What Could an MBA Do for a Career in Property? | TopMBA.com

What Could an MBA Do for a Career in Property?

By Niamh O

Updated September 4, 2019 Updated September 4, 2019

Investing in bricks and mortar has long been a popular way to build up a financial portfolio, and now Real Estate MBAs seem to be in a state of boom too, with students choosing more niche specializations than the traditional generalized finance track.

But how are MBAs utilizing their MBA programs to create worthwhile careers in property? Read on to find out more.

Real estate within finance

The finance sector boasts multiple industries under its specialized umbrella.

In fact, property is now such an important part of the finance sector and overall economy, it’s only natural that more business schools have created real estate MBA programs. With the increasing level of job opportunities available to graduates demonstrating why schools are adding more real estate programs.

Graduates have a number of real estate career paths they can venture down including mortgage-backed securities and housing, property portfolio management, and investment banking.

What you’ll learn on a program

Students undertaking an MBA with a focus in property will garner specialized knowledge in the field.

Once graduated, MBAs will be able to apply to principles related to real estate, land and property laws, construction technology, property development process, environment laws, planning, property management, and investment.

Graduates will be savvy in real estate related competencies. They will be confident in gathering information for market analysis, as well as managing property portfolios for clients.

Real estate experts also need to measure land and property to analyze how feasible development will be. Other skills will include inspecting landmass and producing valuations to ensure the client gets the best deal for their investment.

Summer internships

During the summer break before their second year, MBA students are implored to undergo extensive internships that will help them progress in their desired field post-graduation.

If your summer internship can be paired with your school’s Elective Curriculum modules, it will help you develop the fluency and confidence to take your first step into a career in real estate.

There may be difficulties for career switches

Due to strong relationships and networks associated with local markets, the level of specialized roles available, and the somewhat skeptical approach the industry has towards professionals switching careers, it could be difficult to break into real estate from another career path.

However, there is a lot to be said about demonstrating commitment and enthusiasm to help make the transition easier.

MBA students could attend trade events and workshops, participate in case competitions, or develop actionable approaches on property trends in a given market.

Relationships in the property sector take time to build, but with a touch of ‘hustle’ paired with tenacity, commitment, and enthusiasm, you’ll have broken into the industry in no time.

Discover why Real Estate MBA programs boomed here

Real Estate MBAs

The Wharton School

Wharton has offered its real estate major since 1985. The major has two required credit units and three electives – the required courses focus on real estate development and finance, whereas electives enable students to explore a variety of real estate related issues.

For example, one Wharton module is Global Real Estate which focuses on income-producing real estate assets. Other electives focus on real estate economies, urban fiscal policy, real estate law and more.

Students can utilize Wharton’s Real Estate Department and the Zell and Robert Lurie Real Estate Center to keep informed on current issues in real estate through special programs, conferences and seminars.

UCLA Anderson School of Management

UCLA Anderson’s general MBA curriculum has integrated an eight-course real estate specialization should you wish to pursue a career in this field.

Topics include entrepreneurial real estate development, real estate law and taxation, and securitization.

Coursework for the program is created through the Ziman Center for Real Estate which puts on conferences and produces a huge range of research throughout the year.  

McDonough School of Business

The MBA program at Georgetown McDonough has a specialization in real estate, and also gives students the chance to work with the Steers Center for Global Estate.

McDonough’s real estate MBA could be described as a boutique program which offers insight into global relationships in the private sector.

The curriculum features eight courses, with coursework including Real Estate Private Equity, Real Estate Public Debt, Real Estate Clinic and more.

Columbia Business School

The big apple has got to be one of the best places to study real estate, right? Columbia offers a real estate focus on its MBA programs, incorporating global and local themes throughout the curriculum.

Columbia’s Paul Milstein Center for Real Estate produces the real estate program thanks to top academics and industry leaders working together.

Why is real estate so highly valued?

This article was originally published in September 2019 .

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Written by

Niamh is Deputy Head of Content at QS (TopMBA.com; topuniversities.com), creating and editing content for an international student audience. Having gained her journalism qualification at the Press Association, London and since written for different international publications, she's now enjoying telling the stories of students, alumni, faculty, entrepreneurs and organizations from across the globe.