12 Best Property Management Courses Online for Professionals in 2023
Multiple facets of the property industry intersect and are ever-changing. For example, real estate finance affects leasing and is affected by building maintenance. Proptech is in wide use and new laws require sustainable construction and maintenance practices. Because of this, it is critical for property managers to constantly educate themselves.
There is a multitude of online, in-person, and hybrid certifications that can help you stay informed and improve your revenue. If you’re serious about a career in property management, then here’s a collection of the best property management courses online.
Best Property Management Courses Online – Overview
Contrary to popular belief, property managers are responsible for more than just collecting rent and carrying out evictions. They stand in for the owner of a rental property to perform numerous functions on their behalf, including managing lease information, contracts, and paperwork, organizing repairs, conducting move-in/out inspections, and much more.
Referred to as estate or letting agents, property managers can cover residential, retail, commercial, and industrial properties. Specialized areas of property management include student housing and sustainable management practices.
According to Salary.com, the median salary of a property manager is around $109k, although salaries can vary widely. While they report over $180k a year on the high end, Indeed.com reports a much lower average of around $46k.
Licensing requirements can vary between states. Over two-thirds of all states require a Real Estate Broker License and a handful require some form of community-level registration, certification, or license. Others like Idaho, Massachusetts, and Vermont, require nothing more than a high school diploma and some experience in the role.
British property managers and letting agents are also required to be part of a government-approved redress scheme. On the other side of the pond, landlords are largely exempt from these requirements in the management of their own properties. Nevertheless, it certainly behooves property owners to educate themselves in management.
Finally, Proptech, or property technology, has revolutionized the property industry by merging it with software solutions, which facilitate selling and buying, management, development, and investment for property professionals.
Smart real estate technology for remotely managing a home, such as the Internet of Things (IoT) and real estate fintech solutions, are two vibrant Proptech sectors populated by hundreds of companies. A few online property management courses cover those areas.
Before delving into a course, do your research. The opportunities, local associations, and requirements in your area directly impact what course you should choose. Here’s a tour of property management courses that can help you achieve your aspirations in the field.
Best Property Management Courses Online 2023 – Top Picks
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Note: This list gives an overview of the best property management courses online. However, there are many other property management online classes available.
1. Property Management: Marketing, Contracts and Administration – University of Cape Town, GetSmarter
University of Cape Town’s Property Management program (visit course) on GetSmarter is offered by the Faculty of Engineering and the Built Environment (EBE). Founded in 1829, it is the oldest university in South Africa and this certificate property management course is for everyone from property owners and managers to private investors and realtors.
UCT’s course is certified by the Engineering Council of South Africa (ECSA) and South African engineering professionals can earn up to 8 Continual Professional Development (CPD) credits, with an estimated 80 hours of learning over its eight-week duration.
Professor Kathy Mitchel is the Associate Professor at UCT’s Department of Construction Economics and Management and teaches a range of property ownership skills in this best property management course. Learners study the tenant screening process and strategic leasing, among other skills necessary for successful property ownership.
You’ll also learn about Proptech platforms that solve a range of real estate problems. GetSmarter students enjoy access to their Career Engagement Network.
Provider: University of Cape Town, GetSmarter | Time: 8 weeks | Certificate: Yes.
Level: Professionals + Managers | Pace: Instructor-lead | Price: $502
Info: Visit course website. Get free prospectus. Browse all online courses in this category.
2. Effective Property Management Advanced Course – Udemy
Effective Property Management Advanced Course (visit website) is taught by Nelius Smit, a South African property industry veteran with over 23 years of experience. He managed a 4 billion Rand (around $213m) property portfolio and continues to manage properties and educate those wishing to enter the field.
Smit’s course is for those just starting out in residential property management of multi-unit buildings. Module One covers self-management, the advantages of working with a firm versus working individually, and the basics of what a property manager does. Smit also goes over property taxes and expenses, the rent roll, and management agreements.
Module Two introduces property owner licenses, utility board records, how to handle rent increases and fill vacant units, and when you should renovate. In the final module, Smit teaches how to apply what you have learned and improve your status as a property manager in the industry.
