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Best Master's Degrees in Real Estate

Apr 13, 2021

Master's Degrees for Real Estate

Have an interest in Real Estate and want to go further? This article will cover what all come with pursuing a graduate degree in Real Estate.

What is Real Estate?

Real Estate deals with property and land. Real estate agents sell or acquire land for clients and buyers. Residential, commercial, and land are the three main focuses for real estate.

  • Residential: Selling of homes, condos, apartments, and so forth
  • Commercial: Buildings or any place where business can be conducted. Think along the lines of strip malls and warehouses.
  • Land: A piece of land with no value that can be sold and use. Land real estate does generate revenue until something is built on it.

Master's Degrees in Real Estate

Like real estate, the postgraduate programs are vast and detailed. There are multiple different master's degree programs in real estate, a Master of Business Administration or Master of Science. Each degree caters to a different method of real estate, which can help students narrow down their path in real estate.

To get an M.B.A or M.S. in Real Estate, students will need to pass a standardized test depending on the college of their choosing. The GMAT, GRE, EA, and TOEFL are tests that students need to prepare for when applying for their master's program. The two tests that should be at the of the top list when applying are the GMAT and GRE; colleges will decide the minimum score for students. For international students, the TOEFL, or The Test Of English As a Foreign Language, will need to be taken as well.

Another common method of testing in graduate programs is capstone projects or thesis. These are normally compiled into one-semester to two-semester-long courses. Real Estate degrees are particularly hands-on, and most programs expect students to have some form of experience when they start the graduate program.

Master's in Business Administration in Real Estate

The length required to finish an MBA in Real Estate varies from 32 to 69 credit hours between colleges. Some colleges prefer that real estate courses be taken as electives, while others have created an entire curriculum. Students that are concerned about the length and detail of their college's program may have to call ahead before applying. Most colleges prefer to call real estate a concentration, and very few have an undergraduate program available. Most MBA programs start teaching the basics of real estate during the first year of study.

However, colleges that do offer an in-depth curriculum have created foundational courses for students to take. These foundational courses help students pick their future electives as well as decide on a career path.

Course Description
Real Estate Finance and Investment Cover commercial real estate finance and investing, from loan structures to valuation of property.
Finance II More in-depth look at how assets should be valued.
Financial Modeling Learning how to model mergers, valuations, buyouts, and acquisitions with spreadsheets.
Real Estate Law Learning the law of legal real estate transactions and the importance of the leases, loans, mortgages, etc.

More common courses and electives offered in an MBA in Real Estate will teach students more about the financial and technical aspects when selling property. Most graduate electives will need prerequisites, and students should keep that in mind.

Course Description
Valuation The fundamentals of real estate as an industry and the proper use of discounted cash flow.
Real Estate Development The entrepreneurial aspect of real estate, touching on the topic of marketing, construction management, joint ventures, etc.
Real Estate Development Lab Depending on the college, students will participate in lengthy projects, work alongside architectures, or gain office experience.
Securities The study of the financial market within the real estate industry and how cash flow can be connected to property.

Master of Science in Real Estate

This degree is more competitive compared to the MBA. Colleges take grade point average and tests into heavy consideration when applying. To qualify for this degree, a student will need a minimum GPA of 3.0. Students' GRE and GMAT scores should also be above the 30th percentile when applying. Again, colleges and their requirements may vary. If students have more questions surrounding admissions, it is best to call the college of their choice before sending in an application.

The Master of Science is specific, and depending on the college, may include concentrations. The core or foundational courses introduce real estate in an analytical approach compared to an MBA. This degree covers the basics of real estate as well as how to manage property and the environment. Zoning, construction, and planning are included in the curriculum, along with fundamental courses. These are a few common courses:

Course Description
Real Estate Appraisal Can be taught as a seminar course or as a regular course. Students will learn about income forecasting and the capitalization of property.
Real Estate Development The entrepreneurial aspect of real estate, touching on the topic of marketing, construction management, joint ventures, etc.
Residential Development Prepares students for buying residential properties. Teaches students about zoning, construction, special needs for families, and more.
Real Estate Investment or Real Estate Investment Analysis Will help students understand the importance of the financial factors and techniques of real estate.

The electives offered through the Master of Science are like the Master of Business Administration. These courses are to further student's understanding of the construction and financial needs that go into owning and selling property.

  • Real Estate Market and Transaction Analysis
  • Investment Theory and Problems
  • Real Estate Law
  • Property Risk Management
  • Real Estate Research and Technology
  • Entrepreneurial Financial Management

Real Estate Certifications and License

A certification or license can be earned at a community college or real estate school. There are a select few universities that offer certificates and licenses within their programs. It should be noted that a certificate and license title are similar but have one major difference. A certificate holder needs to be employed under an agent. A certificate holder can perform any tasks a license holder can as they have an employer.

Getting a certification or license is also influenced by the state in which the student resides. Each state can have a set criterion in earning a certificate or license.

What Can You Do with A Master's in Real Estate?

Real Estate is more than buying and selling property. The steps involved in the real estate business themselves can be seen as jobs. From appraising property to being a broker. There is more to meet the eye when it comes to real estate. The field of real estate incorporates numerous business characteristics when buying and selling properties. When selling and buying property, there is documentation and planning before the transaction. Clients must complete multiple processes and meet the criteria necessary to own property.

The outlook for the real estate field is positive. With a small two percent increase in the job market, it may not seem that way. However, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics is reporting a soon-to-be high demand for real estate jobs. There is an increase in people living in building and single-family homes. With the growth in housing demands and buildings, property managers, appraisers, agents, and developers create jobs. With a Master's in Business Administration, the average income salary was $102,138, with the highest paying job being a real estate development manager. Whereas having a Master's in Science median income salary is significantly lower at $76,401.

Job Description
Property Manager In charge of either commercial or residential property and manages multiple departments. Property managers will perform periodic inspections to make sure everything runs smoothly. The average salary for a property manager is $50,262.
Real Estate Broker This job requires a license. A real estate broker aids in selling property to buyers. They take into consideration all assets of the property before trying to sell it. They meet with buyers and perform market research and price agreements to close deals. There is also documentation to ensure accurate listings on properties. They find homes for their clients and advertise them as well. The average salary for this job is $56,392.
Real Estate Appraiser Will assess the value of the property that is being sold for clients. Their clients are often agents, and they can also perform inspections on the properties. They can appraise both residential and commercial properties, and it can take some time. Appraisers look at every detail and flaw of the property. The average salary for this job is $60,438.
Real Estate Development Manager Will take care of the everyday task needed for real estate development. Will collaborate with architects and meet with clients. The main job of the manager is to make sure that everything is to the client's liking. Great customer service skills are required for this job. The average salary for this job is $96,039.

Financial Aid, Scholarships, and Grants

Colleges can offer program-specific grants and scholarships to students. Scholarships that are given through college require specific criteria. Colleges have grants that are catered toward graduate students as well. For example, No InterWiki reference defined in properties for Wiki called "Universityhttp"! offers a grant of $1500 a semester for graduate students that qualify. Students can inquire about scholarships through their colleges by talking with their admission office or advisor.

FAFSA is a reliable way for students to receive aid in paying for school. FAFSA offers grants that do not need to be paid back. The Pell Grant is a well-known grant provided by FAFSA to low-income students. The amount rewarded is based on their income and will be awarded each semester. FAFSA needs to be renewed each academic year to qualify for any grants, loans, or scholarships.

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