day which route to take? I would like to work for a GP/Operator opposed to some institutial REPE LP shop.

Jun 19, 2017
Nousernamehere:

Saw this bumped and figured I would ask a couple more:

1) Thinking of going part time by Fall of 2018..if you go part time are you basically stuck at your current employer for the duration of getting your degree? Meaning most firms won't really want to take on a guy full time who they see is currently in school.

Probably impossible to predict. It could happen or it could not.

Nousernamehere:

2) Probably end up at NYU.. my goal is either AM or in Development in some capacity.. they have the Finance or Dev route.. does it really matter at end of day which route to take? I would like to work for a GP/Operator opposed to some institutial REPE LP shop.

It doesn't matter in the grand scheme of things, but I'm sure picking the route that actually matches the route you want to take will give you more applicable electives and an easier story in interviews.

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Aug 31, 2017

Are MSRE programs useful for those without any RE experience and trying to break in from other areas of finance?

Do you know if recruiting at Georgetown is still strong despite the Dean leaving to JHU?

Given that I don't have RE experience, would a part-time program be better in order to secure an internship while taking classes?

Jun 19, 2017
SamSung:

Are MSRE programs useful for those without any RE experience and trying to break in from other areas of finance?

Possibly. Depends on individual situations.

SamSung:

Do you know if recruiting at Georgetown is still strong despite the Dean leaving to JHU?

That happened years ago now. It is still a strong program.

SamSung:

Given that I don't have RE experience, would a part-time program be better in order to secure an internship while taking classes?

Really "it depends." More info about you is needed.

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Sep 11, 2017

looks like fordham has a new msre starting next spring. thoughts on this vs nyu?

Jun 19, 2017

This is interesting.

Just saw this. I knew they came out with their certificate last year but does look like they are creating an MSRE. Can be done full time in 1 year. I may apply but hesitant on it being a new program and people not being familiar with it compared to NYU/Columbia.

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Sep 11, 2017

also no mention of online option like NYU.

Jun 19, 2017
sml030188:

looks like fordham has a new msre starting next spring. thoughts on this vs nyu?

Hardest part about any new program is the lack of alumni. Some programs rectify this by having a strong advancement board or similar group of people who are at least alumni of the school and support the program. A good example is UNCC - a school that plenty here have never heard of but does very well in Charlotte because of their connection to Childress Klein.

Find out if Fordham has something similar. Without connections, I would worry about the program. With connections, it might be a blessing.

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Sep 11, 2017

great point. it looks like the program will be around $47k (36 credit program at $1,295 a credit)

Dec 23, 2018

@CRE Really appreciate you taking the time to start this thread and offer guidance. It's incredibly insightful!

I am two years into a small retail leasing/sales brokerage shop and have been strongly considering making a switch into development. I find myself increasingly more interested in learning how projects are put together from the start, being able to make more of a "mark" on my community with an eye-catching/creative product, and I'm concerned that brokerage, while shaping up to be very lucrative, will make me more rich than wealthy. I eventually want to build equity in projects verses collecting fees.

I do work with a handful of preferred retail developers and feel like working for them eventually would be a logical next step, however the only value I provide is via brokerage (site selection, network of retailers/restaurant groups, deal negotiation) and I have no experience working in finance, entitlements, planning, etc. In your opinion would a MSRE/MSRED be a worthwhile investment to bridge this gap, or should I try to get hired by a developer without the degree?

Also, did the MSRE give you enough confidence to go out on your own and do your own deals? Or is on the job experience a must for this?

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