Looking at today’s seller’s market, it’s hard to miss the opportunities that might come your way just by obtaining a real estate market – especially if you are looking to leave behind your 9-5 life and build a new career.
However, according to the National Association of Realtors (NAR), in 2021, the number of realtors operating in the US reached an all-time high of 1.56 million. As the competition gets fiercer by the minute, choosing the right real estate career path can offer you a unique competitive edge. Find inspiration below.
Different Career Paths in Real Estate
Residential or Commercial Real Estate Agent
Once you have completed your education and obtained your license, the most straightforward option is to become a real estate agent. Offering an average base salary of $94,836, plenty of flexibility, and the chance to build a robust network, this job position is often considered a great entry point in the world of real estate.
Depending on your preferences and skills, you can specialize in helping homebuyers and families find their dream home (residential real estate) or assisting business owners in choosing secure and convenient commercial premises (commercial real estate).
Some of the core tasks an estate agent is responsible for include:
- Researching the different neighborhoods
- Reviewing statistics about crime, footfall, and house prices
- Facilitating the selling and buying process
Commercial real estate will also be required to have business analytical knowledge and familiarity with indicators like capitalization rates and rates of return.
Some other industry niches include vacation homes, luxury properties, rentals, and corporate relocations.
- Pro tip – while real estate agent and real estate broker are two terms often used interchangeably, they describe different positions. Usually, real estate agents are those who work for a brokerage. Oppositely, brokers can either work independently or start their brokerage firm.
Real Estate Appraiser
A real estate appraiser is a professional figure in charge of collecting information about a certain property and assessing its worth and market value. Appraisers tend to split their day at work between office-based and on-field tasks, and can work privately or for a firm.
Their expertise usually comes into play in a variety of scenarios, including:
- During a property’s selling or buying process
- During the process of securing a mortgage or home loan
- When a property is assessed to determine its tax value
If you are considering this career path, you’ll need to start by choosing a school to become an appraiser, undergo specialized training, and, in some states, obtain a real estate license.
While this might sound like a long journey, don’t forget that experienced appraisers earn, on average, over $100,000 a year!
Real Estate Investor or Developer
If you are looking to build long-term wealth and you have the capital necessary to buy real estate properties, you might consider becoming an investor or developer. There are various options to accomplish this.
For example, if you are looking for a hands-off approach, you might consider passively putting money into a real estate project. Alternatively, you could buy land or plots to be developed into residential or commercial properties.
If you desire a more hands-on approach and have a knack for renovations and design, becoming a “house flipper” is a great way to scout inexpensive or run-down properties, upgrade them, and sell them at a higher price.
Real estate represents one of the safest long-term investments, especially in today’s high inflation market. But don’t forget that, due to the large amount of money involved, investing in real estate can be very risky if you are not familiar with fields like civil engineering, or urban planning.
If you come from a background in management or have experience in managerial roles, you can pivot to the world of real estate by becoming a property manager.
Property managers are responsible for ensuring that a certain property runs smoothly and complies with the local and national regulations. In the case of corporate real estate, you might also be in charge of managing the commercial space.
Other Real Estate Career Paths Worth Considering
One of the most appealing aspects of starting a career in real estate is that you can pivot from any background and find lucrative uses for the expertise you already have. Depending on your educational and professional background, you mich also find success in one of the niche roles below:
- Real estate marketing specialist – marketing skills are essential for anyone working in real estate. However, if you have studied to become a marketer, you can apply your knowledge to the world of real estate and help agents and sellers market their properties.
- Foreclosure specialist or loan officer – if you have experience in the financial industry or loan brokerage, you can use your skills to facilitate the buying and selling process of properties from a financial viewpoint.
- Real estate attorney – with a background in law, you’ll find plenty of options to build a career in real estate. For example, you could advocate for the rights of buyers or tenants or overlook the legal aspect of real estate transactions.
A career coach can help you understand what career in real estate best suits your strengths and goals.