Professor John Loper is a full-time Associate Professor of Real Estate (Teaching) and has taught over 40 classes in the real estate program since 2012. Prior to becoming a professor at USC, Professor Loper completed his undergrad (a combination of business, architecture, and civil engineering) and MRED graduate degree at USC and gathered a tremendous amount of knowledge and experience working for many different real estate companies.
After undergrad graduation, Professor Loper worked with a friend that started his own industrial real estate company and served as the project manager. Together, they built 4 tilt-up industrial buildings and entitled a 3 story, 45,000 sq. ft. office building, in Irvine. After coming back to USC to finish his master’s degree, a homebuilding company specifically recruited Professor Loper to be a “Jack of All Trades” for them: his work included the departments of construction, budgets, customer service, computerization, home issues, 2-year monthly projections of home sales, inventory, and finance. In addition to that, Professor Loper worked for companies that did industrial and retail development, property management and leasing, loans and banking, and eventually worked for a developer where he ran their west coast operations for a 2,400-unit residential community and 1M sq. feet of retail.
For students looking to own and manage their own properties, Professor Loper said to pay attention to the things you can do to the property to maximize rents and make decisions that increase and maintain long-term value. Also, think about how a neighborhood might change over time and keep abreast of trends to see how a specific sector of real estate is being affected.
For freshmen looking to get an internship, Professor Loper noted how a real estate internship isn’t immediately necessary if one isn’t available; working as an administrative assistant in finance/lending will help develop organizational and spreadsheet skills that will translate to a real estate internship the following year. Also, Professor Loper is open to teaching a 2-hour crash-course on “How to Build a Spreadsheet” for TREA members that haven’t had RED 375 yet.
For students about to graduate, Professor Loper said to think about long-term goals by getting a background of jobs that lead to the desired end goal. Furthermore, in his parting advice, Professor Loper said to get involved in the industry by going to lectures and events to learn stuff outside the classroom. Especially as a student, take advantage of discount rates to join real estate organizations such as ULI because they are a great opportunity to network for jobs.