Overview:Allied Business Schools, Inc. is a California-based, family-owned distance education school that also offers real estate pre-license courses in Florida, Nevada, Texas, Virginia, and Washington. More than one million students have taken Allied courses over the last 25 years. Allied also offers training for brokers, property inspectors, appraisers, mortgage loan originators, and professional property managers. Because Allied gives its students up to a year to complete courses on their own schedule, its offerings are ideal for working professionals, busy parents, and students with other jobs or responsibilities. Allied’s real estate pre-license curriculum includes a mix of online content, videos, DVDs, and printed textbooks and workbooks. For Allied Business Schools, students achieved an overall pass rate of 53.94% and a sales agent pass rate 53.92%. Allied is an accredited member of the Better Business Bureau and has an A+ rating with the BBB.
Pricing will vary state to state, based on the number of hours and features included.
Here is an example of package offerings:
Principles Course + Exam Prep + Post-License Package: $198
Principles Course and Exam Prep: $148
Allied Schools offer more than 25 real estate courses, with content and hours based on your state’s requirements. Prices for basic packages start around $88 and can range up to $400 for the premium, all-inclusive packages. You can view prices online by selecting the course you are interested in, then scrolling to the options for your state.
Prices depend on the number of hours included in the course, and if you are ordering additional hard copy textbooks. Some of the courses are completely online, and others include PDFs, online quizzes, and other multimedia teaching tools.
Packages and bundles are also available for some states. For example, some states offer a course that includes the principles class plus exam prep and post-license exam. Other premium packages include additional tools, like an exam cram DVD, vocabulary flashcards, math tutor, real estate dictionary, and 110% Money Back Guarantee.
When you choose to purchase your classes online, you may also be offered an additional discount at the point of purchase if you navigate away from the page (a pop-up for a coupon may appear with a discount to entice you to complete your payment).
It’s important to remember that some of your state’s exams may require a proctor for your final exam, and that can entail additional costs and scheduling constraints. Be sure you research that as you are pricing your options and making your timeline. You can call 1-888-501-7686 to learn which courses have a proctor requirement.
- Designation Programs: Maybe you already know you would like to work as a reverse mortgage specialist or you have your mind set on eNetworking. Either way, with Allied, you can choose to specialize in whichever area you want from the very start. That’s because, in order to help you stand apart from the crowd from the very start of your career, Allied allows you to choose among seven designation programs as part of your pre-license training: staging specialist, reverse mortgage specialist, eNetworking specialist, green specialist, FHA specialist, and for Californira students, loan signing specialist and contract forms specialist.
- Exam prep products: All Allied courses include practice questions to help you get ready to pass your state’s real estate license exam. More advanced packages, however, also give you access to a dictionary of real estate terms, real estate flashcards, an Exam Cram DVD, and a 110% money-back guarantee that you will pass your state license exam on the first try.
- Post-licensing education: In order to get the most out of your real estate course, you can always get a package that has both pre-licensing and post-licensing education covered. Some Allied packages include the state-required number of hours for completing both levels of education.
- Student support: Throughout your course, you will be able to contact student support via phone, fax and email. Although this is limited to standard business hours, Allied promises one-on-one service when you reach out to them with a question or problem.
- Money back guarantee: Premium packages in selected states include a 110% money-back guarantee that you’ll pass your state license exam on the first attempt.
Allied has been in the distance learning game for a long time. Since 1992, Allied has developed a comprehensive array of delivery methods to give students the options they need and the instructional approaches that work best for a variety of learning styles. The company has also built a course catalog that serves many types of real estate professionals with licensing and continuing education courses for sales agents, brokers, appraisers, home inspectors, and property managers. In all, Allied offers more than 25 courses that include a combination of online classes, quizzes, and exams, supported by videos, DVDs, textbooks, and workbooks. While these courses may be on the pricier side of average, the supporting material is high quality, and the flexibility is attractive for many professionals looking to continue their education or change careers while still working and keeping up with family responsibilities. All of Allied’s online courses are state-approved and meet the required education hours, and exam preparation materials are included with many of the packages to help you succeed on the state license exam.
Allied’s pre-license courses are conducted online, but the school goes beyond basic digital tools to give students all the resources they need to pass the course and start building a real estate reference shelf they can use once they start their careers. The ability to combine online tools like videos and webinars with printed books and textbooks is attractive to many students, as they like to keep the books as reference materials. Once you receive your course material, you have up to one year to complete your course, unless otherwise stated in the course structure. Upon completion of your course, you’ll have access to the Certificate of Completion that your state requires for you to take your license exam.
Because Allied has open enrollment, students can sign up at any time and get started on their coursework as soon as they’re ready, without having to wait for a new class session to begin. It’s important to remember that some states may require a proctor for your final exam, and that can entail additional costs and scheduling constraints. Be sure you research that as you are pricing your options and making your timeline. You can call 1-888-501-7686 to learn which courses have a proctor requirement.
In some states, students can choose between a complete pre-license package and purchasing the individual classes that make up the package as their time and budget allow. Another convenience Allied offers is the potential to save money on future continuing education classes, which are available for students in California, Texas, and Florida. Students who have completed Allied’s pre-license course are eligible for an “alumni discount” on both post-license courses and courses to help train for other real estate-related careers. Because Allied also offers continuing education and licensing courses for other real-estate related fields, it’s a convenient resource for graduates who want to upgrade to a broker’s license or transition into professional property management later on. Allied also runs a referral program that can help students earn up to $100 per year for referrals that meet the program’s requirements.
