Hot Housing – Make the Most of Career Opportunities in the Recovering Residential Market

Last year brought indisputable evidence of a recovery in housing, with the National Association of Homebuilders reporting a 28 percent year-over-year increase in housing starts in 2012. Even amid the volatility caused by rising interest rates this summer, the pace of construction remains robust, and expanding homebuilders are on the lookout for talent. Now is the time for professionals in the industry to assess their prospects and make the most of a rebounding market.

From my own work as a recruiter offering a unique digital approach to executive hiring, the high-demand positions I see at the moment are in purchasing and in land acquisition/development. If your career resides in these areas, think strategically and study the market carefully to find a position offering the most headroom and potential for expanded responsibility in your area of expertise. If your skills fall in a different area, fear not. The recovery is providing motivated professionals with a degree of flexibility as companies begin rebuilding their diminished ranks.

The housing downturn left many managers and their employees hesitant to leave their present positions, rightfully fearing that a move to advance their careers might leave them with no job at all if prospects worsened at a new company. Some of that caution persists, but today’s business environment should inspire confidence that careers can once again rise with the prospects of homebuilders. Career-focused individuals should also keep in mind that their years helping firms muddle through the downturn also have value in their own right in the eyes of employers looking for hard-working, innovative people.

Hiring managers, too, face a different landscape when recruiting executives. The decline in housing wasn’t gradual and neither is the recovery. The people who left the industry have not necessarily been replaced with younger talent in recent years, so many employers have become more flexible in the way they hire and develop their leaders. Companies must think deeper than job titles and years of experience. What leadership responsibilities and decision-making skills are revealed by a candidate’s work experience? How did he or she add value during the recession? Smart people are easy to train. Can you find the devotion and talent you’re looking for in someone from a different career track, or even from another industry? The talent is out there and hungry for a piece of the long-awaited growth in housing. Likewise, housing professionals should draw confidence from the work they’ve done in recent years – a confidence that inspires them to excel as things are finally looking up. The housing recovery will be yours to prosper from as well.

For more than 25 years, Christopher Frederick has helped match ambitious professionals with leadership positions at some of the most successful firms in real estate. To learn more about how we can enhance your next executive search using our extensive digital network, contact Chris Hingle at Or visit our website at where you can find exclusive job listings for real estate executives.

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