Enhance your career skills with Penn Foster Career School’s Online Property Management Certificate Program. You can learn more about forming good tenant relations, fair housing regulations, building maintenance, and managing properties such as single-family homes, commercial real estate, multifamily communities, and community associations. With Penn Foster Career School, you train at home and at a pace that's right for you. And you can complete this program in as little as five months.
Program Goal and Outcomes
The Property Management Career Certificate program provides students with an understanding of property management and may help those in the real estate field advance in their careers.
Upon completion of the program, students will be able to:
- Understand the duties of a property manager, what types of properties use management services, and the qualities necessary for a property manager
- Identify the different types of business ownership; understand the principles of business ethics and economics, including the concept of supply and demand
- Understand the basics of building maintenance, including issues related to lighting for aesthetics and safety, HVAC systems, plumbing, and safety systems such as smoke alarms and sprinklers
- Explain how to establish and maintain successful relationships with tenants through communication and understanding of tenant needs
- Understand important accounting principles and concepts, including periodic and perpetual inventory systems, cash and accounts receivable, financial statements, and long-term assets and debt on the balance sheet; estimate a property’s financial performance and valuation
- Identify the types of deeds and their content; interpret real estate descriptions in deeds; define encumbrances, easements, and licenses
- Recognize effective management strategies for commercial, multifamily, and single family rentals, including how to advertise, evaluate credit reports, and schedule turnovers to minimize downtime between tenants
- Identify everyday challenges of community association management; list several different types of tenant associations
- Identify the key points that make an office building attractive to tenants and profitable for owners; determine whether a property maintains proper cash flow and if it’s a worthy investment
- Demonstrate computer literacy using office software
- List the various types of insurance coverage
- Identify protected classes of people on a federal and municipal level and differentiate between properties that are bound by and those that are exempted from fair-housing law
- Understand how to determine if a property needs a risk-management audit and how to shift risk liability to a third party using insurance and other methods
Starting Your Program
Succeed by learning how to use your Penn Foster program.
- Understand how to use your Student Portal, including your My Homepage and My Courses pages.
- Access the Penn Foster Community and use it to find answers.
- Connect with Penn Foster on various social media sites.
Property Management Orientation
Learn how to be successful in your program, and get an introduction to the world of real estate management.
- Understand how to use study materials, prepare for and take exams, access and use our website, create a study schedule, and determine your learning style.
- Understand the duties of a property manager.
- Know what types of properties use management services and the positions involved with each.
- Describe the qualities necessary for a property manager.
- Explain what a rental turnover is.
- Follow the step-by-step process of replacing one tenant with the next.
This course will allow you to build your computer skills through a combination of reading and hands-on practice. You will navigate popular software tools such as Windows® and Microsoft® Office.
- Create, edit, and illustrate Microsoft® Word™ documents.
- Apply formulas and functions to large data sets in Microsoft® Excel.®
- Incorporate useful charts and graphs to summarize data.
- Add, delete, sort, and lay out table data.
- Create presentations in Microsoft® PowerPoint® using advanced tools, tables, and charts.
Introduction to Business
This lesson is designed to introduce you to basic business concepts, theories, and perspectives. It will serve as a basis for further learning in your program.
- Understand the principles of business ethics and basic economics, including the concept of supply and demand.
- Compare the different types of business ownership.
- Describe the basics of organizational structure.
- Identify the differences between management and leadership.
- Understand the importance of information technology in today’s business environments.
Additional Course Material
Textbook: Introduction to Business
Managing Building Maintenance and Tenant Relations
This course provides a comprehensive overview of the maintenance requirements for multifamily rental communities, as well as an understanding of how to establish and maintain successful relationships with tenants.
- Understand the basics of building maintenance.
- Create a lighting system that provides aesthetics and safety for your building.
- Perform regular preventive checks on your HVAC systems.
- Keep plumbing lines free and investigate hot-water problems.
- Prepare for inspections of safety systems such as smoke alarms and sprinklers.
- Ensure safety and hygiene of gyms, pools, saunas, and other common amenities.
- Understand Maslow’s hierarchy of needs and how it relates to tenant motivations.
- Form positive relationships with tenants.
- Communicate with tenants via bulletin boards, newsletters, e-mail, web sites, and social media.
- Respond to tenant issues with proper resolutions.
Financial Accounting and Property Valuation
In this course you’ll learn about important accounting principles and concepts that are used throughout the business world. It will provide the knowledge you need to estimate a property’s financial performance and valuation.
- Understand periodic and perpetual inventory systems.
- Account for the purchases and sales of inventory.
