Pay for Corporate Real Estate Professionals on the Rise

The 2020 results mark the largest year-over-year increase in the history of CoreNet Global's compensation survey.
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Corporate real estate professionals have seen their compensation go on a consistent upswing for the last five years, according to the 2020 CoreNet Global End User Compensation Survey. Additionally, the latest figures indicate a remuneration boon of sorts from 2019 to 2020.

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CoreNet Global worked with Ferguson Partners, formerly FPL Associates LP, to conduct the survey, which involved 134 professionals—81 percent men, 19 percent women—in corporate real estate at large companies in the U.S., Asia, Europe, Latin America, Canada and Australia/New Zealand. According to the 2020 survey results, the fiscal year 2019-2020 average total annual cash compensation for heads of corporate real estate was $462,900 and the average total remuneration reached $658,969, up from a respective $256,000 and $307,000 in FY 2018-2019. Most notable about the 2020 results is the fact that the year-over-year compensation marks the largest increase in the history of the CoreNet Global survey.

Seventy-nine percent of survey respondents received an increase in their base salary between 2019 and 2020, and a mere 2 percent saw their salaries decrease, while the remaining 19 percent saw no change. In terms of cash bonuses, or annual incentives, 47 percent received an increase in their bonus over the previous year and 15 percent experienced a reduction in the payout of their annual incentive award, while the remaining 38 percent saw no change.

Great expectations

Participants in CoreNet Global’s 2020 survey forecast a repeat performance for the upcoming year; they anticipate that corporate real estate compensation will continue to rise just as it has for the last five years. Fifty-seven percent of the respondents believe their base salary will increase between 2020 and 2021, and among this group, the expectation is for an average 4 percent increase in salary. Fewer survey respondents were confident about a rise in cash bonuses, but the 38 percent who are expecting additional increases in annual incentives between 2020 and 2021 expect them to increase by an average of 17 percent.  

As for the next compensation survey, the COVID-19 global health crisis will likely add a new angle. As Austin Morris, managing director with Ferguson Partners said in a prepared statement, while the pandemic necessitated a temporary shift to remote work, many companies are now considering how to permanently expand their virtual workforce. This allows firms to consider a wider range of talent, including those not living near physical office locations.