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September 18, 2023

Building a bridge to CRE education: The story of our Glossary journey

Building a bridge to CRE education: The story of our Glossary journey

Commercial real estate (CRE), like most industries, has its own unique language. The vast array of terms, acronyms, and jargon can sometimes stump even the most seasoned CRE professionals.

I found that to be the case when I first began my journey with Walker & Dunlop. Although I considered myself well-versed in commercial real estate before I began working here, I soon encountered specific terms and practices that revealed the staggering depth and breadth of Walker & Dunlop’s presence in the commercial real estate ecosystem.

The birth of an idea

As I began to navigate the complexities of our offerings, I realized something. If I was surprised by the volume and nuanced meanings of CRE terms, others might be in the same boat. This epiphany laid the foundation for what would become our comprehensive CRE glossary, a tool designed to bring clarity to every stakeholder, regardless of their experience level.

The making of the glossary

Creating the glossary was quite the journey itself. Rather than a half-hearted effort of just throwing a few standard definitions of common CRE terms together, I wanted to do something different.

My team collaborated with every division of Walker & Dunlop to ensure that each business team had a say in identifying and defining the terms most relevant to its area of expertise. As a finance and advisory services provider, Walker & Dunlop works in every aspect of commercial real estate, so the task of gathering the information needed for a comprehensive glossary was massive.

At the same time, I wanted the glossary to be accessible to anyone at any experience level in CRE—from the first-time investor, buyer, seller, or borrower to the seasoned portfolio manager and long-time commercial real estate experts.

Accomplishing that required an iterative process of crafting, consulting, and refining, which enriched the glossary to its current state.

How the glossary benefits everyone

The Walker & Dunlop Glossary of Terms is so much more than just a list of terms. It is a bridge to education and simplification. Here are just a few of the ways I hope people will be able to use it:

For new investors, buyers, sellers, and borrowers

Armed with the glossary, new investors, buyers, sellers and borrowers can dive confidently into the world of CRE. By gaining a quick but nuanced understanding of the CRE landscape, new CRE professionals can make informed decisions more quickly than their uninformed counterparts.

For seasoned CRE pros

Regardless of how long a person has been in the commercial real estate industry, there is always something new to learn, some bit of knowledge that requires a quick refresher, and some industry jargon that needs a little explanation. Seasoned CRE professionals will find the glossary to be an invaluable quick reference guide.

For internal stakeholders

Our internal team also finds the glossary useful as a tool to help streamline communications. When everyone is on the same page, we can foster a clearer understanding of everyone’s roles and responsibilities within the broader scope of all the work Walker & Dunlop does to help our clients.

Our commitment to you

The glossary is proof of Walker & Dunlop’s unwavering commitment to transparency and education regarding all aspects of commercial real estate. It is just one of the ways we ensure every stakeholder feels valued and informed. The glossary is more than a resource. It is a labor of love and a reflection of our dedication to making commercial real estate accessible and understandable to all.

I invite you to use this glossary as your compass as you navigate the vast ocean of commercial real estate. Encourage your peers, colleagues, and friends in the CRE industry to delve into the glossary as well.

We plan to update the glossary regularly, as the industry continues to grow and evolve. So, share your feedback with us and become part of the iterative process. Let’s continue our journey of understanding together. Download your complimentary copy of the CRE glossary today.

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