Masters in real estate development ?

15 Replies

Does anyone have any input between going to Nova Southeastern University vs University of Miami for Real Estate Development? I know that NSU offers a Masters of Science in RED, and UM offers an MBA in RED + Urbanism. Are there any advantages or disadvantages to each? Does anyone have any personal experience in either program? Thank you for your input

@Drew Bell I have no idea about Florida schools, but I'm just wondering what your background for this study. What course of study is in the program? What's your goal with this degree?

Waste of time.  

Without knowledge of these programs the MBA sounds more versitile but unless you are paying cash for the program - I would be very careful and really evaluate return on investment. Some of these programs are the equivalent of a few small rental properties!

@Julie Marquez Hi Julie, I want to do Project Development/Management in the commercial sector of urban/lower income areas. Of course, I want to own a few rental properties, but I do feel the need to continue my education in Real Estate Development. Some of the courses are RE Finance, RE Markets & Institutions, Advanced REI and Valuation, RE Development, RE Market Analysis, Corporate Financial Management, etc...

No better education than the real world. 

there will be more job options to someone with an MBA

It always interests me that people slam the gurus around here and don't blink at going for a college degree. Many of those people have spent tens of thousands or even hundreds of thousands on a degree that they don't and never will use.

@Drew Bell , I agree with @Lauren Page . Run the numbers and make sure it makes sense. If you just wanted to invest in real estate I would say don't bother. If you want to work for a company that does the things you mentioned then 1) make sure the degree is something that will more likely get you hired and/or paid more and 2) make sure that the benefit is worth the cost in time and money.

For what it's worth, the MBA probably would hold more weight if you decided to do something else or just in general. As would a degree from UM. I do not know about Nova, but I do know that UM is not cheap.

@Drew Bell That all sounds very interesting! Like other said, experience can teach those things too. I got my bachelor degree in construction management, and it was a great, specialized business degree. Not necessary for real estate, but directly related to my project management job now, and I wanted a degree anyway.

@Alex R. I can agree with that in the terms of investments, but not real estate development. Since my career is far away from RED, i definitely have to change my career through education. 

Originally posted by @Alex R. :

No better education than the real world. 

 I can agree with that in the terms of investments, but not real estate development. Since my career is far away from RED, i definitely have to change my career through education.

Originally posted by @Julie Marquez :

@Drew Bell That all sounds very interesting! Like other said, experience can teach those things too. I got my bachelor degree in construction management, and it was a great, specialized business degree. Not necessary for real estate, but directly related to my project management job now, and I wanted a degree anyway.

 That is why i am looking forward to start my career in RED! :) but still keep one foot in investments. I do agree that experience is the best teacher, but its harder to gain that experience with out the education. I've been looking for entry level positions in RED and nobody is trying to hire someone with out a degree in that field. 

Originally posted by @Edward B. :

It always interests me that people slam the gurus around here and don't blink at going for a college degree. Many of those people have spent tens of thousands or even hundreds of thousands on a degree that they don't and never will use.

@Drew Bell, I agree with @Lauren Page . Run the numbers and make sure it makes sense. If you just wanted to invest in real estate I would say don't bother. If you want to work for a company that does the things you mentioned then 1) make sure the degree is something that will more likely get you hired and/or paid more and 2) make sure that the benefit is worth the cost in time and money.

For what it's worth, the MBA probably would hold more weight if you decided to do something else or just in general. As would a degree from UM. I do not know about Nova, but I do know that UM is not cheap.

 Thank you for the great post Edward! Greatly appreciated. I have noticed that UM is a LOT more expensive, so I am currently reviewing the FIU program; which is cheaper then both Nova and UM. 

I got a Bachelors in Marketing and I've been in sales for a number of years now, selling products and services that I'm not fully invested in. Unfortunately, I have gotten stuck in the pattern. SO...I do believe that a Masters in RED is the way to go. 

@Drew Bell I would heed the warnings of the people about the degree. Florida pay scale sucks so getting an advanced degree might be a burden as oppose to a help. I am looking for a job in RED as well. I was advised to take courses instead of getting a full MBA. I plan on taking courses online from U Penn or Illinois (still researching) and getting certificates. That way I have something to show without going into anymore debt. I currently work in construction management.  

I'm part of the ULI mentor group in San Francisco and the top local developers suggest working for a developer in anyway possible and if that doesn't work, get a MBA or Masters in Real Estate Development to get in.  You get to learn all the facets of the industry and you can branch off after a few years.  

There are a few developers that I have come across that said you don't have to get a degree and work with a developer. But these developers have worked in real estate finance roles such as acquisitions or as a full on developer associate.  The developer who was in acquisitions at an energy company obtained his education through fortune builders and ULI.  The other developer was a developer associate at Greystar so he knew everything already and just jumped right into his first two developments. They both develop mixed use developments.

Since you have a good sales career, maybe becoming a commercial real estate agent would be something you can look into.

If your aiming for residential development of houses, the degree is a total waste of time.  

Try wallstreetoasis.com for more advice on development in the Real Estate finance forum!

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