No prerequisites or prior knowledge is required. Nevertheless, Smit does suggest that you watch his free online property management course before you start Module One.
Instructor: Nelius Smit | Skill Level: Beginners
Lectures: 18 | Video: 1.5 hours | User Rating: 4.5 ★★★★☆
Price: From $11.99. Up to 95% off. Browse category on Udemy.
3. How To Start a Profitable Property Management Company? – Udemy
How to Start a Profitable Property Management Company? (visit website) is a course led by Ebonie Caldwell, a real estate investor, and managing broker with 20 years of industry experience. Caldwell specializes in rehab properties and commercial real estate.
Caldwell shares her insights in launching and marketing a property management business, evaluating and selecting investment properties, and managing real estate assets, while also diving into tenant screening, establishing favorable leasing terms, fielding maintenance requests, and hiring employees and contractors.
You’ll also cover the crucial legal and financial details related to property management. This online property management course provides learners with a thorough overview of property management and real estate investment in general. It could be a great starting point for anyone who is still deciding whether to enter the industry or not.
Instructor: Ebonie Caldwell | Skill Level: Beginners
Lectures: 11 | Video: 3 hours | User Rating: 4.4 ★★★★☆
Price: From $11.99. Up to 95% off. Browse category on Udemy.
4. Property Management Certificate – New York Real Estate Institute (NYREI)
Property Management Certificate is offered by the New York Real Estate Institute (NYREI), the self-styled “gold standard in the industry since 1987”. NYREI’s comprehensive property management course covers topics that span land development and construction, as well as all facets of property investment and property management.
Focused on refreshing and enhancing the knowledge of working professionals in the property industry, this course is online but not self-paced. Participants meet on Zoom and are taught by the project manager and Adjunct Professor Salvador Rozenberg, who is also the Director of Operations at NYREI. November 2023 is your next opportunity to enroll.
Rozenberg breaks the property management course up into 8 topics that cover communication skills, building compliance, debt-equity load and software systems, bookkeeping, and zoning, among other things. He also invites expert guest speakers to present and organizes an NYC field trip for each class.
NYREI’s certificate course is accredited to provide the 22½ hours of continuing education required to keep a real estate license valid in New York. However, the duration of the course or how many sessions learners are required to attend to complete it is unclear.
Nevertheless, NYREI’s website says that industry professionals from all over the U.S. and several other countries have taken the course and found it valuable. Those studying under a workplace continuing education program, can submit an additional course paper and earn a grade to get their tuition reimbursed.
Platform: New York Real Estate Institute | Style: Instructor-led Zoom classes
Level: Intermediate + Advanced | Price: Various packages. From $425
5. Property Management Certificate – Penn Foster
Penn Foster’s Property Management Certificate is a ten-month, self-paced course for working professionals “who are looking to expand their property knowledge for professional enrichment purposes”. Located in Scranton, Pennsylvania, Penn Foster has been around for more than 125 years.
Class requirements include being 17 or older, having a high school diploma or equivalent, and owning Windows 10/macOS Sierra 11.2 or later on your computer. Although there are no other educational or professional prerequisites, the course page advises that certificate courses are generally not enough to get employed at entry level.
This certification course provides “foundational knowledge” in the areas of real estate law, tenant relations, fair housing, risk management and property valuations. Learners will get strategies for managing both commercial and residential rentals.
As with other property management certifications, you should check with your state or local board to find out if this course helps you meet licensing requirements.
Platform: Penn Foster | Style: Self-paced property management certificate program
Level: Intermediate + Advanced | Price: $479
6. IREM Certified Property Manager (CPM) – Institute for Real Estate Management (IREM)
Certified Property Manager (CPM) by the Institute for Real Estate Management (IREM) is the global industry standard for experienced professionals and course prerequisites include 3 years of real estate management experience. Students learn how to “maximize the value of any property, in any asset class” and greatly increase their income potential.
Headquartered in Chicago, Illinois, the IREM boasts 96 chapters in the U.S. and beyond, with its mission being to advance the profession of real estate management. They offer both in-person and online courses, as well as a wide range of tools, publications and networking opportunities to support professionals in the property industry.
