Best MBA Programs for Real Estate

A real estate MBA can lead to career advancement and leadership opportunities. Learn more about the best MBA programs for real estate.
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Updated on June 18, 2024
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A master of business administration (MBA) program can prepare you for leadership roles — including in the real estate industry.

The real estate industry is projected to grow over the next decade, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). General and operations managers in that industry earned a median annual salary of $102,490 in 2023, the BLS reports.

A specialized real estate MBA can help prepare you for those jobs. We've ranked some of the country's best online MBA programs in real estate and included the types of jobs that may be available.

Read on to learn more about what a real estate MBA can do for you.

Featured Online MBA Programs

Learn about start dates, transferring credits, availability of financial aid, and more by contacting the universities below.

Top MBA in Real Estate Online Programs

We use trusted sources like Peterson's Data and the National Center for Education Statistics to inform the data for these schools. BestColleges.com is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site. from our partners appear among these rankings and are indicated as such.

BestColleges.com is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site.

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Best MBA Programs for Real Estate

California State University-Los Angeles

  • Los Angeles, CA
  • 4 years
  • Campus

On Campus | Scheduled Classes

Avg. Cost per Credit
In State | $975
Out of State | $975

Credits to Graduate
36

Program Information
Program Accreditation | Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business

Based in the heart of Los Angeles, Cal State LA offers an MBA in real estate program that has operated since 1960. The program's 36-credit curriculum includes a nine-credit real estate concentration, with course options like real estate finance, real estate valuation, real estate investment, and real estate practice/management. 

All applicants must submit GMAT or GRE scores, along with two letters of recommendation, transcripts, a statement of purpose, and a professional resume.

Average Undergrad Tuition
In-state
$5,742
Out-of-state
$17,622
Average Graduate Tuition
In-state
$7,176
Out-of-state
$16,680
Retention Rate
81%
Acceptance Rate
48%
Students Enrolled
26,671
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
33% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Western Association of Schools and Colleges Senior Colleges and University Commission
Best MBA Programs for Real Estate

Liberty University

  • Lynchburg, VA
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

100% Online | Self-Paced Classes

Avg. Cost per Credit
In State | $565
Out of State | $565

Credits to Graduate
45

Program Information
Program Accreditation | Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs

Based in Lynchburg, Virginia, Liberty serves more than 100,000 learners worldwide in large part thanks to its distance learning offerings, which include an online MBA program with a real estate development specialization. The program's 45-credit curriculum includes noteworthy courses like property law, real estate development, investment analysis, and real estate operations. 

Prospective students must have a 3.0 undergraduate GPA to qualify for admission. 

Average Undergrad Tuition
In-state
$15,417
Out-of-state
$15,417
Average Graduate Tuition
In-state
$7,980
Out-of-state
$7,980
Retention Rate
81%
Acceptance Rate
51%
Students Enrolled
85,586
Institution Type
Private
Percent Online Enrollment
92% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges
Best MBA Programs for Real Estate

Longwood University

  • Farmville, VA
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

100% Online | Self-Paced Classes

Avg. Cost per Credit
In State | $426
Out of State | $436

Credits to Graduate
31

Program Information
Program Accreditation | Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business

Based in Farmville, Virginia, Longwood offers an accelerated online MBA program that full-time students can complete in 10 months. While the 31-credit curriculum does not include an official real estate concentration, students can choose to take two real estate-specific elective courses: real estate economics and development and real estate finance and investments. 

Admission requirements include a combination of undergraduate GPA, work experience, and GMAT scores. Prospective students with a minimum 3.0 undergraduate GPA do not need work experience and do not need to submit GMAT scores. 

Average Undergrad Tuition
In-state
$7,940
Out-of-state
$23,900
Average Graduate Tuition
In-state
$6,480
Out-of-state
$17,910
Retention Rate
75%
Acceptance Rate
90%
Students Enrolled
4,468
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
8% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges
Best MBA Programs for Real Estate

The University of Texas at Dallas

  • Richardson, TX
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

100% Online | Self-Paced Classes

Avg. Cost per Credit
In State | $578
Out of State | $1,125

Credits to Graduate
53

Program Information
Program Accreditation | Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business

Located in Richardson, Texas, UT Dallas offers an online professional MBA program exclusively for part-time students. Learners can pursue a 21-credit real estate concentration that blends practice and theory through case studies and lectures. Coursework covers relevant topics like real estate loans, real estate finance, capital markets, and investment. 

Prospective students must submit GMAT scores unless they earn a minimum GPA of 3.5 or 3.6 at certain types of undergraduate schools.

Average Undergrad Tuition
In-state
$13,442
Out-of-state
$38,168
Average Graduate Tuition
In-state
$13,874
Out-of-state
$27,796
Retention Rate
89%
Acceptance Rate
79%
Students Enrolled
29,543
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
19% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges
Best MBA Programs for Real Estate

Tulane University of Louisiana

  • New Orleans, LA
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

On Campus | Scheduled Classes

Avg. Cost per Credit
In State | $1,825
Out of State | $1,825

Credits to Graduate
61

Program Information
Program Accreditation | Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business

Based in New Orleans, Louisiana, Tulane offers a full-time MBA program that requires learners to complete 61 credits over the course of two years or four semesters. The curriculum includes an 18-credit real estate specialization with relevant courses like hospitality/real estate development, cases in real estate, business of real estate development, and real estate financial products and incentives. 

