Job insights: what to expect as a commercial real estate agent

Do you have an affinity for analysing data and thrive in quickly evolving work environments? If so, you may be interested in entering a career as a commercial real estate agent. Selling commercial property can be far more complex than selling or leasing residential units, so it’s important to understand the role's unique demands before coming on board.

Hamburg - Job insights: what to expect as a commercial real estate agent

A day in the life of a commercial real estate agent

What with large transactions to broker, cash flows for new property developments to project and multi-family properties to manage, there's plenty on the commercial real estate agenda to keep you both interested and occupied. 

What tends to distinguish commercial real estate agent routines from residential ones is the data-driven aspect of it. A commercial buyer will expect demographic breakdowns, analyses of all relevant tax and zoning laws, and financial data reports. As a result, a commercial agent will need to be a master of statistical analysis, cold calling, networking and market research. They may also oversee property inspections or arrange financing, while assessing a client’s competition all in the same day. 

Most agents work in large metropolitan firms or smaller suburban brokerages. Our commercial agents spend a great deal of time out in the field, chasing up on leads and having one-on-one meetings with clients.

Real estate agent commercial qualifications

When researching how to become a commercial real estate agent, you may notice there's a list of relevant qualifications that need to be obtained first, including an undergraduate degree in real estate. Those with business backgrounds may bypass this with commercial real estate courses at a consecutive education level, typically culminating in a written exam in order to become licensed. A full understanding of finance, tax law, economics and statistics is also useful, as is an ongoing interest in reading trade publications and attending conferences. At Engel & Völkers, we offer targeted training to advance your commercial career at any level.

Picking the right commercial niche

One of the most important decisions you can make when launching a commercial real estate agent career is choosing a niche. The world of commercial real estate is vast, encompassing land and property management, office spaces, industrial zones, investment portfolios and retail developments.

The right fit will depend on your passions and background. For example, if you have the patience to become an expert on zoning laws and government agencies, industrial real estate may be the perfect area for you. On the other hand, if you are highly social and willing to become acquainted with a wide range of tenants in commercial spaces, retail could be a better fit.

Characteristics of a commercial agent

Some real estate agents excel in residential markets, while others are tailor-made for a commercial career. To achieve success in this industry, you’ll need a specific set of skills and personal qualities, including the ability to analyse data and crunch numbers quickly. You must be willing and able to multitask, and have a natural affinity for customer service and sales without being shy about cold calling or networking. Opportunities (and clients) come and go quickly in commercial real estate, so those who hesitate will get left behind.

If you’re in search of a fast-paced career with significant earnings and growth potential, learning how to become a commercial real estate agent could be the perfect path for you.

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