Advanced Real Estate Finance, Development, and Management

5205 It is an essential course for anyone going into real estate development, acquisitions, asset management, or private equity. This year’s course is divided into two major sections.

Section 1 focuses on individual properties or projects and covers five major topics: (1) advanced analysis and management of development projects, (2) advanced analysis and management of acquisitions (including complex waterfalls and investor after-tax capital accounts), (3) the asset’s capital stack, distress, and “special situations”, (4) management and recovery of an asset in a distressed environment, (5) the real estate underwriting process, investment committee package and stochastic return analyses.

Section 2 focuses on the essential concepts and skills required to build performing real estate portfolios and successful real estate companies. Section 2 covers up to seven additional topics: (6) real estate market cycles and investment/management considerations, (7) portfolio construction and techniques for optimizing long-term risk adjusted rates of return, (8) REITs and the IPO process,  (9) raising private equity capital for real estate projects, portfolios, and companies, (10) developing a financial business plan for a startup, (11) PropTech, CleanTech, and FinTech in real estate, and (12) leadership of real estate companies.

The course is fast paced, rigorous and quantitative. We will be using a combination of  case studies, lectures and problem sets to examine a multitude of important advanced real estate topics. Many of the cases require students to apply a full range of real estate skills and learnings to evaluate the appropriate strategic opportunities. We may also host guest lecturers who are experts in their respective fields.

This course is required and intended for GSD MRE students. Non-MRE students who successfully completed GSD 5204 in fall 2023 may be able to take 5205 with instructor approval in my.harvard. This course builds on 5204 and assumes students can adeptly analyze and model pro forma real estate financial projections, including levered investor returns, carried interest dollars allocated to sponsors, and investor waterfalls for all major real estate asset categories.