What Role do Financial Careers have in Commercial Real Estate? 

In our global economy, it’s impossible to buy, sell or develop commercial property without financing. Because of this, there are a wide range of finance career options in commercial real estate (or CRE). 

From investment to property evaluation to lending, skilled finance professionals are necessary every step of the way. You may choose to start your CRE career with a bank, lending institution, or insurance company depending on your focus.  

Responsibilities in this industry vary depending on what kind of an institution you work for, and your specific role. At a high level, expect your CRE career to involve analyzing properties and clients, monitoring for signs of fraud, and overseeing processes to ensure legal protocols are followed. 

Read on to learn more about specific duties, career options, and education requirements for CRE careers. 

commercial real estate

What Finance Career Options Are Available in Commercial Real Estate? 

CRE career options include: 

Commercial Real Estate Underwriter 

An underwriter analyzes management capabilities of a client/borrower, the collateral real estate intended for the proposed loan, and the effectiveness of the loan’s structure. To fill this role, you must be extremely detail-oriented. You’ll also most likely need 3-5 years of commercial real estate experience. 

Investor Services Associate 

Investor services associates oversee payoffs, payments, remitting, and reports for multiple investors every month. They’re also responsible for accuracy and timely delivery. To fill this role, you must be very familiar with major US financing entities and how they operate. You’ll also need a bachelor’s degree and 3-5 years of finance experience. 

Portfolio Manager 

As a portfolio manager, you’ll supervise clients’ accounts and review remittance/reconciliation requests. To fill this role, you must multi-task very well. You’ll also need 5-10 years of financial industry experience, but not specifically commercial real estate finance. This position is typically a bit easier to break into than others. 

Commercial Property Mortgage Broker 

Commercial property mortgage brokers sell business owners their commercial mortgages. You’re the go-between for both the bank and client. To fill this role, you must have a great memory of the legal and financial aspects of commercial mortgages. You’ll also need 3-5 years of real estate industry experience, and a license from the National Mortgage Licensure System. 

Commercial Mortgage Loan Analyst 

A commercial mortgage loan analyst does analyses of underwriting, appraisals, surveys, reports, loans, and leases. You’ll work more “behind the scenes” in this role compared to a portfolio manager or mortgage broker. To fill this role, you must be intimately familiar with the protocols and requirements of the commercial real estate industry. You’ll most likely need 2-4 years of experience in commercial real estate finance, specifically. 

Commercial Real Estate Investment Analyst 

Commercial real estate investment analysts underwrite, prepare reports, conduct market research, coordinate loan closings, and routinely analyze internal functions. If you enjoy being involved in the full process, you’ll thrive in this role. To be considered, you’ll need 2-3 years of CREF experience and a relevant bachelor’s degree. 

Commercial Real Estate Loan Officer 

As a commercial real estate loan officer, you’ll grow, underwrite, manage, and coordinate a business’s commercial real estate portfolio. If you enjoy underwriting or portfolio management and want to move up the ladder, this is the role for you. To fill this role, you’ll need to be comfortable and capable with commercial loans and assets. You’ll most likely need 4-6 years of experience in commercial real estate finance to be considered for this position. 

What Responsibilities Come with a Commercial Real Estate Career? 

Commercial real estate finance professionals should be capable of the following tasks: 

  • Leading due diligence calls and processes
  • Taking ownership of an existing portfolio and being prepared to take on new accounts
  • Completing yearly reviews of non-material and material modifications
  • Monitoring for compliance with credit procedures and policies
  • Participating in internal reviews to ensure the business is running efficiently
  • Reviewing potential clients and their assets to determine risk potential
  • Monitoring your organization’s loan pipeline

Your exact daily duties will depend on which career you pursue. Regardless of which specific role you pursue, you’ll need to develop several crucial skills: 

Management and Leadership 

No matter which career path you follow, you’ll be expected to meet very high expectations. Commercial real estate finances are handled by the biggest, longest-standing institutions in the world… and they need you to represent their values. You’ll be expected to be proactive, demonstrate effective leadership, and manage your team members as efficiently as possible. 

Outstanding Communication Skills 

Every career in commercial real estate finance will involve you communicating with other people. You could be speaking with clients/borrowers, colleagues, superiors, and professionals from other institutions on a daily basis. And there’s a very slim margin for error in any finance career. So it’s crucial that you communicate clearly, concisely, and correctly. 

