Career Advice - Commercial Real Estate (Asset Management Analyst)

I'm currently a CRE analyst working in asset management for a relatively small company (~50 employees). I help manage the company REIT as well as a portfolio of loans on the private side of the business. I work on a small team (>10 people in my department) and I am putting in a solid amount of hours. It is my first job out of college and I only have one non CRE internship on my resume. I am grateful for the experience I'm gaining and understand I'm not in a bad situation by any means, but I feel that I'm being underpaid for the work I'm doing. I make $58k base salary plus a 20% target bonus, so my total comp is around $70k (I'm also in New York but not NYC, if that matters). I'm about 6 months into the job and I am looking for career advice as to what I can do to increase my comp or other career paths I can take from here to increase my salary.

1- What other job opportunities can I pursue with a background in asset/portfolio management? Is IB a stretch?

2- How long should I wait before considering other roles? 1 full year?

3- Is going back to school to get a Masters in RE worth it?

4- Am I an asshole who is making enough and should just take what I have? 

Appreciate any input and feel free to rip into me if I have it good and I should just stay put and do my time at this company.

Comments (3)

Most Helpful
Jan 11, 2022 - 10:22pm

Here are my thoughts..

1. With only 6 months experience, you are still very much "entry level", so I would generally say your prospects are close to what they were 6 months ago. That means you could find another entry level job, and maybe now have some leg up in similar roles to what you are doing, but don't expect much more of a look. As to IB, if you mean traditional IB (like on the IB wso forum)... this job isn't likely to make you any more valuable than when you applied back in school. If you want to look at CRE sellside DE broker roles, then sure, you can get a spot somewhere, and this job could actually help in some situations potentially. 

2. My "general" advice is best to hit that 2-year mark (or close to it) with first job, and ideally move UP not just laterally. I mean, why repeat the entry level gig at some other place (even if higher paid, more "prestigious") if you could get promoted up (be it internally or with new firm). The exception is when you get contacted/headhunted for a def better role, then go whenever! (hint, they likely will wait until that 1 year mark passes). This doesn't mean wait 2 full years to network or even apply for new gigs, networking starts yesterday and I'd maybe even say start applying at the one year mark. You only have a few more months, applying now may not look good in all reality (note, the job market does seem tight from what I gather, so if there ever was time to try and level up early, this may be it!).

3. Maybe, depends what your long term goals are. Grad degrees are really common in the higher levels of buyside CRE and increasingly sellside as well, but I'd only go when you know why you need to go and how it will advance you. Going now is probably less than optimal, but not crazy. I'd wait until at least 2 or better 3-4 years exp. otherwise you really wont be that qualified for true "grad" jobs at other end of the program.

4. LOL, you are making decent money for just out of UG, even for NY, non-NYC (not sure if you mean like Brooklyn, Long Island, or god forbid.. Buffalo!). Other than pay, is there anything you really hate about this job? Overall, sounds like a decent entry level first gig. Are there better ones? Sure, but CRE is not the kinda industry that cares much about firm names, so your ability to move up and around will only get better regardless. 

Personally, I'd prob say stick it out, as it does sound like you are learning legit stuff. If this firm's name has legit cred (can't tell tbh from post, but I get firm is small, but many legit CRE firms are), then sticking it out is probably worth it. You can also try to negotiate for big pay bump close to end of year one (again.. tight market). I really doubt this firm will be your end all for your career, but I don't see why you should rush out. But still, start networking and plotting/planning now, figure out what you really want to do, that will make this much easier! 

Jan 11, 2022 - 6:53pm

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