Shawn Massey, CCIM, SCLS

Best Books for a Real Estate Brokers, Developers and Other Real Estate Professionals:

I have been following a LinkedIn discussion in regards to best books to read on retail by Raluca Ioana Montenu and was fascinated by allot of the recommendations provided online. 

Although, the following list is broken down into three categories of books it is not a comprehensive list of the books available.  There are many books I am sure I have not read that should be included.  I ask that my readers submit their recommendations via email at and I will update my list periodically and save it on my blog site for future reference.

Some of the books could be dated and several our textbooks! 

Note: There is no order to my listings

Books on Retail and Retail Commercial Real Estate:

Sam Walton – Made in America by Sam Walton

Sam Walton by Vince Trimble

Leisure & Lifestyle Retailing – Published by ICSC

Why We Buy – Paco Underhill

Winning at Retail by Ander

Retail as a Catalyst for Economic Development – Published by ICSC

The Retail Green Concept – Rudolph Milian  

More than a Hobby by David Green

Doing Business the Chick Fil A Way – S. Truett Cathy

The Starbucks experience – Joseph Michelli

Call of the Mall – Paco Underhill

Shopping Center Appraisal and Analysis by the Appraisal Institute

Shopping environments: Evolution, Planning & Design

Shopping by Pamela N. Danziger

Threshold Resistance – Alfred Taubman

Minding the Store by Stanley Marcus

Market Research for Shopping Centers – Published by ISCS

Operating Small Shopping centers by Alexander and Muhlebach

Shopping Center Leasing – Published by ICSC

            Note:  I used this in my CLS class and it was excellent!

Getting Retail Right by Williams

The Business of Shopping Center Law – Published by ICSC

Green Tactics from Retailers and Shopping Centers by Rudolph and Miliam

Developing Successful Retail in Underserved Retail Markets

Investing in Retail Properties by Rappaport

Commercial/ Retail Property Leasing – The Tenant’s Hand Book by Harry Bermingham

Note:  The best I have found for books on retail real estate is the ICSC website in its publications section.  The link to the site is listed below.

Books on Real Estate Development:

Note:  I teach a graduate class on real estate development and sustainability at the University of Memphis. 

Real Estate Development – Principals and Processes by Miles, Berens, Eppli and Weiss

Note:  This book is published by ULI and is an excellent book that I use in my class as the primary text book.  It is relevant and does not read like your typical textbook.

Green Development – Integrating Ecology & Real Estate – Published by the Rocky Mountain Institute.

Business Geography and New Real Estate Analysis by Dr. Grant Thrall

Note:  I had the opportunity to co teach a semester long class with Dr. Thrall about a year ago and was totally fascinated by his approach to using spatial analysis and its impact on real estate development decision making.  A difficult book to understand, but essential for advanced site selection analysis.

Trammel Crow – Master Builder by Robert S. Sobel

Note:  Some of best development books can be found on the ULI Website.

Other Commercial Real Estate Related Books:

The Little Book on NNN Investing by Jonathan Hipp and David Sobelman

Real Estate Finance by Kolbe, Greer and Rudner

Note:  I am biased on this book as Dr. Kolbe is a very dear friend and Dr. Greer was my main professor when I received my MBA at The University of Memphis.

Investment Analysis by Dr. Gaylon Greer

Real Estate Case Study Approach by Pooruu

Analyzing Real Estate Opportunities by Messner. Boyce, Trimble and Ward

Marketing Investment Real Estate by Messener, Schrieber, Lyon and ward

Rich Dad Poor Dad by Robert T. Kiyosaki

Real Estate Principles and Practices by Larsen

Real Estate Fundamentals by Heirt

Think Like a Millionaire by Donald Trump

Trump – Jerome Tuccile

Note:  Really any book about Donald Trump is worth reading despite if you like him or not.

Essentials of Real Estate Economics by Mckenzie and Betts

Real Estate An Introduction to Professionalism

Basic Real Estate Appraisal by Betts

Income Property Valuation by Fisher

Real Estate Finance by C.F. Sirmans

Real Estate Analyst & Strategy by Eldred

Real Estate Law by Miller & Bowman

Urban Economics & Real Estate by McDonald and McMiken

Real Estate Law by Nelson and Potter

Modern Real Estate Principles by William M. Shenkel

Instructional Support Package in Contemporary Real Estate by Dr. Gaylon Greer & Farrel

Real Estate Principals in the New Economy by Miller

Modern Real Estate by Wursebach and Miles

Real Estate Resource Book by Harwood & Ellis

Real Estate Principles – A Value Approach by Ling and Archer

Winning at Zoning by Hinds, Carn and Oidey

Nothing Down by Robert Allen

Creating wealth by Robert Allen

An English Spanish Dictionary by Bienes and Raices

Land Use and Urban Form by Dr. Grant Thrall

The following books I would highly recommend reading first.  They are current, relevant and well written:

Maverick Real Estate Investing by Steve Bergsman

Maverick Real Estate Financing by Steve Bergsman

After the Fall by Steve Bergsman

Note:  Steve has appeared as a guest columnist on my blog site and is an excellent columnist and industry friend.  

Six Reason Most Commercial Real Estate Agents Fail by Top Dogs Commercial Real Estate Training

The 7 Moves to Checkmate in Commercial Real Estate by J. Schott Scheel

The Cheers Model – How to Create Customers as Loyal as Norm Peterson by Michael Synk.

Note:  Not a real estate book, but a must read for anyone working with clients!  I have known Michael for about 8 months and attend his monthly book clubs and other events where is one of the best business coaches in the City of Memphis.

Commercial/ Retail Property Leasing – The Tenant’s Hand Book by Harry Bermingham

Brokers Who Dominate by Rod Santomassimo

Million Dollar Broker by Scott Johnstone

Again, if you have other books that should be on this list please email me the title and author and I will update.

 I hope you will check out future weekly commentary at   If you enjoy the commentary please subscribe online.



Shawn Massey, CCIM, SCLS is a partner with The Shopping Center Group a 3rd party retail real estate advisory firm in their Memphis office, an adjunct professor in the graduate real estate program at The University of Memphis and a co-founder and Chairman of the Board for the Memphis Business Academy charter schools (K-12th grade) in the Frayser area of Memphis.  

For all your retail real estate needs (tenant representation, landlord representation and property, investment & land sales) I hope that you will choose The Shopping Center Group and me to represent you and your business.  We understand that representation is a privilege and that you have a choice!

The opinions expressed in this post are entirely my own.  They should not be considered the opinion of The Shopping Center Group, LLC in which I am associated.

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  1. great list thanks

  2. I want to to thank you for this fantastic read!! I certainly enjoyed every bit of it.
    I have you bookmarked to look at new things you post…

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