Advanced Real Estate Finance

This course builds on GSD 5204 and comparable introductory real estate courses offered by other schools at Harvard. This year’s course covers five main topics: (1) Advanced Financial Analysis and Deal Structuring for Acquisitions (including waterfalls), (2) Advanced Financial Analysis and Structuring for Land and Development Projects, (3) Debt Financing and Debt Investments, (4) Real Estate Market Cycles and Portfolio Structuring, (5) Management and recovery of Assets in a Distressed Environment

The objective of the course is to give students in-depth financial analytical skills for project acquisitions and development, real estate financing, and portfolio management. Using case studies and lectures, the course focuses on advanced real estate topics for all major real estate product-types including apartments, office, retail, industrial, single-family, and land development. A major emphasis in the class is to build students’ financial modeling skills and their knowledge of advanced industry practices. Many cases will require students to apply a full range of acquisition, development, investment, disposition, financing, and management decisions at the property level. Key decision-making for all phases of the development process including site selection, design, financing, construction, leasing, operations, and sales are stressed throughout the first half of the course. Other strategic requirements for completing successful projects such as acquisition due diligence, debt and equity structuring, market cycle timing, and asset recovery in a distressed environment are covered during the other half.

Paired Course: Although not mandatory, this course is meant to be taken in conjunction with GSD 5276, which takes place in the second half of the semester; it is also 2 credits and meets at the same time as 5275. GSD 5276 will build on many of the questions and concepts that 5275 postulates.