Entry-Level Real Estate Jobs? Guaranteed Salaries?

15 Replies

Construction management, structural engineer, civil engineer, assistant project manager for development company, finance analyst are all jobs that probably pay in that salary range.

What did you study in college? The above jobs require usually engineering, finance or construction management degrees

If you’re interested in learning about the commercial side of real estate in hopes to invest commercially in the future, I would look into being a property manager. I worked for a property management company for a while when I first was getting into the industry and learned sooo much regarding commercial leases and spaces. You would be salary or hourly, so you’d have a guaranteed pay.

Benjamin Kleven that’s gonna be tough for the jobs I mentioned. Probably sales, property manager or agent is your best bet

Hey Benjamin,

I work as a real estate sales specialist (earning my Broker's license in November), and it's very difficult to land a well-paying real estate assistance job in San Francisco without prior sales experience or a license. 

If you have your license or plan to get one, it would definitely make it easier to join a team as a buyer's agent/or a real estate assistant (not showing properties/interacting with buyers). Joining a top-producing team would be the challenge since the junior positions are generally filled up pretty quickly. I'd recommend networking with real estate agents that you know or at meetups to see what may be available. 

I've seen some agents hire assistants for 6-12 months, but then had to let them go since the agent wasn't producing the volume necessary to keep an assistant - so that's where the risk of the "guaranteed job" is in this industry. Generally agents who have a full-time buyer's agent or an assistant in the San Francisco need to make around $20m+ in sales a year.

Happy to answer any questions from a brokerage perspective!

Hey Benjamin I would get your R.E License and join RedFin. They’re not your traditional broker but you can make $$ right out the gate and they are definitely in your area with high interest for agents. If you can muster up a 2 week course and take the state test you’ll be an agent in no time. They have two types of agents.. associate agents who just go out and tour homes and employee agents who write the contracts. Lots of growth as well as they a predominantly on the west coast. You can also start at the bottom like I did and start as a temp. for a real estate company. I started as a temp then to a leasing agent then to assistant property manager to a property manager to now owning my own property management company.

Originally posted by @James Charlot :

Hey Benjamin I would get your R.E License and join RedFin. They’re not your traditional broker but you can make $$ right out the gate and they are definitely in your area with high interest for agents. If you can muster up a 2 week course and take the state test you’ll be an agent in no time. They have two types of agents.. associate agents who just go out and tour homes and employee agents who write the contracts. Lots of growth as well as they a predominantly on the west coast. You can also start at the bottom like I did and start as a temp. for a real estate company. I started as a temp then to a leasing agent then to assistant property manager to a property manager to now owning my own property management company.

 Just want to point out a few discrepancies with what James said. In the San Francisco Bay Area, it's completely different. With Redfin, most brokers here don't take you seriously since it is such a demanding boutique market here. You won't get far as a client or an agent with Redfin in SF - there's too many market nuances that a "discount broker" can't provide to you as an agent here. 

Additionally, there's not such thing as "associate agent" or "employee agents" here. Licensed real estate professionals are not employees. We are all independent contractors, so unless you work as a licensed assistant or get a salary from a senior team member (such as where you work just as a buyers agent for a top producer), you are not an employee. ALL agents who are full-time should/and do participate in the weekly Broker Tours, and everyone does/and should write contracts. Those are two activities that all agents perform.

For the Real Estate Salesperson License Exam, you have to take 3 college-level courses (see the CalBRE website), and theres 18 day waiting periods between each exam (although you can finish all of the quizzes at once). Then theres usually a 2-3 month waiting period until your actual test date, and once you're licensed you have to hang your license at a brokerage. 

@Houston Garcia & @Account Closed - I just want to say that everything that I have stated is fact. I actually work for RedFin and that's where I get a majority of my clients for property management. I started out as an "associate agent" in which is an independent contractor position where you set your own schedule and get paid for events that you complete i.e. tours (Majority), deliveries to agents, open houses, attending inspections, etc. I then took the step to an agent with Redfin which I was the main agent for the area I lived in and I was now able to write contracts. I am now an employee with RedFin as a realtor who makes a salary, bonus pay, and benefits. (RedFin is not your traditional Broker FYI). 