All applicants must submit GMAT or GRE scores and complete an interview. Test waivers are available for certain qualified applicants.

Average Undergrad Tuition
In-state
$52,760
Out-of-state
$52,760
Average Graduate Tuition
In-state
$54,918
Out-of-state
$54,918
Retention Rate
93%
Acceptance Rate
13%
Students Enrolled
12,923
Institution Type
Private
Percent Online Enrollment
12% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

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What Can I Expect in an Online MBA Real Estate Program?

An online MBA in real estate program includes both broad instruction in business and a more focused curriculum on the real estate industry.

Program length varies by school. A typical MBA program takes about two years to finish. However, accelerated MBA programs allow students to complete their coursework in less time.

Other programs feature part-time, self-paced formats that might take longer to complete but better accommodate your personal schedule.

Cost also varies by program and school type.

An MBA program at a private, top-ranked university will generally be more expensive than one at a regional public school. Online MBA programs generally cost less than in-person programs.

Courses in Real Estate MBA Programs

  • Minus

    Real Estate Finance

    Courses in real estate finance cover the ins and outs of how money flows through the real estate industry. That includes deep instruction on loans, commercial real estate investing, and the tools used in real estate finance.
  • Minus

    Marketing

    Marketing is a key component of many MBA programs, including real estate specializations. A marketing course typically includes instruction in digital marketing and how to reach potential clients. A marketing course focused on real estate may also cover how to market your business to both homebuyers and investors.
  • Minus

    Real Estate Market Analysis

    A course in real estate market analysis will help you learn to analyze market trends — including local and regional trends — and incorporate them into your own real estate developments and practices.
  • Minus

    Risk Analysis

    A real estate risk analysis course will teach you to identify and reduce risks in real estate investments. Risks in the real estate field are broad and numerous, from market-related factors to natural disasters. So risk analysis is a key skill for real estate industry leaders.
  • Minus

    Property Law

    Property law varies widely among local, state, and federal governments. From coalitions of municipalities to regional development boards, property law expertise is a complex and must-have skill for any leader in the real estate industry. This course also will cover how to find and adapt to rules and regulations regardless of where you land a job.

Admissions Requirements

Admissions requirements vary by school, but most MBA programs require a bachelor's degree for admission.

Some MBA programs also require a certain number of years of work experience and letters of recommendation as part of the admissions process. However, this isn't a hard rule for all MBA programs.

Some programs also require an admissions test, such as the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) or Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT), although a number of business schools have moved to test-optional policies in recent years. Schools typically include admissions requirements on their program website.

What Careers Could I Pursue With an MBA in Real Estate?

An MBA in real estate can lead to a number of opportunities within the real estate field and beyond. The intensive business degree can mean career advancement within your current role or a new, specialized leadership opportunity.

General and Operations Manager

A general or operations manager leads the day-to-day operations of a business. This includes managing employees, ensuring goals are met, and keeping the business operating smoothly.

  • Median Annual Salary: $101,280 (BLS, May 2023)

Real Estate Broker

Real estate brokers work with clients to help buy and sell properties. This can be on an individual basis or for a much larger, commercial enterprise.

  • Average Annual Salary: $73,850 (Payscale, May 2024)

Property, Real Estate, and Community Association Managers

These professionals manage apartment complexes, community associations, and developments. They ensure utilities and amenities are kept up and running, and they also oversee the staff.

  • Median Annual Salary: $62,850 (BLS, May 2023)

Real Estate Development Director

A real estate development director helps plan developments and construction projects, works with local officials to ensure compliance with rules and regulations, and oversees projects.

  • Average Annual Salary: $123,530 (Payscale, March 2024)

Real Estate Consultant

A real estate consultant works with businesses to improve efficiency, reduce costs, and strategize for growth.

  • Average Annual Salary: $89,730 (Payscale, April 2024)

Frequently Asked Questions About Online MBA Programs in Real Estate

Can you work while pursuing an MBA degree?

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Yes, you can work full time while pursuing an online MBA degree. Schools offer programs in online and part-time formats to accommodate students' busy schedules.

Do employers care about an online MBA?

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An online MBA from an accredited college usually includes the same curriculum as an in-person MBA, and employers increasingly value online degrees.

How can I use my MBA in real estate?

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An MBA can lead to leadership and managerial positions within the real estate industry. The business skills learned during a real estate MBA program, like risk management and finance, also apply to jobs across industries.

Is an MBA in real estate worth it?

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An MBA in real estate can help boost your career prospects or lead to increased earnings within your field. The wide range of skills covered by an MBA program can also help you land a job in a new field or start your own business.

Which MBA specialization is best for real estate?

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A number of MBA programs offer specific real estate specializations, allowing you to focus on that industry.

Note: The insights on this page — excluding school descriptions — were reviewed by an independent third party compensated for their time by BestColleges. Page last reviewed May 21, 2024.

BestColleges.com is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site.

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