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All About Careers in Real Estate Acquisitions

Real Estate Acquisitions professionals are generally responsible for helping source, analyze, perform due diligence on, and negotiate the purchase of new equity investments for their real estate investment firms. It’s important to note that acquisitions professionals generally pursue existing properties (either stabilized or unstabilized properties) whereas real estate development professionals pursue new build opportunities.

Search our list of jobs in acquisitions and dispositions or use our advanced search page.

Typical Titles

Jobs titles for this position might include Acquisitions: Analyst, Senior Analyst, Associate , Senior Associate, Director, Vice President, Executive Director, Managing Director among others.

Where They Work

Public equity, private equity, and family offices hire acquisitions professionals to assist in building their portfolio of equity investments. Life insurance companies, endowments, pension funds, sovereign wealth funds and other large institutional investors may also have acquisitions professionals on their payroll to either vet deals brought to them by sponsors and/or purchase wholly-owned equity investments for their own account.

General Duties and Responsibilities

Duties and responsibilities of professionals working in acquisitions might include screening potential investments; applying assumptions and using tools such as Excel and ARGUS to value and stress-test prospective investments; performing market research; communicating with and negotiating letters of intent and purchase and sale agreements with brokers, sellers, and attorneys; preparing for and presenting proposed investments to investment committee; among other tasks.

Common Requirements

For junior level positions (Analyst, Senior Analyst), requirements generally include a Bachelor’s degree in Real Estate, Finance, Economics or a related discipline.  A strong proficiency in Microsoft Excel, Word, Powerpoint, with experience in ARGUS a plus. Acquisitions analysts should have the ability to create or manipulate complex real estate and partnership financial models, including discounted cash flows, preferred returns, waterfalls,

For Associate and Senior Associate level positions, employers typically expect either an advanced degree (e.g. MBA in Real Estate or a Masters in Real Estate) and/or three to five years of experience in real estate. At this level, the employer expects the candidate to not only have mastered those skills required of the analyst but to also have excellent verbal and written communication skills, the ability to juggle multiple tasks at once and to properly prioritize deadlines, assignments, and workload.

Professionals at the director level and above are hired for being astute acquisitions professionals, having honed their skills and knowledge of a particular property type and/or geographic knowledge. With 5 – 10+ years of experience, they’ve built an extensive network from which to find new investment opportunities for their firm.

How Much do Real Estate Acquisitions Professionals Make?

See our section on salaries in real estate for more information.

Keys to Success

Successful Real Estate Acquisitions professionals are most often outgoing, goal-oriented, results-driven, quantitative-minded individuals with strong connections, in-depth understanding of real estate valuation principles, and a passion for or a deep knowledge of a specific property type or geographic market.