To all the commercial real estate brokers out much money do you make?

Just curious, to all the commercial real estate brokers out there--how much money are you earning a year.

Answer format below

  • Product Type
  • Investment Sales or Leasing
  • Geography (City, State or Region)
  • Commission after company and team splits
  • Company split %
  • Team split %
  • Number of years in the business

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Comments (37)

Jul 19, 2017 - 10:12am

**** Honestly this is a lot of work to fill out, it varies a lot from year to year.

EDIT: Alright I've had my coffee, I'll help.

Market: Large West Coast City. (Seattle, Portland, SF, LA, San Diego, Phoenix, Denver, Las Vegas)
Product Types: Retail, Office, Industrial
Role: Sales and Leasing
Splits: Depends a lot on the deal, not usually that great
Team: Just me lol
Pay first 12 months: $28k?
Pay second 12 Months: Maybe like $70k
Pay third 12 months: in progress
Years in Business: 2

Jul 19, 2017 - 9:46am

This is from 2012-2013 back when I was in the used car business.

  • Product Type Office
  • Investment Sales or Leasing Leasing
  • Geography (City, State or Region) Mid-Atlantic
  • Commission after company and team splits $15,000
  • Company split % 50%/50%
  • Team split % 60%/30%/10% (I was the 10%)
  • Number of years in the business 1 and it was awful. Much prefer being on the ownership side.

Commercial Real Estate Developer

  • 3
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Best Response
Oct 9, 2017 - 3:50pm

Definitely took a haircut on total compensation and lifestyle. There were a few reasons why:

  1. Did not find brokerage intellectually stimulating, personally. Every deal has the same ten steps with minor variations and I was already bored after a year and a half. Not a good sign for career longevity at 23.
  2. Income potential is lower and effectively capped. Top leasing guys make $1-2M a year at the best stages of their career. That is obviously big money, but there is bigger upside potential on the principal side with promote structures.
  3. Geographic limitation. This was a big one. IMO the vast majority of your relevance and worth in brokerage is based on your local market knowledge and relationships. Brokering deals is not that complicated. If you leave that market you can be rendered useless, unless you have crazy relationships with large national firms.
  4. Also just an opinion, but did not think brokerage was particularly fulfilling. I did not want to just make money in exchange for helping clients have better occupancy. Working for a developer and building a 50-60 year asset from dirt is a fulfilling experience.
Feb 26, 2018 - 10:24pm
  • Product Type Office/Industiral
  • Investment Sales or Leasing Both
  • Geography (City, State or Region) West Coast major market
  • Commission after company and team splits started 7/2017 and made $3,000 for my first 6 months. Estimating $75-$150,000 for 2018. No idea what will come in the following years.
  • Company split % 50%/50%
  • Team split % 5% to 15% when I am the runner. 50% to 80% when I bring in the deal.
  • Number of years in the business Less than one year. Spent 5 years as an CRE broker analyst/acquisitions analyst.
Feb 26, 2018 - 10:55pm

No income to report, but I thought this was funny and made sense. Somebody told me this the other day...."there are no struggling brokers in the business who have been in the industry for more than 5 years. If your in the industry for longer than five years and have not yet quit, then your decent at it and are making decent income. Most brokers quit within 5 years and find something else to do that is worthy of their time"

Aug 22, 2019 - 11:55am

Would like to get this thread revamped or if any of the original contributors are still in brokerage and wouldn't mind providing an update. Sounded like several were in year 2 or 3 back in 2017. I wish I had info to offer, but like many of you brokerage is something I'm considering a change to, and the 'eat what you kill' & high ceiling are a big draw for me.

Would also love to PM anyone willing to share any information regarding brokerage.

Aug 22, 2019 - 6:55pm

Asked my older brother and he gave me the following. He works at one of the bigger IS/D/E brokerages or REIBs. He says he didn't start primarily as an originator, but for the deals he does originate, he's pretty happy with.

