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Do I Need a CPM Certification to Be a Property Manager?

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Property managers oversee rental properties. They collect rent, show units to prospective renters, and schedule maintenance when needed. While a few states require that property managers be licensed, it is not necessary to obtain a professional certification such as the CPM to work as a property manager.

CPM Information

The CPM credential stands for "certified property manager." The CPM credential is awarded by the Institute of Real Estate Management, or IREM. To obtain the CPM credential, a property manager must be a member of IREM, must have at least three years of real estate experience, and must pass an exam.

Benefits of Certification

While professional certification is not a legal necessity for property managers, it can be a wise career step. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that professional certification can improve the employment opportunities of property managers. Certification can also improve earnings; the Institute of Real Estate Management reports that, on average, Certified Property Managers make 13 percent more than similarly-qualified property managers who are not professionally certified.

2016 Salary Information for Property, Real Estate, and Community Association Managers

Property, real estate, and community association managers earned a median annual salary of $57,040 in 2016, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. On the low end, property, real estate, and community association managers earned a 25th percentile salary of $39,910, meaning 75 percent earned more than this amount. The 75th percentile salary is $83,110, meaning 25 percent earn more. In 2016, 317,300 people were employed in the U.S. as property, real estate, and community association managers.