Why you should consider Property Management Certifications - Property Vista

February 26, 2013

Why you should consider Property Management Certifications

If you are considering becoming a property manager (PM) in the U.S., property management certificate programs are a good way to start your career. And if you are one already but would like to have the proper credentials that accompany it, this could give your career path an additional boost.

Most states require property managers to have a real estate broker’s license or to be a licensed realtor, employed by a broker. Apart from this, there are a number of property management certifications available, depending on how long you’ve been in the business and what you’re interested in exactly. Depending on the certification which you would like to acquire, there are different organizations you should turn to. Below we present you with a list of the top organizations and certifications in the field:

Credential for Green Property Management (CGPM)

If you’re considering ‘going green’, you might want to check with the National Apartment Association Education Institute (NAAEI) and the National Affordable Housing Management Association (NAHMA). This certification is offered to on-site managers, maintenance staff and supervisors of front-line staff. It is based on green building principles and best practices, and will also give you all the knowledge and techniques you require to work according to the guidelines of the HUD Office of Affordable Housing Preservation (OAHP) when doing green restructuring. By completing 16 hours’ training in a variety of green building topics, you will be able to acquire this credential.

Certified Occupancy Specialist (COS)

Offered by the National Center for Housing Management (NCHM), this certificate is meant for managers working with HUD properties. It includes topics such as how to determine HUD eligibility and all core occupancy standards, Fair Housing, allowances and adjusted income, procedures for regulatory reporting and tenant fraud. Typically, the course takes 3 days with an exam on the last day.

Master Property Manager (MPM)

At the National Association of Residential Property Managers (NARPM), one can become an MPM. This certification is available only after completing certain requirements, such as: having been a licensed real estate agent for at least 5 years, providing verification of 500 unit years of experience, successfully completing 24 hours of approved coursework, and others. NARPM also offers the Residential Management Professional (RMP), which has lower requirements than the MPM, such as having been a licensed real estate agent for at least 2 years, instead of 5.

Certified Property Manager (CPM)

The Institute for Real Estate Management (IREM) offers this certification. It covers 7 courses including Marketing and Leasing, Leadership and Human Resource Essentials, Managing Physical Assets and Financial Tools. To be eligible for the CPM, one needs to have a specified number of years’ experience and be able to prepare a sample management plan for an actual property as well as various other requirements.

Certified Professional Property Specialist (CPPS)

The National Property Management Association (NPMA) offers this introductory certification to those who are new to property management. Once you have acquired the CPPS certificate you will also be eligible to continue with the Certified Professional Property Administrator (CPPA) and the Certified Professional Property Manager (CPPM). The CPPS includes a manual which encompasses all the basics and fundamentals of property management.

Whichever certification you choose from the above, it is sure that it will provide you with a considerable edge over other property managers who have not put time and effort into specializing. It will also be a sign for future tenants or employers that you have the right qualities and proper knowledge for them to be able to trust and work with you.

Which property management certificate did you obtain and why? Join the discussion!

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Jack Beaton Sterling Karamar, Property Management
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