Real Estate

Helping real estate organizations maximize the value of their investments and transform their businesses

Real estate companies have long pursued a consistent approach to value creation: high-quality properties, low cost of capital, and consolidation. However, changes in technology and how people use real estate have significantly disrupted the industry. Leaders today create Change that Matters by focusing on customer experience, harnessing the power of data and technology, and innovating their business models.

We pair extensive real estate and functional expertise with deep tenant knowledge across sectors to help organizations reimagine the role they play in space acquisition, development, and use. For example, a shopping mall landlord needs to know what is state of the art in retail-experience design, while an office developer with financial services tenants needs to understand the latest in banking artificial-intelligence technology, physical security, and talent attraction. We partner with organizations to maximize value, transform their businesses and build the new capabilities needed to win.


Holistic transformations

Helping real estate companies achieve outsized ambitions through digital, marketing, operations, sales, transformation strategy, and talent; dramatically raising the performance of real estate investment trusts (REIT) and operating companies through new delivery models

Digital acceleration and advanced analytics

Improving user experiences, strengthening investment decision making, and delivering efficiencies via digital transformations and connected ecosystems. Leveraging advanced analytics as a practical source of value and competitive advantage


Supercharging ground-breaking, large-scale developments (such as cities, districts, marquee buildings, and precincts) to be future-proofed, specifically tailored for the perfect tenant, economically and physically optimized, and capital efficient


Decarbonizing portfolios and new developments, building new green businesses, and re-underwriting assets based on climate change


Reimagining the value and role of space for occupiers considering rapid evolutions in how the world works, lives, plays, and shops—such as the future of work, the workplace for office occupiers, and new store formats and footprints for retail



projects in the past 5 years


clients globally


real estate industry experts

Our approach

Digital and advanced-analytics transformation

Deploy advanced analytics and data science to inform strategic and operational decisions, leveraging traditional real estate data and nontraditional data (such as consumer spend, place-based experience reviews, and demographics).

Create workflow tools by using the data science for real estate practitioners (such as the acquisition process), ensure change management, and develop internal data-science capabilities.

Corporate real estate optimization

Maximize the value of corporate real estate with our proprietary diagnostic that evaluates whether real estate choices support corporate strategic objectives and operating models, enable talent attraction and retention, meet sustainability objectives, and can achieve continued delivery at the optimum cost.

Development visioning and economic master planning

Envision a new city, community, or property in a facilitated workshop that brings in cross-functional external experts to collaborate on the creation of innovative ideas and to identify specific actions to move projects forward.

Plan vibrant and financially sound developments by assessing the complex strategic, financial, and operational trade-offs for single projects and city-scale developments.

Major project value assurance

Conduct an objective review of a project before financing or contracting, identifying the major value drivers and risks and arming the development team with the tools and insights to deliver.

Help deliver large, complex real estate projects on time and on budget with leading-edge approaches, including experience-design optimization, collaborative contracting, procurement cleansheeting, standardization and modularization, and real-time productivity management in field activities.

Examples of our work

Partnering with an owner-operator company to build new, digital businesses

Established a de novo digital and innovation lab for a leading North American real estate owner and operator to build proprietary technology, novel business models, and new monetization streams, resulting in more than $50 million in impact of run-rate earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization within three years.

Enhancing a developer’s growth strategy

Advised on urban planning, sale of land, infrastructure, and commercial and residential real estate to generate a 20-fold revenue increase in five years for a leading Chinese new-city developer.

Transforming an extensive healthcare-facilities program

Developed strategies for a large owner of healthcare facilities in the United States to create a financially sustainable real estate portfolio, deliver several multibillion-dollar development projects, and optimize facilities-maintenance and -leasing costs while improving service levels.


Reimagining the office and work life after COVID-19

– The pandemic has forced the adoption of new ways of working. Organizations must reimagine their work and the role of offices in creating safe, productive, and enjoyable jobs and lives for employees.

New at McKinsey blog

Blog Post

Reimagining the real estate industry for the next normal

– How one real-estate developer’s focus on digital reinvention before coronavirus is helping it navigate the current crisis and beyond.



The workplace will never be the same: Imperatives for real-estate owners and operators

– The cubicle farm has to go. Offices must be places of magic.

Commercial real estate must do more than merely adapt to coronavirus

– COVID-19 is a humanitarian challenge that will have lasting effects on how people live, work, and play. By acting today, real... estate leaders can best serve end users and ensure their own viability.

Getting ahead of the market: How big data is transforming real estate

– Many real estate firms have long made decisions based on a combination of intuition and traditional, retrospective data. Today,... a host of new variables make it possible to paint more vivid pictures of a location’s future risks and opportunities.

Related Practices

Private Equity & Principal Investors

Helping investors make smarter decisions

McKinsey Digital

We help our clients create change that matters—transformation, enabled by technology and sustained through capabilities

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