Property Management is a booming industry, with over 280 property management firms in the United States alone, generating over $76 billion in revenue. Hired by various parties, such as those who wish to earn profits from their rental properties (whether as owners or investors) and require the services of an expert to do so. They’re also hired by property owners who wish to run affordable housing programs, as property managers have all the required knowledge of not just the business, but the law as well, filling any gap between the owner and the program.
Property management involves the overseeing of any commercial, residential or real estate property, whether they’re condos, entire units (such as shopping centers), apartments and independent houses. Property managers manage the functioning of these spaces on behalf of a third party, generally the owner, in order to generate income and maintain the property’s value.
Though some real estate brokers also work as property managers, property management is not to be confused with real estate management — the two are separate industries, though they are mistaken for each other due to the overlap of certain factors, generally the involvement in dealing with housing. Some of the differences are:
- Real estate management involves listing and selling property on behalf of their owners, whereas property managers manage the property on behalf of their owners, such as overseeing repairs, maintenance, and any issues tenants bring or face.
- Real estate management is transactional, whereas property management is contractual, with property managing getting a cut of the rent collected for their services.
- The slumps of the real estate industry do not often affect the property management industry; in fact, owners turn to property managers to rent out their property during such slumps.
If property management has always caught your fancy, there are a host of online courses to cater to the needs of aspirants in this field. Whether you want to manage a commercial or residential property, here’s a list of some of the best online courses to help you in your journey to becoming a property manager.
Fundamentals of Residential Property Management — Udemy
Whether you want to be a property manager or are a landlord who wishes to learn the ropes of the trade, this course from Udemy provides a primer to interested students. Students can learn about a variety of topics related to residential property management, such as leasing, handling maintenance, establishing policies and procedures, and understanding the Fair Housing Laws and their impacts on property, to name a few. After this course, students will be well-equipped to understand the running of rental properties and apartment complexes and is highly recommended for property managers, landlords, and real estate agents just as much as it is recommended for those just starting out in the field.
Career Diploma in Property Management — Ashworth College
If property management is more than just a passion or hobby on the side, this career diploma from Ashworth College is highly recommended. Designed by industry experts who bring their first-hand experience in real estate to the table, the course covers a wide variety of topics, ranging from escalation to budgeting to laws and regulations. It also helps aspiring property managers to develop their people skills and practical knowledge. Like most online courses, you can do this course at your own convenience — you can enroll at any time and hold a diploma after just 4 months. Additionally, the course doesn’t require any prior training or eligibility criteria.
Finance and Property Management — NARPM
The National Association of Residential Property Managers isn’t just recognized for being the industry leader and association body; they also offer a range of courses to help property managers tread easily down their career path and enhance career prospects. The Finance and Property Management course tackles one of the trickiest aspects of most businesses — the financial side. Through this 3-hour online course, students delve deep into the nitty-gritty of property management finances, such as best practices, terminology, trust accounting, budgeting, and ethical practices. They also have a student support team that you can reach out to for any distance-learning issue.
Commercial Property Management — Udemy
The Commercial Property Management offered by Udemy is designed for intermediate-level students, providing an insight into the role of a property manager in commercial buildings, such as hotels, shopping centers, and offices. This includes learning about service providers management, managing tenants and differentiating repetitive tasks from ad-hoc ones, among others. As a bonus, the course also provides excel spreadsheets for each of its chapters, which students can download and customize for their buildings. Though the course doesn’t have any pre-requisites and provides general information on commercial property management, it’s especially helpful for professionals in the commercial property industry. Students are provided with lifetime access to the material and attain a course completion certificate.
NARPM Property Management Training Courses
As mentioned earlier, NARPM offers a variety of courses to help professionals in the field. Though courses are designed for professionals, they can be taken by any member or non-member at any point in time. As a part of this series, NARPM offers a variety of 3-hour, 6-hour and 8-hour courses, such as:
Basic Courses (6 Hours)
- NARPM 101: Basics of Property Management
- Marketing for Residential Property Management
Property Manager Series Courses (6 Hours)
- Developing Rewarding Owner Relationships
- Risk Awareness
- Personnel Procedures Essentials — Hiring and Firing
Maintenance Series Courses (6 Hours)
- Intro to Maintenance — Covering the Basics of Standards, Codes and Safety
- In-House Maintenance — Running a Profitable Operation
- Maintenance: Beyond the Basics
Broker/Manager/Owner Series Courses (6 Hours)
- Office Operations — Policy and Procedures
- Advanced Risk Management
- Personnel Procedures Advanced
- Mastering Owner-Client Relations
- Finance: Cash-Flow Analysis (for advanced learners)
All these courses are professional courses that provide in-depth learning in their respective areas, ranging from managing a property to marketing it to maintaining it to how to efficiently run a property management firm. Whether you’re a beginner eager to learn more or a professional looking to refresh your basics, there’s a course for every type of learner at NARPM.
Effective Property Management Advanced Course Module 1 — Udemy
Learning the ropes of property management isn’t just limited to the property managers; it’s also essential for those who wish to become landlords. This 1-hour course provides advanced learning to students, helping them easily and effectively become efficient landlords by delving into topics such as strategies to establish and maintain rental properties, the advantages of self-management, the upside and downside to being in this business and managing the taxes and expenses involved. It also equips students with the knowledge to identify the markers of a good deal and any pitfalls that there may be, as well as how to overcome these. This module is also followed by two more course modules — Advanced Course Module 2 and Advanced Course Module 3.
Property Management: Marketing, Contracts and Administration — GetSmarter
Identifying the core place that property management holds in the property industry, the Property Management course from the University of Cape Town (available on GetSmarter) aims to impart knowledge of principles and techniques to students, private investors and professionals in the field alike. The course looks at various topics such as maintenance, administration, budgeting, relationship management and marketing, as well as the role of technology in the field. By the end of this 8-week course, students — both beginners and professionals — will be better equipped to understand leases, screen tenants, draw up budgets for properties, come up with a maintenance plan, resolve issues between any of the involved parties, and integrate technology into property management.
How to Analyze the Financials on a Rental Property — Udemy
This course from Udemy also looks at the financial side of property management but from a more investment-oriented point of view. Through this course, students will learn how to analyze financials of a rental property, estimate/calculate cash flow from investments, learn the BRRR strategy (Buy, Renovate, Rent, Refinance and Repeat), scaling up and buying investment properties through bank loans and refinancing. Open to all those who are interested in real estate investment, this 1-hour course will help learners figure out the profitability level of a deal, helping them make better investment decisions, while also systematically building their wealth.
Whether you’re a beginner or a seasoned professional, whether your aim is to learn more or refresh your basics, whether property management is a serious career or a passion and whether you want a certification or just want to learn for knowledge’s sake, there’s a property management course out there to cater to every purpose, preference and budget. Considering the lucrative nature of the field, investing in a property management course is wise and sure to pay off, both in terms of knowledge gain and enhanced career prospects.