Working in architecture can be a lifelong career, but it’s also a niche that isn’t for everyone. Whatever your reasons for wanting a change of pace, the good news is that there are many other roles in real estate to which you might be well suited.
To give you a bit of inspiration in your job search, here are the main careers that make the most sense for former architects to pursue while remaining in the same sector.
Architects need a good eye for design, and sometimes it’s nice to shift this away from big-picture projects to interior spaces where you can be even more creative and expressive.
There are a few steps involved in entering this profession, and it’s best to work towards a recognized accreditation in the field of interior design, even though it’s not technically a requirement.
Commercial real estate development
Another logical move for an architecture professional to make is into the world of commercial real estate development, where you can helm complex projects and see them to fruition, while taking on a broader-ranging role throughout.
There’s lots involved in this process, from pitching to clients and using tools to analyze potential costs, to orchestrating on-site operations and wrangling supply chain complications.
Sharing your skills and knowledge with architects in training is an attractive option, allowing you to head back to the classroom as an educator rather than a student.
The majority of professors of architecture have worked successfully in the field before taking up positions at colleges and universities, and for people with the right communication capabilities and temperament it could be a dream job.
Real estate agent
From designing property to selling it, architects actually do well as real estate agents because they have a deeper understanding of the nuts and bolts of buildings than those who lack their experience and training.
For instance, an architect is in a better position to spot the opportunities afforded by a property that is in need of some TLC, and moreover will be able to convey these to prospective buyers, helping them secure sales.
In terms of big-picture roles, there are few that can match that of an urban planner. You’re not just looking into how individual buildings need to be designed, constructed and managed, but how entire areas of land should be used and developed in sprawling cities.
You’ll be responsible for overseeing entire neighborhoods, industrial districts, central regions and suburbs. You’ll also have to weigh up the ecological influence and sustainability of certain proposals, and make decisions that will shape communities for decades to come.
Project management is a transferable skill which applies in every industry, and real estate is no exception.
Qualified specialists in this arena are tasked with taking the reins of projects of all shapes and sizes, ensuring that the different team members and departments involved are able to work together smoothly, while also handling things like scheduling.
There’s a lot of cross-over between being a project manager and being a commercial real estate developer, as you’d expect.
For a more hands-on career, working in fabrication will satisfy that itch you may have for practical, physical application of your design and engineering abilities.
Fabricators can work in various contexts across the real estate industry, whether that’s an on-site role or in a workshop elsewhere.
Your happiness and fulfillment are more important than anything else, and so changing your career should be something you embrace with eagerness, rather than putting off. Architects have a lot to offer in all these disciplines and many more, so what are you waiting for?