Attention to Detail 

Throughout your career in this industry, an eye for detail is absolutely necessary. You’ll be expected to remember quite a few laws, regulations, formulas, and protocols. Forgetting even one step or procedure could lead to hefty fines and an angry client or superior. 

What Degree Do You Need to Start a Commercial Real Estate Career? 

commercial real estate jobs

Commercial real estate professionals typically earn a bachelor’s degree in Accounting/Finance or have comparable military experience. If you majored in something else, don’t count yourself out. Many institutions will still consider you, so long as your major involved some classes in accounting, finance, or business. 

In addition to a degree, you’ll likely need 3-7 years of experience in asset management or underwriting. Depending on the specific role, you may also need leadership experience and a strong knowledge of the legal intricacies involved with financing commercial real estate. 

To start working towards your own career in this field, get a relevant bachelor’s degree and start working in finance or real estate. A few years of experience in an entry-level role is often enough to make you eligible for higher-paying roles in this industry. 

Latest Commercial Real Estate Job Listings

Featured Jobs

Associate - Commercial Real Estate Portfolio Manager / Underwriter (Real Estate Banking)
Wells Fargo Los Angeles, California, United States
At Wells Fargo, we are looking for talented people who will put our customers at the center of everything we do. We are seeking candidates who embrace diversity, equity and inclusion in a workplace where everyone feels valued and inspired. Help us build a better Wells Fargo.It all begins with…
Associate - Commercial Real Estate Portfolio Manager - Real Estate Banking
Wells Fargo Irvine, California, United States
At Wells Fargo, we are looking for talented people who will put our customers at the center of everything we do. We are seeking candidates who embrace diversity, equity and inclusion in a workplace where everyone feels valued and inspired. Help us build a better Wells Fargo. It all begins…
Commercial Associate - Commercial Real Estate - Boston
Global Commercial Banking Boston, Massachusetts, United States
Global Commercial BankingClient Relationship & AdvisorJob Description:Participates as an integral member of the Commercial Real Estate Client Team, working with commercial clients and prospects. Develops, participates and/or presents client/client team presentations (economic updates, markets forecasts, industry updates, industry valuations, client and prospect research and peer analysis), pitch books and relationship…
Relationship Manager-Commercial Real Estate Banking
Global Commercial Banking Chicago, Illinois, United States
Global Commercial BankingClient Relationship & AdvisorJob Description:Bank of America's Commercial Real Estate Team is seeking a Senior Relationship Manager (SRM) . Bank of America is one of the largest providers of construction, development, and permanent financing to professional developers and investors of real estate including retail, office, industrial, lodging, and…
Relationship Manager-Commercial Real Estate Banking
Bank of America Chicago, Illinois, United States
Job Description:Bank of America's Commercial Real Estate Team is seeking a Senior Relationship Manager (SRM) . Bank of America is one of the largest providers of construction, development, and permanent financing to professional developers and investors of real estate including retail, office, industrial, lodging, and multifamily project loans as well…
Lead Control Management Officer-Commercial Real Estate (CRE)
Wells Fargo Minneapolis, Minnesota, United States
At Wells Fargo, we are looking for talented people who will put our customers at the center of everything we do. We are seeking candidates who embrace diversity, equity and inclusion in a workplace where everyone feels valued and inspired. Help us build a better Wells Fargo. It all begins…
Lead Control Management Officer-Commercial Real Estate (CRE)
Wells Fargo Charlotte, North Carolina, United States
At Wells Fargo, we are looking for talented people who will put our customers at the center of everything we do. We are seeking candidates who embrace diversity, equity and inclusion in a workplace where everyone feels valued and inspired. Help us build a better Wells Fargo. It all begins…
Lead Control Management Officer-Commercial Real Estate (CRE)
Wells Fargo Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States
At Wells Fargo, we are looking for talented people who will put our customers at the center of everything we do. We are seeking candidates who embrace diversity, equity and inclusion in a workplace where everyone feels valued and inspired. Help us build a better Wells Fargo. It all begins…
Sr. Relationship Manager - Commercial Real Estate - Philadelphia
Bank of America Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States
Job Description:Job Description Leads a client service team in the Commercial Real Estate group that is responsible for coordinating the delivery of all banking services to a portfolio of customer relationships. Designs and implements marketing strategies that will maximize the profitability of each customer. Typically focused on relationships with the…