CPM is taught in 8 modules over the course of a year and these include “Ethics for the Real Estate Manager”, “Leading a Winning Property Management Team”, and “Asset Analysis of Investment Real Estate”. Enrollment includes a one-year IREM membership and the opportunity to earn a digital badge on completion.
If you need assistance with the tuition, which includes a one-time enrollment fee of $425, you can apply for member-funded IREM Foundation scholarships.
Platform: Institute for Real Estate Management | Style: Classroom course + exam
Level: Intermediate + Advanced | Price: $7,500-$8,500
7. Certified Apartment Manager – National Apartment Association (NAA)
Certified Apartment Manager (CAM) is an in-person or online property management class offered by the National Apartment Association Education Institute (NAAEI). While NAA is headquartered in Arlington, Virginia, in-person courses are offered via local affiliates in numerous states. To qualify, you need 1 year of onsite apartment management experience.
Enrollment starts the six-month period during which learners need to complete all their coursework. After completing the 8 modules, you’ll finish the course with a four-hour, online comprehensive exam to earn your digital badge. CAM covers, among other topics, financial management, marketing, risk management, and “The Resident Experience”.
Once you’ve earned your CAM, the NAAEI offers several other property management courses, including a micro-credential in Student Housing. Your CAM credential requires annual renewal via 8 hours of continuing education and an additional fee to remain valid. If you join your local chapter, NAA members get a discount on course tuition.
Platform: National Apartment Association | Style: Self-paced + self-assessment
Level: Intermediate | Price: $900 for members; $1,125 for non-members. View.
8. Property Management Online Course – Ashworth College
Career Diploma in Property Management by Ashworth College is a self-guided course that should take you around 4 months to complete. If you’re a real estate professional seeking insight into a range of relevant property management topics, this course is perfect for you.
It begins with an orientation module that covers general online learning and provides an overview of the traits and skills you’ll need to succeed in the industry. In the module “Operations and Tenants”, learners explore recordkeeping, maintenance, hiring, leases, and common landlord-tenant issues.
The final unit covers a range of business aspects involved in property management. Enrollment gives you access to The CompleteLandlord.com Ultimate Property Management Handbook, as well as networking and job opportunities.
An interesting fact about Ashford College is that, when it opened its doors in Norcross, Georgia in 1987, the only class on offer was a distance education course in real estate appraisal. Encouraged by the course’s popularity, Ashworth added more online property management courses to expand their portfolio, including this valuable career diploma.
Platform: Ashworth College | Style: Self-paced instruction via student portal
Level: Intermediate | Price: Various packages. From $59 to start. View.
9. Master Property Manager (MPM) – National Association of Residential Property Managers (NARPM)
Master Property Manager (MPM) by the National Association of Residential Property Managers (NARPM) is a prerequisite for your business to become a Certified Residential Management Company, which is their highest distinction. Residential Management Professional (RMP) is the prerequisite for the MPM.
To qualify for enrollment in the RMP, you must already be managing or have managed at least 100 units for at least 2 years. In addition to earning the RMP, the MPM requires a minimum of 5 years of experience managing at least 500 units.
Although the curriculum is not available on the property management course page, such high standards for entry indicate that this certification covers all the topics you’ll need and carries a lot of credibility for those who earn it.
Located in Chesapeake, Virginia, NARPM has existed for 35 years and represents real estate brokers, agents, managers, and property industry employees. Their certification courses set a high standard with stringent prerequisites at each level.
Platform: NARPM | Style: 6-hour educational courses
Level: Advanced | Price: $250 application fee + additional costs
10. Real Estate Property Management – eCornell
Real Estate Property Management is Cornell University’s guided certificate course taught by Jeanne Varney, Senior Lecturer at the Nolan School of Hotel Administration. It is ideal for both aspiring or working property managers, real estate developers and investors.
With a program duration of 3 months at 2 weeks per course, Professor Varney teaches a robust syllabus that includes outsourcing, joint maintenance, lease strategies, mortgages, and property value enhancement. You’ll also learn building systems, equipment management, and sustainability in building design and operation.
To complete this program, you should expect 3-5 hours of coursework per week. Learners walk away with a certificate from Cornell SC Johnson College of Business and 60 Professional Development Hours (6 CEUs). It also contributes 60 credits towards the BOMI Continuing Professional Development Program (CPD).