All of Allied’s real estate pre-license courses are designed to ensure you meet your state’s required educational hours and to prepare you to successfully take your state’s license exam. With quizzes, practice tests, and self-checks along the way, the curriculum is structured to help students master each concept they encounter before moving on to the next section. Allied also includes special prep tools for state exams, because the material on license exams is not always identical to the topics states require in pre-license courses. On its website, Allied displays the syllabus for each pre-license class it offers, so you know exactly which topics will be covered in each class and course package.
Some of Allied’s premium pre-license packages include more extensive resources to help students get ready for the state exam, including flashcards, a dictionary of real estate terms they’ll need to know ofor the test, and an Exam Cram DVD to help them drill practice questions and see which areas need more study. These advanced packages include a money-back guarantee if students don’t pass the state real estate license exam the first time they take it.
Allied prides itself on partnering with its students and ensuring that support is available, promoting its personalized, one-on-one student support through e-mail, phone, and fax during regular business hours. Allied also offers career-development support with tips on writing effective resumes and cover letters, best practices for networking and job interviews, and more. The school also routinely updates its curriculum so students get information that’s relevant to the state of the industry and real estate laws now.
The courses were designed to not only be comprehensive but also interesting, including diverse learning activities. Quizzes, practice exams, videos, DVDs, textbooks, and workbooks help students with all types of learning preferences understand and retain course information. The premium packages Allied offers include additional tools like an exam cram DVD, vocabulary flashcards, math tutor, real estate dictionary, and 110% Money Back Guarantee that students will be able to pass their state license exam after they complete their classwork and test prep.
Getting started with Allied’s real estate course — knowing which course to order and how to order it — is not as seamless as some other sites, and you must carefully fine print to ensure you’re purchasing exactly what you want. The site pushes you to pre-register and fill out a form for more information. That said, Allied does give students and prospective students access to a responsive support team during regular business hours that may be helpful in understanding exactly which classes they need to take.
- Flexible, self-paced schedule with up to a year to complete a course, which allows students to continue working and/or taking care of family while training for their new real estate career
- High-quality course materials that work for a variety of learning styles and preferences, from webinars and online quizzes to hardbound textbooks and test-prep DVD.
- Responsive live customer support during regular business hours,
- Extensive state exam preparation options, some with a money-back guarantee that students will be able to pass their exam on their first try
- Helpful pre-exam quizzes that students can use to get familiar with the content and the format of their state’s exam
- Customer service could be improved, with poor communication and late delivery of printed materials mentioned by some reviewers
- Difficult refund policy was an issue for some students who left reviews
- Deadlines and exam expiration dates may be confusing; students should make careful note of all deadlines when the course begins to ensure they stay on track and up-to-date
“I did the online course and passed the State Exam on my first try! The course is very user-friendly. You have to put in the time but the instructor in the narrated course gives examples that help you learn and make similar terms able to understand and differentiate. I bought the book as well and after each narrated chapter, I did the corresponding chapter in the book. VERY HELPFUL! I would recommend Florida Real Estate School to anyone looking to get their license. Thank you!” – Yelp
“the Crash video is boring and not at all interactive or interesting. They expect you to learn everything by reading the material and then taking multiple choice quizzes. Should update with more interactive teaching styles. I learned more by watching free youtube videos that made the material relevant to everyday life.” – Google
“I signed up to do real estate school with this company. I only had an act for maybe a week. I paid the first payment of around $113. I with in a week found out I will be moving back out of state so I called to cancel the school. I was told to send the books back that I had gotten that day and a refund minus 20% cancellation fee would be refunded to my act with in 30 days. I went to the post office and paid $33 to send the books back. I just called to check on my refund and was told I owe them $59 for canceling. I was told I would have a refund.” – BBB
Allied Real Estate School has many students leaving positive reviews about its user-friendly site and relevant, engaging, and varied course material. Although Allied’s pre-license courses are among the more expensive options available, students who have completed Allied courses often say the curriculum is among the best, and the state exam prep materials are top-notch. Unfortunately, the higher price tag does not come with flawless customer service, although overall, Allied’s customer service is better-reviewed than many other real estate schools. Still, some students have complained of Allied Real Estate’s difficult to navigate refund policy, as well as its sometimes slow response time in sending out textbooks and fixing site or course issues. Other students have noted that while the overall course material is good quality, it is not engaging or as interactive as they would like. However, compared to real estate courses that present all the material in PDF format, Allied seems to offer a more modern and less dry approach to pre-license coursework.
Allied Real Estate School focuses on its student support and wide range of learning tools to help ensure students pass their state license exams (as evidenced by the available money-back guarantee). It offers a mid-range option in terms of price and available tools. While Allied Real Estate School’s site is not the most technologically advanced, it seems to get the job done with fair pass rates and available student support. If you’re willing to spend a little more, you can access Allied’s more extensive learning tools and optional resources to give you a more comprehensive pre-license and exam-prep learning experience, including flash cards, a test-prep DVD, and exam practice questions. Allied’s courses offer flexibility and comprehensive content that adequately prepare you to take you licensing exams, perhaps without all the bells and whistles of other schools, but with good results.
Headquarters: 22952 Alcalde Drive Laguna Hills, CA 92653