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Master of Science in International Real EstateWhy you should pursue a master’s degree in real estate

Real estate plays a significant role in the global economy. It is by far the most significant store of wealth, representing more than 3.5 times the total global GDP, according to Savills World Research.

The real estate industry has grown exponentially over the past few years, attracting professionals from different backgrounds, including business, economics, finance, engineering, architecture and construction, to name a few.

It’s a lucrative industry and continues to expand, requiring more highly-skilled professionals than ever before.

To meet this demand, universities are providing specialized master's degree programs all over the U.S. They vary in names, including:

  • Master of Science in Real Estate (MSRE)
  • Master of Science in International Real Estate (MSIRE)
  • Master of Science in Real Estate Development (MSRED), and
  • MBA with a concentration in Real Estate

Each program will have different requirements, curriculums, and benefits. So, it's crucial to find the option that fits your own career goals.

Whether you’re in the industry or looking to get started, there are plenty of benefits that come with studying real estate on a graduate level.

1. Advance in a highly-sought out industry

The barriers of entry into the industry are low and, therefore, very attractive to individuals wanting to make a career out of real estate. With just a license, you can begin to conduct business, but that doesn't guarantee you'll be successful or avoid fatal mistakes.

Like most graduate degrees, an MSRE goes beyond credentials. University programs are taught by leading professionals in various segments of real estate who will show you the ins and outs of being successful in this industry. You’ll be better equipped for the tasks and challenges at hand.

If looking to launch your career in the corporate world, a master's degree is your golden ticket to advance into top positions. It demonstrates that you have the passion, dedication and necessary knowledge to excel.

2. Grow your income

Growth of income can come in many ways. If you’re working for a company, a master’s degree in real estate could qualify you to seek a promotion or a higher salary − or both.

If choosing to work as an entrepreneur or off commission, you can take the knowledge and skills learned from an MSRE to make smarter or more substantial investments that could lead you into higher earnings.

3. Learn to avoid legal issues

A vital component of the real estate curriculum is real estate law. You'll learn from current professionals about the laws, rules and regulations made by federal, state, county and local governments, as well as the private law of contracts.

Learning how to assess real estate documents and transactions will help you avoid costly legal mistakes that could have serious consequences.

4. Build a useful network of professionals and mentors

Anyone in the real estate industry will tell you that networking is crucial. Through networking, you will find business partners and mentors in all segments of the industry, from development to finance. Your network will offer invaluable knowledge and opportunities.

Whether you pursue an MSRE in-person or online, it is essential to take time out to attend not only university-organized networking events, but association-organized events. Programs like the Master of Science in International Real Estate (MSIRE) from FIU provide membership into organizations like the International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC) and the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS). These institutions host events and conferences where students and professionals from all over the world have a chance to network and learn.

5. Break into different areas of real estate

A master's degree in real estate opens the door to career opportunities that go beyond buying and selling property. An MSRE's curriculum gives you the knowledge to work in finance, acquisitions, management, advising or development. It touches different segments in the industry and helps you determine your specialty. You can work for yourself or a company. It is a well-rounded education that lets you shape your professional future.

6. Earn a degree and fast-track certifications and licenses

A key benefit of some MSRE programs is the ability to fast-track specific certifications and licenses. Ask an advisor or program manager what your program will prepare you for.

The MSIRE program at FIU will prepare you to become ARGUS certified − a widely-used software in the industry. You’ll also earn substantial credit for the Certified Commercial Investment Member (CCIM) credential, the Appraisal Institute’s MAI designation, and the Florida Real Estate Commission (FREC) courses. These benefits save students a great deal of time and money.

7. Qualified hires are in-demand

According to the latest SelectLeaders Survey, a real estate job network, 58 percent of companies found it difficult to find qualified hires. Most specifically, candidates lacked the needed technical and hands-on skills.

Graduate programs are designed to provide not only advanced knowledge, but hands-on training. You’ll train on different software, attend property tours, compete in case study competitions and have opportunities to complete an internship.

More than just a Graduate Real Estate Degree

As the industry continues to expand and evolve, the opportunities to have a successful career grows. From income to professional networks and certifications, earning a master's degree in real estate is a crucial investment if you want to succeed in the industry, and a great way to get started.

For more information about the types of jobs an MSRE prepares you for,  read "13 Careers to Pursue in Real Estate."

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