Platform: eCornell | Style: Instructor-led classes of max 35 students
Level: Advanced Beginners + Intermediate | Price: $3,900 or $700/month
11. Property Law and Management Course – Alison
Property Law and Management is Alison’s free certificate course for property management professionals working or entering the industry in the U.K. Particularly useful for real estate lawyers and accountants, 4-5 hours of learning provide insight into property rights, ownership, agreements, property insurance, mortgages, and taxes.
You can take the property management course through a browser or on Alison’s app, using your iOS or Android device. No prerequisites are required to enroll. Upon completion of your final assessment, you’ll earn a CPD (Continuing Professional Development) accredited certificate.
Platform: Alison | Style: On-demand video + final assessment
Level: Advanced Beginners + Intermediate | Price: Free
12. Property Management Course – UCLA Extension
Property Management by UCLA Extension covers office, retail, industrial, apartment, and condominium building management topics. In under 3 months, learners explore the responsibilities of the property manager/owner, landlord-tenant law, and vendor services, among numerous other topics. While it’s self-guided, assignments are due regularly.
Learners are also exposed to insurance, human resources, office administration, and financial statements. What’s great about UCLA Extension is that it offers open enrollment for continuing education learners to take a wide range of property management courses.
Platform: UCLA Extension | Style: Online, in-person, or hybrid
Level: Beginners | Price: $855
Choosing the Best Property Management Courses Online
As the real estate cliché goes, the top 3 factors that should guide your property management course selection are location, location, location. Although some online property management courses have widely applicable content, your working location as a property manager should narrow down your options overall.
As a follow-up consideration, your reason for taking the program will help pinpoint the right one for you. Some sources of motivation can include:
- Exploring your interest in the property industry;
- Upskilling yourself as a property manager;
- Adding recognized credentials to your personal brand;
- Increasing your earning potential; and
- Fulfilling required continuing education hours or hours toward the renewal of your licenses and property management certifications.
Indeed, cost is always a factor to consider. However, affordable and free online property management courses in this field generally don’t offer what a working professional needs to keep their credentials current and resume relevant.
Course content varies widely, so you should also be clear on what property category you are interested in managing and what aspects of management you’d like to focus on.
Best Property Management Courses 2023 – Summary
Wrapping up our tour of the best property management courses online in 2023. Property management courses are rather specialized in their content, with geography being the biggest distinction between them. Although most courses are available online, taking a course in U.K. property management won’t be of much help to you in the U.S.
Other content variations include property type and subject focus, so you need to scrutinize each syllabus carefully. That said, many of the property management courses online are highly valuable, offering up-to-date information and insight from industry experts.
If you’re new to the industry, your most important asset will be your capacity to gain a wealth of property management experience and a degree/certificate from a serious course of study. Additional certificates and digital badges can be earned after you’re licensed with a few years under your belt, which are vital in building your brand.
Best Property Management Courses Online 2023
- Property Management: Marketing, Contracts and Administration – University of Cape Town, GetSmarter
- Effective Property Management Advanced Course – Udemy
- How To Start a Profitable Property Management Company? – Udemy
- Property Management Certificate – New York Real Estate Institute (NYREI)
- Property Management Certificate – Penn Foster
- IREM Certified Property Manager (CPM) – Institute for Real Estate Management (IREM)
- Certified Apartment Manager – National Apartment Association (NAA)
- Property Management Online Course – Ashworth College
- Master Property Manager (MPM) – National Association of Residential Property Managers (NARPM)
- Real Estate Property Management – eCornell
- Property Law and Management Course – Alison
- Property Management Course – UCLA Extension
Other Property Management Courses Online
- YouTube – Matt Easton – View
- TikTok – WealthByRealEstate – View
- Certified Manager of Commercial Properties – BOMA International
- Real Estate (Property) Management – Cambridge International College
- Certified Leasing Consultant Credential – Leasing University
What are the best property management courses online for 2023, in your opinion? Which property management online programs have you taken? What have you learned? Please let us know in the comments below, or contact us via email for questions.