Real Estate Post MBA

WSO,

I currently work in a sales capacity at a large Investment Management / Mutual Fund company. I am about to be promoted to an external wholesaler which would be a nice bump in pay and lifestyle.

I am hoping to get my mba and transition into a strong REPE or RE acquisitions job. Assuming I go to a T15 - T20 MBA program is this a reasonable career change? It seems that prior real estate experience is highly preferred for post MBA RE jobs. Should I work in and RE IB group for a few years before moving over? Is that a better way to go about this?

My interest in real estate has grown after I recently flipped a property here in TX and we have a REIT fund that is quite strong so as part of my job I end up speaking to and following the industry quite closely. I figure my relationship building skills would be transferable to the RE world as well as my capital raising ability.

I figure I want to end up on the west coast. So UCLA, Haas, Marshall, or McCombs? Probably not there in stats for GSB.

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Comments (5)

Feb 15, 2017 - 12:38pm

Full disclosure: I am at one of the T15-20 RE MBA programs you mentioned above now, and considered REIB for a short while during my first year.

REPE and acquisitions gigs are the most sought after coming out of b-school. It would be a tough move but not impossible. If you're not dead set on BX or the other megafund shops, you could surely land yourself a nice gig at a regional firm. If you have a brand name firm on your resume now, and are strong with underwriting/modeling, your chances would improve. REIB (other than Eastdil) is very different than REPE as you are essentially the capital markets shop for REIT's and COMPANIES....REPE is where you are 99% of the time looking at asset level deals only (and sometimes investments in RE companies too if you're at a large shop who does this). REPE shops recruit out of IB ANALYST programs for the most part, and I was told early on that making the jump to REPE after REIB post MBA would be like swimming up a river. It can be done, and most easily if you have friends that work in REPE firms. Your experience sounds as though you could target a summer gig/full time in institutional real estate investment (or REPE) and I was told to just go for it rather than REIB if I knew I 100% wanted to work with buildings as opposed to companies (which REIB strictly does). Hope this helps, feel free to PM for more info.

Feb 16, 2017 - 8:30am
cpgame:

Full disclosure: I am at one of the T15-20 RE MBA programs you mentioned above now, and considered REIB for a short while during my first year.

REPE and acquisitions gigs are the most sought after coming out of b-school. It would be a tough move but not impossible. If you're not dead set on BX or the other megafund shops, you could surely land yourself a nice gig at a regional firm. If you have a brand name firm on your resume now, and are strong with underwriting/modeling, your chances would improve. REIB (other than Eastdil) is very different than REPE as you are essentially the capital markets shop for REIT's and COMPANIES....REPE is where you are 99% of the time looking at asset level deals only (and sometimes investments in RE companies too if you're at a large shop who does this). REPE shops recruit out of IB ANALYST programs for the most part, and I was told early on that making the jump to REPE after REIB post MBA would be like swimming up a river. It can be done, and most easily if you have friends that work in REPE firms. Your experience sounds as though you could target a summer gig/full time in institutional real estate investment (or REPE) and I was told to just go for it rather than REIB if I knew I 100% wanted to work with buildings as opposed to companies (which REIB strictly does). Hope this helps, feel free to PM for more info.

I'm a first year on the balance sheet lending side. I know i'll have to make a decision in about two-three years whether to stay on the lending side (as I'll be a relationship manager) long term or transition across to REPE or development. I've always been driven towards that side and pretty much everyone else is.

Now, I know for the region I'd like to settle down into, a lot of the executives and management are Marshall MBA/MSRE/MRED guys.

From having experience on the lending side, would it be a little pointless to go pursue a MBA to transition? Is having experience on one side of the table worth enough to forego the degree? Or will it be necessary potential to make the transition if I so choose?

Feb 16, 2017 - 9:18am

I couldn't tell you if it's better or worse than a bulge bracket but you will be working on asset level deals...and interacting with top REPE firms and developers looking to buy/sell/raise equity or debt.

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