About graduate careers in property
The property industry generates revenue from land and real estate in a variety of ways, from acquiring and disposing of property and land to overseeing the development of new properties to strategically investing in real estate on a client’s behalf. Broadly speaking, property firms can specialise in just one or two of these services or offer a full range (these firms are known as ‘full service’ firms). Property firms also operate in one or a combination of the commercial, residential and rural markets. Property is closely linked to both the construction and finance industries and picks up or slows down accordingly.
- Read our specialisms pages for more information about the different services property firms can offer and to see where a career in property could take you.
Graduates working within property are generally expected to work towards a professional qualification with a relevant professional body, usually either the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) or the Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI). This testifies to their on-the-job expertise. Property professionals can expect a lot of choice over the path their career will take.
Different positions will suit different personalities: you could be involved in the renovation of property, for example, or you could work in ratings – number crunching to set the government’s business rate taxes or helping your client pay the lowest ratings possible. Most property firms rotate you around a number of areas as a graduate, expecting you to specialise when you are professionally qualified. However, some employers will require you to specialise from the start.
- Find out more about the typical routes planners and surveyors take to become qualified with the RICS and RTPI.
Opportunities for graduates
Graduate schemes offered by full-service property firms are a popular choice. They last for two to three years. Smaller, local property companies also take on graduates, usually on an ad hoc basis. There are a number of other companies that own or deal with land, such as retailers, who will also hire graduates into property-related roles.
- Take a look at these employer hub pages to find out more about property firms and get handy employer-specific application advice.
While many employees join the sector with a property-related degree, this is not the only route to entry. Graduates with other undergraduate degrees can study a postgraduate conversion course before applying, but some property employers will hire non-property graduates and pay for them to complete the postgraduate conversion course while working.
- Discover your options for starting a property career if you have a degree in a non-property related subject.
Most property firms offer summer internships and placement-year work experience opportunities to students. Property-related work experience is particularly advantageous, but other work experience that builds your transferable skills is also seen as valuable. Recruiters seek graduates with commercial awareness, relationship-building skills and analytical ability, alongside a genuine interest in property.
- Learn about the different opportunities to gain work experience in the property industry and when you should apply.
- expected a salary of £27,574, which is higher than the typical graduate salary in property, according to the data collected by GTI – more data on salaries in the property industry can be found here
- tended to agree with the statement ‘It will be tough to get a job in 2017’ (74%)
- were less likely to use LinkedIn for careers purposes than students interested in other sectors, with a relatively low 55% saying they did – get ahead of the competition by getting to grips with online networking
- probably could be tempted away from property to work in other careers, as 70% agreed with the statement ‘I am willing to take a job that is not within my sector of interest’ – take a look at some other careers you could do with a property degree