Product Type - Hospitality, Office, Retail

Investment Sales or Leasing - D/E Placement, Investment Sales

Geography (City, State or Region) - Nationwide, but works out of West Coast office

Commission after company and team splits - 200k base + % commission on deals originated ($100-300k)

Company split % - 50%/50%

Team split % - 80%/15%/5% (15 & 5 to the AVP and associate on the deal, respectively)

Number of years in the business - 15

  • 1
Aug 23, 2019 - 11:48am

Who exactly do D/E brokers sell to? Most of my researching/reading to this point has been on CRE brokerage (leasing/IS), not necessarily D/E placement- which is essentially lending? Forgive me if I have misunderstood completely.

Aug 23, 2019 - 1:36pm

Good D/E brokers have relationships that I don't have. We usually go to the same people for equity, but for debt we make a packet and our rockstar debt broker goes to NYC and comes back with a ton of options. His ability to pick up the phone and call decision makers directly makes him worth whatever we pay him.

Commercial Real Estate Developer

  • 2
Aug 25, 2019 - 12:23pm

Debt brokers arrange debt financing for borrowers. Equity brokers arrange equity financing for a fund or specific deal.

They provide value to their client by getting them the best terms possible. It can really vary the extent to which the broker is involved in the deal.

I'm a lender and we've had some deals where we communicated with the broker maybe 40% and the borrower 60% of the time, and others where we spoke to the broker 90% of the time and the client 10% of the time.

The D/E broker gets paid for their services by their client who is the borrower or firm raising equity. They are their client's agent and are paid to provide them the best terms possible.

Aug 23, 2019 - 1:25pm

Product Type Retail/Office/Industrial

Investment Sales or Leasing Both

Geography (City, State or Region) Southeast Tertiary Market

Commission after company and team splits Last 6 Months of 2016 - $3,000; 2017 -$49,000 (Got picked up by a team); 2018- $75,000; 2019- $80,000 thru August should close 2019 with close to $200K

Company split % 35% to company and gradually decrease once you hit $115k

Team split % 25%. 50% when I bring in the deal.
Number of years in the business: 5 years with 3 as a full-time broker

Aug 23, 2019 - 3:31pm

Brokerage comp is still so strange, yet so exciting (knowing the potential, and understanding there are far more brokers that flop): 1. $25k 2. $31k 3. $100k 4. $189k etc... When you say you ' got picked up by a team', what exactly do you mean by that? I was under the impression that most brokers starting out will join a team as either an analyst, or junior broker with unfavorable splits until you prove you can grow the pie. How many deals did you close to put you on target for $200k?

Aug 24, 2019 - 2:35pm

Also interested in what you mean by being picked up by a team.

I interviewed with a firm in Boston recently and it was very team-centric. As in the first chat was with the associate and then the MD etc. Must be super wack to join a firm and not have a team or leadership. How'd that work?

Aug 25, 2019 - 12:42pm

Would be curious as to how this looks for other brokers. From a buddy based in NYC (outer boroughs) who does middle market IS (mostly multifamily, but some retail and development sights). Average experience of his team is around 5 years.

Total Volume 30,000,000

Total Number of Deals Done 16

Average Deal Size 1,875,000

Total Fees 1,800,000.00

Split 50/50

Total After Split 900,000.00

Team Split 4 person team each getting 25%

Income 225,000.00

  • Associate 2 in RE - Comm
Aug 26, 2019 - 3:24pm

Product Type: Office/Industiral/MOBInvestment Sales or Leasing: IS and Tenant RepGeography (City, State or Region): Midwest Major MarketComp: 1st year $50k base w/ $1,500 spot bonus per deal ($55-$60k total); 2nd Year $55k base with 1% of gross commissions ($65-$70k); 3rd Year $60k base w/ 2%-5% of gross commissions ($85-$100k)Company split: Base Salary with spot bonus paid upon closing of each deal (1%-5%); 20% if I originate the dealNumber of years in the business: 3I recently took a new job on the ownership side working as an Acquisitions/Asset Management Analyst making $90k base with 25% bonus.

Jul 17, 2020 - 8:13am

When I got to New York, I had no place to sleep. The pay from 'Sesame Street' wasn't enough to rent an apartment. I was staying on people's couches. I stayed in the dressing room until they found out. I stayed with Jim Henson and his family for a week, and I wanted to do that permanently. I didn't dare ask, though.

Jul 17, 2020 - 8:25am

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