Commercial Real Estate Portfolio Manager
Wells Fargo Atlanta, Georgia, United States
About this role:Wells Fargo is seeking a Commercial Real Estate Portfolio Manager...In this role, you will:Participate in review, research, and reporting of property performanceIdentify opportunities for process improvements within scope of responsibilities or functional areaReview and research basic operational assignments that require evaluation and selection of alternativesExercise independent judgment to…
Commercial Real Estate Portfolio Manager
Wells Fargo Irvine, California, United States
About this role:Wells Fargo is seeking a Commercial Real Estate Portfolio Manager...In this role, you will:Participate in review, research, and reporting of property performanceIdentify opportunities for process improvements within scope of responsibilities or functional areaReview and research basic operational assignments that require evaluation and selection of alternativesExercise independent judgment to…
Commercial Real Estate Portfolio Manager
Wells Fargo Charlotte, North Carolina, United States
About this role:Wells Fargo is seeking a Commercial Real Estate Portfolio Manager...In this role, you will:Participate in review, research, and reporting of property performanceIdentify opportunities for process improvements within scope of responsibilities or functional areaReview and research basic operational assignments that require evaluation and selection of alternativesExercise independent judgment to…
Commercial Real Estate Portfolio Manager
Wells Fargo McLean, Virginia, United States
About this role:Wells Fargo is seeking a Commercial Real Estate Portfolio Manager...In this role, you will:Participate in review, research, and reporting of property performanceIdentify opportunities for process improvements within scope of responsibilities or functional areaReview and research basic operational assignments that require evaluation and selection of alternativesExercise independent judgment to…
Senior Lead Control Management Officer- Commercial Real Estate
Wells Fargo Salt Lake City, Utah, United States
At Wells Fargo, we are looking for talented people who will put our customers at the center of everything we do. We are seeking candidates who embrace diversity, equity and inclusion in a workplace where everyone feels valued and inspired. Help us build a better Wells Fargo. It all begins…
Senior Lead Control Management Officer- Commercial Real Estate
Wells Fargo Chandler, Arizona, United States
At Wells Fargo, we are looking for talented people who will put our customers at the center of everything we do. We are seeking candidates who embrace diversity, equity and inclusion in a workplace where everyone feels valued and inspired. Help us build a better Wells Fargo. It all begins…
Senior Lead Control Management Officer- Commercial Real Estate
Wells Fargo Raleigh, North Carolina, United States
At Wells Fargo, we are looking for talented people who will put our customers at the center of everything we do. We are seeking candidates who embrace diversity, equity and inclusion in a workplace where everyone feels valued and inspired. Help us build a better Wells Fargo. It all begins…
Senior Lead Control Management Officer- Commercial Real Estate
Wells Fargo New York, New York, United States
At Wells Fargo, we are looking for talented people who will put our customers at the center of everything we do. We are seeking candidates who embrace diversity, equity and inclusion in a workplace where everyone feels valued and inspired. Help us build a better Wells Fargo. It all begins…
Associate Asset Manager - Commercial Real Estate Investments
MetLife California, United States
Role Value Proposition: MetLife Investment Management (MIM) is one of the largest institutional investors and asset managers in the world, with over $651 billion in combined managed assets, and has consistently generated superior returns for both policyholders and shareholders. The enterprise has more than 900 dedicated professionals with extensive experience…
Relationship Manager - Commercial Real Estate - Denver
Bank of America Denver, Colorado, United States
Job Description:Responsible for a variety of relationships, business development and transactional activities for our Commercial Real Estate group. May lead a client service team for less critical or complex relationships and but typically provides support to a more senior relationship manager. May handle all aspects of a customer relationship except…
Sr Credit Products Manager - Commercial Real Estate Banking
Bank of America Chicago, Illinois, United States
Job Description:Senior Credit Products Manager (SCPM) is a Band 3 leadership resource designed to benefit a market whereby the role is intended to be flexible to meet specific market needs. It will report to the National Portfolio Executive (NPE). The role includes supervision of Senior Portfolio Managers (SPMOs), PMOs, Analysts/Trainees…

Anonymously Let Employers Know You Are On The Market

Not interested in Commercial Real Estate Careers? Here are some other careers you may be interested in.