Follow Nadia's journey towards her career as Senior Letting Manager in Germany.
'My 'career' outside of architecture started during university. Every summer break from first year onwards, I worked for a big German commercial property company (Corpus Sireo) for two months. I was lucky to get to look into their various different departments, from fund management, portfolio management, asset management and got a great overview of the different aspects of working with existing properties, from a commercial side and from an owner’s/investor’s point of view.
In my final university summer break I then did an internship at GE Real Estate (following my old boss from Sireo) and worked in risk management, which basically gave me an insight into the number crunching and valuation perspective. So by the time I had finished university, I had acquired the technical understanding through my studies and the commercial and financial know-how through the various internships.
After university I started a job as sales associate with GE Real Estate and was responsible for marketing and selling properties (at that point mainly smaller ones) out of GE’s large portfolio to both private and institutional buyers. My architectural background helped me enormously, as selling needs a story, this often was from a development perspective, seeing value-add potential and advising buyers on what they could do with the buildings. It put me in the position to understand the meaning and costs of issues with the building, giving me a good basis for negotiations with buyers when it came to pricing the property and its “flaws”.
After two years I then moved into letting, establishing a new team focused on leasing up the problematic and larger vacant areas of the portfolio throughout Germany. Again the technical understanding of what can be done and at what cost, benefited enormously to both develop a story and then convey this to future tenants. As part of construction measures for tenant and proactive building measures in order to attract future tenants, I was then able to also take a more hands-on approach, giving input and ideas to the construction teams and regularly visiting the site and ongoing works.
In 2013 I then moved to my new employer to establish a nationwide letting team there, apart from that, due to the technical knowledge I’m thrown in on various projects for clients, both developments, appraisals, valuations etc. and am lucky to work quite closely together with our the London office on some projects, so still make it to the UK quite regularly.
All in all in the commercial property market, it is vital to understand both the commercial/financial aspects, as well as the actual buildings themselves, as they are the basis of everything. In my experience, learning the commercial side of things on the job is a lot easier than acquiring the in depth knowledge of an architect or surveyor. I’ve found the job that I like and given the choice, I would always study architecture (and only at Scott Sutherland!) and learn the management side of things rather than the other way round!”
Master of Architecture
Senior Letting Manager, CR Investment Management
Frankfurt am Main, Germany
Find out more about Nadia's course
This course is professionally accredited by the RIBA and ARB and teaches all aspects required to become a professional Architect including the design of buildings, towns and cities.