The Top 12 Best Real Estate Business Ideas

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By Clever Real Estate Updated October 22, 2021


There are many different ways to make money in real estate. You can go the traditional route of becoming a property developer, landlord, or real estate agent, but there are now new, exciting ways to become a part of the community. You can also take less traditional routes and work on real estate apps, in photography for sales, or industrial cleaning.

The Top 12 Best Real Estate Business Ideas

You’ve probably heard the news: there’s a lot of money to be made in real estate. Seriously, there are millions to be made. But, in much the same way, the ways you can actually go about making this money seems to be nearly endless as well.

If you have yet to get started, the sheer number of real estate business ideas can easily be overwhelming.

Not to worry. We’ve rounded up the most lucrative ways to get started in real estate and put them together into this one easy list, just for you.

The Top 12 Best Real Estate Business Ideas

Here’s a look at the best job titles in real estate:


This is one of the most common ways that people make money from real estate. If you are a landlord, it means that you own a home (or an apartment block) and rent it out to tenants.

You are then responsible for the building’s general maintenance. You are also responsible for taking care of any emergencies that come up, as well as paying the taxes on the property.

Property Manager

Sometimes landlords need a little bit of help. Whether they live too far away from their properties, have too many to manage, or just don’t want to be hands on, it’s no problem – they can always just hire a property manager instead.

A property manager is a person who the landlord employs to deal with the day-to-day running of the investment properties. They deal with things like organizing repairs and upgrades, supervising the workers, interviewing potential tenants, and more.

House Flipper

This is one of the most common real estate business ideas. House flippers purchase the worst house in the best neighborhood and spend the rest of their budget renovating the property. Because of the forced appreciation, they are often able to sell the homes for a significant profit.

There are many different ways to go about this. You can purchase homes from an owner-occupier and simply spruce them up, or you can even purchase foreclosed upon or "Zombie" house and completely gut them for a brand new look.

Real Estate Photographer

In today’s digital age, it’s hard to sell a house without a stellar digital presence. That’s why it’s lucrative to be a real estate photographer. You are responsible for ensuring that every single listing puts its best foot forward.

Most homebuyers spend hours browsing online listings before ever actually heading out to look at homes in person. If they are not impressed by what they see online, there’s no reason for them to make the effort to schedule a viewing of the home.

Because of this, most agents and sellers are willing to pay top dollar for a photographer who can ensure that digital browsers like what they see in the images.

Home Stager

In much the same way as a real estate photographer, home stagers are responsible for getting clients in the door for viewings. If you start a home staging business, you’ll likely never be short on work. This is ideal for someone with a passion for home design and a creative flair.

A home stager goes beyond superficial things like cookies in the oven to entice perspective buyers. They really take stock of each individual property and its unique features so that they can highlight what is important.

Depending on your business model, stagers often charge either a commission of the sale, or a flat fee.

Real Estate Agent

This is the most classic way to become involved in real estate. Depending on the kind of real estate that you trade in, it can also be the most lucrative. If you’ve ever wondered just how much real estate agents can make, you can discover that here.

However, the great thing about being an agent is that you are in control of your time. You can do it as a full time career or as a part-time side hustle. It’s completely up to you.


The real estate market is becoming more and more competitive. Investors need to close on deals constantly to turn a profit. This is where bird doggers come in. Real estate bird dogs have a difficult task cut out for them: they must find deals for investors before they hit the market.

If the deal goes through, they’ll earn either a small percentage of the deal or a flat-rate fee.

This job is better suited for someone who already has connections in the real estate industry. This is because to know about deals before they hit the market, you’ll need to have multiple sources "on the inside" who can feed you good information.

Property Developer

If you can’t dish out millions to build Class A skyscrapers just yet, not to worry. What you should start on is real estate crowdfunding. This means that you can pool your money together with hundreds (sometimes even thousands) of other low-cost investors to finance real estate developments worldwide.

If you have more seed money to work with, consider starting small and developing small commercial or residential projects in your immediate area before branching out.


This isn’t a job that just anyone can jump right into, but it doesn’t make it any less important or lucrative. As an architect, you’ll need an advanced degree. You’ll also need to put in many thankless hours at the bottom of your firm’s totem pole before you can make a good living in the profession.

However, if you work in residential real estate and design the "cookie cutter" homes in pre-planned subdivisions, there’s a fortune to be made as an architect – easily.


There is plenty of money to be made in the landscaping of both commercial and residential properties. Could you imagine a million dollar home being worth that much if its lawn was completely dead?

As a real estate landscaper, you could partner with developers to create fantastic green spaces – be it for pre-planned subdivisions, office complexes, or even city parks. Yes, there is also a lot of money in maintaining these green spaces once built. However, being the one responsible for designing and constructing them in the first place is definitely where all the money is.

Real Estate App Developer

As mentioned, we live in a digital world. So much of the real estate market is online. People view homes, find Realtors, make bids, and close on deals all without ever meeting each other in person.

After the fact, people need ways to manage their real estate portfolios, maintain their homes, and easily communicate with tenants. If you can give people a platform on which they can do all of this easily, you’ll be in the money in no time.

One of the best real estate business ideas is to hone in on a problem in the real estate industry and then create an app that fixes it.

Industrial Cleaner

One of the best ways to make money in real estate is to start an industrial cleaning business. This is particularly profitable in areas with rapid expansion and lots of new construction.

You will have two base types of customers: owner-occupiers who would prefer not to deep clean their homes as they prepare to sell them, as well as residential home developers who need someone to clear away the dust of construction as they begin to sell the newly built homes.

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