One of the most fortunate things about living in the state of California is that this is a region of the country that is always growing in terms of population, and always in demanded for new places to live and work. And that means that real estate here is always experiencing some kind of growth, making it a very lucrative place to start a career in this industry. This isn’t like some less fortunate areas, such as Detroit, where trying to convince people to buy property in a neighborhood can be a challenge. When a home, commercial site or other property becomes available in California, there’s always going to be someone waiting for the chance to take that deal, and if you’re a real estate agent, you can profit from all this growth.
That’s why the decision to get into the real estate industry in California isn’t just smart, it’s often profitable. But deciding to get into real estate isn’t like being an entrepreneur. You can’t just decide to open an office, call yourself a real estate agent and start chasing sales. You need to be a professionally certified and recognized, and that means taking a real estate course to prepare you for writing the exam that will grant you your license to start working.
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In the past, taking a real estate course meant a pretty significant sacrifice of time. A real estate course in the 20th century often meant locating the town or city where the course was being taught, and, if you didn’t live in that area, either commuting to attend classes, or moving so you could have more access. And of course, a real estate course taught in a traditional class structure takes time, meaning you either committed your days to attending the classes, or cleared out your nights to do the same.
Either way, the end result was clear. If you were already a working adult with both professional and family obligations, this choice demanded a lot of time. Anyone looking at some professional development to increase the quality of life for yourself or your family, didn’t usually that much leisure time available. This made it extremely hard for established professionals or employees to get an opportunity to take part in an industry that might have actually been a better fit.
Thankfully, these days a lot of things have changed. A real estate course can be easily taught online, and in fact, they’ve been doing so since the 1990s. Unlike a lot of other classes, such as broadcasting or audio engineering, a real estate course doesn’t require students to have access to specialized equipment in order to work. All you need is your mind, a willingness to learn, and a good work ethic.
But because of the ease with which you can sign up for an online real estate course, this means that a lot of choices are open to you, and not all of them are good ones. So what can you do to ensure that you pick the real estate course that actually works best for you? There are a few criteria that you need to look at to make sure that your choice is a good one.
The good news is, you can take an online real estate course from just about anywhere and your location and the location of the real estate course itself doesn’t matter. The bad news is, this means you have to be careful about which educational materials the real estate course focuses on. Just like a taking an online driving course for your driver’s license, you need to make sure that school you’re interested offers the materials you need in order to write and pass the license exam for your state.
Always make sure that when you’re looking at a good school, you make sure that your state is covered. Real Estate Express, for example, covers only California and Texas. Kaplan Real Estate School, on the other hand has a real estate course for every state and district in the country. So once you’ve established which schools are relevant to your state of interest—and in this case, we’re sticking with California—you need to start looking at other factors to separate your best real estate course selections from the rest.
If you’re going to spend time investing in yourself, you want to see returns on that investment. A real estate course is only good to you if come away from it writing and passing your license exam. You need to feel like you’ve learned enough to make your own contribution to the industry.
The best schools will be easy to research when it comes to the results of their work. Websites like this one review individual schools in-depth, while numerous user reviews are available on the Internet that give you the customer-view of their course experience. These differing sources are a good way of tracking down which schools have actually provided a quality education.
The other aspect you can look at are the cold, hard, numbers provided by statistics. Real Estate Express has one of the best pass rates for a school at 79%, so that’s a very good vote of confidence. Career Webschool has a 59% pass rate, which is lower, but they also provide contingencies, such as paying for your second exam if you should enroll them and then fail to pass your exam the first time.
This is one of those areas that depends entirely on your personal preferences. If you don’t like interacting with others, and would prefer to simply have text materials to read and study, some schools may be better than others. Different people will have different learning styles, so it’s important you know what yours is and then look for schools that match up with that optimal path.
Career Webschool, for example, allows you interact with instructors strictly through e-mail. For some, this may be the ideal form of communication, especially if you don’t like face-to-face interactions. Kaplan Real Estate School has actual virtual classrooms, where you can participate in a virtual video lecture with an instructor and other students, and, if need be, ask questions on the spot and get answers.
The best real estate course for learning online is, ultimately the one that meets the greatest number of personal needs you have. Take the time to look over each school and see how they align with your preferences. If you read much faster than you can consume video content or a lecture, then pick the school that provides this for you. If you want to be able to interact directly with an instructor, take the course that gives you this option. Then get ready to study and work hard.
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