For more information on employment please don't hesitate to contact me or visit their job board here (You will be able to view the San Fransico area in seeing the position for the "associate agent" and "agent" position) - https://www.redfin.com/about/jobs/departments/real...

So, Yes you can start off as an "associate agent" and become an "agent" with RedFin. Testing in Cal may be different as I'm not familiar with the Cali R.E process as I in NJ was able to take my class in two weeks and take the state test within a week from that. 

Originally posted by @James Charlot :

@Houston Garcia & @Account Closed - I just want to say that everything that I have stated is fact. I actually work for RedFin and that's where I get a majority of my clients for property management. I started out as an "associate agent" in which is an independent contractor position where you set your own schedule and get paid for events that you complete i.e. tours (Majority), deliveries to agents, open houses, attending inspections, etc. I then took the step to an agent with Redfin which I was the main agent for the area I lived in and I was now able to write contracts. I am now an employee with RedFin as a realtor who makes a salary, bonus pay, and benefits. (RedFin is not your traditional Broker FYI). 

For more information on employment please don't hesitate to contact me or visit their job board here (You will be able to view the San Fransico area in seeing the position for the "associate agent" and "agent" position) - https://www.redfin.com/about/jobs/departments/real...

So, Yes you can start off as an "associate agent" and become an "agent" with RedFin. Testing in Cal may be different as I'm not familiar with the Cali R.E process as I in NJ was able to take my class in two weeks and take the state test within a week from that. 

Ah, I must've misunderstood your post, as I thought you were talking about both models; thanks for clarifying the fine points on the Redfin agent model vs. traditional brokerage model (which is what I've experienced in my career). 

Anywhere other than Redfin (or a similar style brokerage) and you wouldn't get paid a salary or for just going on tour or open houses - wish we could though haha! Its interesting to see how different our brokerage models are, and how our individual markets adapt to these nuances (and vice versa).

A friend of mine who studied engineering is an assistant project manager for a large development company like I said above. He studied engineering like I did though.

If you can land a job like that it’s pretty cool though. They put him in a city near Houston for the next 2 years (pay all his rent etc too) and he’s helping design and build a multimillion dollar hospital complex. They do a lot of commercial and industrial type stuff.

One of my cousins husband works in construction management and they do similar work. If you want real estate I think that’d be super useful as most real estate investors d rehabs st some point

Hey @Account Closed . I mean no disrespect, but what you're asking for is unrealistic. $50k a year for an entry level position just doesn't exist (In most industries where I live). If I remember correctly California has a minimum wage of $15/hr. If that's the case you're looking at making $30,000 a year at minimum. I don't know what your prior work experience is but if this will be your first time job you'll find it a lot harder to get what you're asking for. My recommendation to you would be to find a company with opportunities for advancement that could place you into the real estate industry. Particularly, find a career path that will teach you what you want to learn most. If you want to know more about lending, get a job as a teller and find a way to get into their real estate lending department or commercial lending department. If you want to learn more about fixing a house up, find a job working under a general contractor. If you're wanting to learn about negotiating and the buying process become a real estate agent. The list could go on and. Just ask yourself "What do I want to learn/specialize in and what job can help me get there".

@Benjamin Kleven Hey! I just started my first job as an Analyst for a developer in Southern California, straight out of college. I majored in economics but I think what really helped me was my work experience and skills. I knew I wanted to do development since sophomore year and have been working towards it. My job is a lot more like a corporate finance job (not 9 to 5 - more like 8:30-7:30). It sounds miserable but I’m loving every moment of it. It’s something I’m truly passionate about and I walk in every day with brand new challenges across various asset types, from hotels to multi family to medical offices. Of course, this is very different from what I can invest in now. However, a major perk is I have access to finance people, mortgage people, construction people, city approval people - all in the same office! I definitely plan to ask them for advice. I actually would advise staying away from sales because you’d get stuck doing sales, unless this is what you want. I’m learning so much and I’ve gotten so much better at analysing numbers. This is definitely an advantage I’ll have when I invest in my own properties.