Making it in Real Estate
Making it in Real Estate

Making it in Real Estate

Starting Out as a Developer


180 Pages, 6 x 9

Formats: Paperback, ePub

Paperback, $19.95 (US $19.95) (CA $26.95)

Publication Date: October 2020

ISBN 9780874204575

Price: $19.95


What does it take to be a successful real estate developer? Author John McNellis tells you how, sharing practical tips and advice from his wealth of experience over 35 years in real estate development. Like meeting with a mentor over coffee, McNellis entertains with witty anecdotes, and wisdom on how to take advantage of opportunities and avoid pitfalls. Offering humorous insights, the book covers the ins and outs of how to get financing, working with architects, brokers, and other professionals, how to make a good deal, and win approval for your project. This updated and expanded edition includes 25 new chapters covering leadership, investment decisions, the regulatory environment, and guidance on how to survive a downturn.


"Best damn book on development I've ever read." —Preston Butcher, chairman, Legacy Partners

"John McNellis's book on real estate development and investment is extraordinarily insightful and full of wisdom. His wit makes it an easy read. I would highly recommend this book to both experienced and beginning real estate developers and investors." —George M. Marcus, chairman of the board, Marcus & Millichap Inc. and Essex Property Trust Inc.

"John McNellis fills his book with rich insight, great advice, humor, and inspiration—sharing his deep experience and wisdom, helping us think more clearly about real estate and assorted business issues. A must-read." —Mark L. Myers, head of commercial real estate, Wells Fargo & Company

Author Biography

Cobbling together the equity from friends and family, they built and opened their first shopping center in 1983, by which time McNellis was no longer practicing law—except on behalf of his own projects. Within a few years, he formed McNellis Partners with Beth Walter and Mike Powers. They continue to be partners more than 30 years later. Specializing in developing supermarket-anchored shopping centers in northern California, the partnership has followed a strategy of developing only about two projects a year and doing so with internal capital only, thus retaining 100 percent ownership of their developments. In recent years, the company has begun developing mixed-use projects and, in an effort to diversify, investing in small Silicon Valley office buildings.