I have 30 days to become RE Acquisitions Modeling Proficient, and only can spend $100. What is best way to accomplish this?

I did my undergrad in business administration, but did not touch on real estate. I have 30 days to get excel modeling proficient for an acquisitions role focusing on the main re sectors [office, retail and multifamily rental with possibility for hotel].

What books should I read, and what classes and models can I study to become proficient? I am literally on a shoestring budget of $100 so any free resources to bootstrap my learning would be extremely appreciated. I am feeling tad desperate and am planning to hit this for 16 hours a day if need be.

Comments (13)

Dec 3, 2013

There was a Columbia professor, Joshua Carr I believe, who had some free lessons on iTunes. Not sure if they are still there as I don't use the program. But others in the industry mentioned it to me.

Dec 3, 2013

Thanks karypto

Funny, they have torrents to download the most inane of things and yet something like this which could be life changing for us (having right information and knowledge and the right time) is out of reach when your costs are constrained.

I still need model experience on those asset classes though. I did a google type search for excel and keywords: "office" "excel model" "underwriting" etc and have not uncovered much yet, but it seems like a possibly fruitful way to find publicly available models.

Thanks for the help!

Dec 3, 2013

Office, Retail, Multifamily are real estate products/property type/asset classes - not sectors. This will likely save you some embarrassment. The reason you are having a hard time finding models is because they are quite difficult to build. If they were easy, everyone would do it, and modeling wouldn't be a standard in the interview process. I can't speak about the training packages offered, but I would recommend getting creative and finding a way to invest in a class/guide.

Dec 4, 2013

You are doing acquisitions so you don't need REIT modeling skills (BIWS).

You are going to be using Argus for all property types besides Multi. There are lots of multi-family models out there and you can download a student version of Argus.

Agreeing with DBI3171, get a credit card dude, if this is your job some of these classes (Kahr) included are well worth the investment.

Since I'm a nice guy I'll direct you to one free source.


Dec 4, 2013

Are you interviewing for a position? Or starting one? If you already have a foot in the door for an acquisitions job right out of college with zero real estate experience than you are on a good path. Geez, I had to work my ass off right out of college as a broker making no money for 2 years before I eventually networked into an analyst gig in real estate finance.

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Dec 3, 2013

PaulFranklin, I am starting a "position" -- but it is a 100% unpaid internship without even a stipend and no guarantee of getting hired. I feel overwhelmed in what is going to be asked of me, and want to start off hitting the ground running. What are you doing now Paul?

Best Response
Dec 3, 2013

PaulFranklin, I am starting a "position" -- but it is a 100% unpaid internship without even a stipend and no guarantee of getting hired. I feel overwhelmed in what is going to be asked of me, and want to start off hitting the ground running. What are you doing now Paul?

OK then, game-changer. Frame your pitch on working hard, learning interest, and the love of real estate. Plain and simple, you will not be able to accomplish what you are trying to do. The good thing is that it appears that they are blowing smoke at you in the terms of what they are requiring for an unpaid intern. Know your metrics and your proforma line items cold. They will want to hear:

"Market rates times net rentable area equals base rental revenue. From there, subtract absorption & turnover vacancy and rent abatement to get scheduled base rental revenue. Then add reimbursement revenue and all other misc. income to get total gross revenue. Subtract any applied credit loss or general vacancy factors to get to effective gross income. from there, subtract all operating expenses to get to net operating income. Leasing commissions, tenant improvements and capital expenditures will then be subtracted from net operating income to get to net cash flow before debt service. then subtract senior, mezz, and refi interest and principal payments to get net cash flow after debt service. debt service coverage and cash on cash returns can be calculated at this time. now its time to factor in acquisition costs and closing costs, as well as all financing costs. financing reserve stipulations can be subtracted, which will result in cash flow after financing and reserves. from there, model in dispo assumptions. gross sales minus commissions and all other closing costs equal net sales proceeds. you will have to payoff your debt as well, so subtract senior, mezz and refi payoff cash flows as well as their exit fees. this will leave you with total net cash flow, from which levered equity multiples and IRR's may be calculated."

Best of luck.

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Dec 5, 2013

There are a lot of downloadable case studies and homework assignments from business schools you could model out in excel or argus. I think you can use the argus trial for a month. Youtube may be helpful?

If they gave you a shot at an unpaid internship, maybe you could email one of the guys you know and ask him to send you something old to work with? Like an example. Say you want to get a head start and ensure you can be of use on day 1. Couldn't hurt to try and email a professor for a model or homework problem and explain the situation.

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Dec 7, 2013

DBI3171, good point

Dec 3, 2013

Thank you Gent.

Dec 8, 2013

Check out refm (it won't let me post a link)

Dec 10, 2013

a) check out REFM free videos for modelling basics. Kahr for RE finance generally.

b) get a credit card, or do somebody a favor to get another $150, and buy either the REFM modules or BIWS, which has good development and acquisitions models. then use them to build your own from a case study.

c) approach the job with the fervor that DBI3171 suggests.

good luck.

Jan 7, 2014
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