Real Estate Consulting/Advisory..what the hell is RE Consulting

So I've run into a couple of these shops, and have no idea what real estate consulting is. I know advisory is a circular way to say brokerage, but what other value add would it merit to call yourself advisory instead of brokerage, or consulting instead of anything else?

Comments (22)

Aug 25, 2017

RE consultants represent pension/ sovereign wealth funds or most institutions that have a real estate bucket that needs filling. They help them choose REPE Funds and go through the process of vetting them, provide analysis, and advise them through JV formations.

Aug 25, 2017

I've seen brokerage shops, especially big name tenant rep teams, pitch themselves as consultants. It's very much becoming a trend in the tenant rep world.

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Aug 25, 2017

I'm not sure if this is 100% what you're talking about, but what about a firm like John Burns RE Consulting? We hired them to do a specific research project for us when we were putting together our 4th multifamily fund. We needed to understand very specific supply/demand metrics that were simply not available from the usual sources (Greenstreet, Fed data, brokerage research, etc).

Aug 25, 2017

I've also seen some PE shops with "Advisory" functions offering Asset Management services. Taking on clients to find efficiency and cut costs on the asset level.

I assume this is a way to smooth over ups and downs in the cycle. Seems pretty interesting to me...

Sep 11, 2017

FTI has a real estate advisory arm as well. includes Strategic Advisory, Transaction Due Diligence & Management Restructuring Advisory Tax Advisory Litigation Support & Expert Witness Capital Markets Outsourced Accounting & Financial Reporting Executive Compensation & Corporate Governance Residential & Commercial Mortgage-Backed Securities. I wasn't able to add their website since I'm new.

Best Response
Sep 11, 2017

Technically, a good brokerage shop / team should already be doing advisory. If you think about it, a BOV is exactly that, advice on what you could sell your asset at in the current market. Beyond that, they should be providing insight into the strategy/timing around bringing your asset to market, who to market it to, possible pitfalls/things you should do prior to marketing it, etc. If all they are doing is listing it and forwarding the client offers from buyers, they are really just a glorified marketing team. Similarly, an investment company should be in an advisory/fiduciary role if investing money from external sources (i.e., not the funds of partners/ownership). You are the one finding potential investments, presenting and advising whether or not your investors/clients should buy it. Once acquired, depending how the firm is set up you could also be advising how to manage it from an AM level.

There are other things that advisory could entail, such as how to operate your asset/portfolio more efficiently. Some of the bigger shops have teams like this that provide a similar role to that of a consulting firm at a company, except at the REOC level instead of entity level.

Buyside advisory is another common one. For unsophisticated investors this can be extremely helpful/lucrative.

So short answer, it can mean a lot of different things depending on context. Don't think it's all that strange/uncommon.

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Sep 11, 2017


Sep 11, 2017

Many times 'RE Consultants' are working with public REIT's to help with capital allocation decisions / spin-offs / value-add shareholder decisions, other time they could be working with non-RE companies like retailers or restaurants who are looking to better position themselves in the market by looking at strategic alternatives (i.e. selling off some of their highly-sought assets).

Nov 6, 2017

Hey JS_Kitz1, sorry about the delay, but are any of these useful:

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  • More suggestions...

If we're lucky, maybe I can guilt some users to help you out: @Son of Sternlicht @Son of Sternlicht @Vicks72925

I hope those threads give you a bit more insight.

Nov 6, 2017

there is in NYC, my school just posted an OCR winter internship for one.

Nov 6, 2017


Nov 6, 2017

FTI Consulting?

Nov 6, 2017

I've just started an attempt to learn more about the real estate consulting space and am finding out about a few. Just from job hunting I've come across a few postings geared towards developers, they seem more contract or temp. oriented and are looking for 10+ years of development experience.

PKF consulting (Hospitality space) was quoted in a GlobeSt. article. No open positions there currently, but it looks like they provide asset/mgmt services and research services.

There are some consulting groups that help funds real estate departments (such as the newly created TMRS real estate fund) pick RE jv projects or funds to invest in. Looking at TMRS's meeting minutes it looks like they use R.V. Kuhns for studies and services.

Nov 6, 2017

Almost all of the top brokerages (CBRE, Colliers Intl, JLL, etc.) have corporate services people who act as management consultants on real estate

Nov 6, 2017

Deloitte has a group

Nov 6, 2017

Depending on the scope of work it would probably be a market analysis, feasibility assessment, etc... Basically find the highest and best use of the property based on a number of factors. Like I said, depending on the scope of work it can range from a simple market analysis to modeling a number of different investment scenarios. Feel free to PM me if this is too broad.

Nov 6, 2017

I agree. Development is all about the "highest and best use."

Jul 21, 2018

Ban dat nen du an tai Dong Nai