- Understand cash and accounts receivable.
- Prepare financial statements using the general journal, general ledger, and trial balance.
- Report current liabilities, long-term assets, and long-term debt on the balance sheet.
- Understand the role of ethics in accounting, the use of internal controls, and the major provisions of the International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS).
Additional Course Materials
Textbook: Financial Accounting
Supplement: Financial Accounting Solution Manual
Real Estate Law
This course is designed to teach you the basics of real estate law. Although laws vary some from state to state, most of the principles are the same in all states.
- Understand the types, content, and preparation of deeds.
- Understand how real estate is described in deeds.
- Define and give examples of encumbrances, easements, and licenses.
- Describe some of the ways government regulates the use of real estate.
- Describe the components of a real estate purchase contract and the real estate closing process.
Additional Course Material
Textbook: Reality of Real Estate
Property Management: Multifamily and Community Associations
This course is designed to provide a comprehensive overview of effective management strategies for multifamily rental communities. You’ll also learn what a community association is and how it’s organized.
- Advertise effectively.
- Evaluate credit reports.
- Schedule turnovers to minimize downtime between tenants.
- Exercise preventive maintenance.
- Apply effective safety and security measures.
- Recognize your rights and responsibilities with rental regulations.
- Describe several different types of associations.
- Work with a board and its members and establish successful communications among all parties.
- Identify everyday challenges of community association management.
- Build a management business through successful marketing and communications strategies.
- Explain the accounting, staffing, and maintenance practices used by property managers.
Property Management: Commercial and Single Family
This course is designed to provide a comprehensive overview of effective management strategies for properties approved for commercial use and for single-family rental homes.
- Identify the key points that make an office building attractive to tenants and profitable for owners.
- Analyze whether a property located in the central business district or suburban area is the best choice based on the intended usage.
- Construct a reliable competitive market analysis to determine a property’s investment potential.
- Attract anchor retailers and negotiate leases for big chain stores.
- Understand the difference between the liability risk of an individual property owner and that of a limited liability corporation (LLC).
- Determine whether a property maintains proper cash flow and if it’s a worthy investment.
- Utilize effective advertising techniques to attract quality prospects.
- Analyze and process credit reports.
- Compose legally sound leasing documents.
- Perform quality maintenance and recognize potential hazards.
- Handle difficult tenants and initiate the eviction process.
Risk Management and Fair Housing
This course explores strategic planning and prevention techniques to provide owners and managers with the tools they need to mitigate liability risks, and will also provide an understanding of what defines discrimination and how one would want to avoid it at all costs.
- Shift risk liability to a third party through insurance and noninsurance based methods.
- Evaluate and/or restructure your current risk-management strategies.
- Determine if your property needs a risk-management audit (RMA).
- Ascertain if your property is capable of absorbing your current total cost of risk management.
- Understand the various types of insurance coverage.
- Handle tenant screenings and confidential information in the safest way.
- Identify protected classes of people on a federal and municipal level.
- Differentiate between properties that are bound by and those that are exempted from fair-housing law.
- Understand how the Housing and Urban Development (HUD) testing program works.
- Determine under what circumstances children may be prohibited from properties.
- Institute effective training and application processing protocols to protect yourself from a claim filing.
You will need high-speed internet access to begin your program. You will need access to a Microsoft® Windows® based computer running Windows® 7 or later or an Apple® Mac® computer running OS X® or later, Microsoft® Office 2013, and an email account to complete your program with Penn Foster.
Transfer Credits & Graduate Sooner!
Students can receive advanced academic credit for Microsoft® Office and Introduction to Business, two of the courses in this program. Learn more about our transfer credit policy.
To view a Property Management sample lesson, click here.
Property Management Program Details
In the Penn Foster Career School Property Management training course, you will cover the following topics:
- Tenant relations
- Financial accounting and property valuations
- Real estate law
- Risk management and fair housing
The completion of the Property Management certificate-level course does not typically qualify a student for entry-level employment. This program is intended to provide the student with an opportunity for professional enrichment only. Since states vary in their requirements for individuals to work as property managers, this program will only provide additional knowledge that may be useful if someone is currently employed in a similar position or looking to expand their understanding of property management.
State Licensing Information
Licensing and/or certification requirements for jobs in this field are not the same in every state and may include educational, testing, and/or experiential requirements beyond those offered by your Penn Foster Program. You should contact the state professional licensing board or similar regulatory body in the state(s) where you plan to work to determine their requirements before enrolling in your Program. Please click here for contact information for state licensing/regulatory boards and certain industry licensing information.