OverviewAs a fully online provider of real estate pre-licensing education, Van Education Center (VanEd) focuses on delivering a comprehensive, easy-to-navigate, and well-organized experience for students seeking flexibility and quality content. Since 1997, more than 23,000 students in Texas, Oklahoma, Colorado, and Nebraska have taken Van Education Center real estate coursework, including 4,000 students who took courses to prepare for their real estate license exams. These numbers make VanEd one of the largest online real estate schools in the nation.
With a student dashboard that is streamlined and easy to use, as well as automatic bookmarking to keep your place, regular quizzes, interactive elements, and the ability to log in from any device or location, the VanEd experience strives to deliver the quality of an in-classroom education with the flexibility and comfort of distance education. Van Education Center is headquartered in Boulder, Colorado and is accredited with the Better Business Bureau. The BBB gives Van Education Center an A+ rating.
Van Education Center currently offers pre-licensing courses for Colorado, Oklahoma, Nebraska, and Texas, and pricing varies depending on the state and number of hours included, but here is an example of typical pricing structure. The basic package for pre-licensing covers all required hours and includes state-approved core classes, along with an orientation, exam prep for both general and state-specific exams, and online proctoring, all for around $495. You can also buy a package that includes the three SAE courses needed to satisfy your initial post-license education requirement (90 hours), bringing you up to 270 credit hours for around $799.
A separate exam prep combo course (covering general exam prep and state of Texas specific content) is available for $99, while a la carte courses are available for around $145 each (you receive 10% when purchasing two individual courses at once, or 20% off when purchasing three individual courses). The site also offers a 5 day free trial and veterans discounts, as well as payment options that allow you to pay in installments and start your education at a significantly lower price point.
- Easy to navigate student dashboard makes it easy to track your progress through each class, review the topics you need to reinforce, and to study for your class exams and state license exam.
- Interactive quizzes, worksheets, polling questions, forums, and other tools help students learn in a variety of ways for better comprehension and retention of the information.
- Free ebook download with every course allows you to easily print out course content to review in hard copy—handy for students who like to make margin notes and highlight as they study.
With experienced instructors helping develop the content and deliver engaging lessons, Van Education Center course work is high quality and effective in preparing you to take your licensing exam. The school ranks high in comparison with other online options, thanks to its knowledgeable professors, state certifications, low cost-per-education-hour, online quizzes with instant grading and feedback.
Van Education Center prides itself on making its content extremely organized and easy to access. Targeting students looking for maximum flexibility, its online coursework can be logged into from any device, at any time of the day, with visual tools that show the progress you’ve made in each course. Being able to download and print out the course content makes it easy to study if you prefer to make notes and highlight, and the extensive online database of student questions and answers make it easy to find answers to a wide range of questions other students may have encountered. Students can re-take class exams if they need to.
On weekdays, students can quickly get answers from their instructors via email or phone if they have questions about the material, and VanEd’s question and answer archive is available for students to browse at any time. When students complete a course, their certificate is available right away so they can register for their state license exam. In some states, Van Education Center will automatically report students’ course completion to the state agency that handles licensing.
Van Education Center’s technical support team is available during business hours by phone, email, and online chat to help students with any class access issues. Students have one year from the date of enrollment to complete their pre-license course, and in general VanEd recommends that students aim to spend 10 to 15 hours per week on their coursework if possible.
Van Education Center instructors are experienced, practicing real estate professionals, approved by the appropriate state agencies for each real estate course, and many have also earned their CDEI, or Certified Distance Education Instructor designation through ARELLO, a national authority on real estate laws and rules. This combination of experience and professional certification helps ensure that VanEd’s instructors are fully up-to-date with your state’s requirements and laws, and skilled at teaching in the distance-learning format to help you get fully prepared to take your exam and enter your new career as a real estate agent. Additionally, Van Education Center’s pre-license courses include quizzes that students can re-take as many times as they want. VanEd’s extra state exam prep tools are included in some pre-license course packages.
VanEd also offers separate exam prep classes. These state-specific exam prep classes cover both the state-level and national real estate topics that students can expect to see on their license exam. The prep class breaks down the exam into separate topic categories, with practice tests for each category, a large bank of practice questions so students are challenged each time they take the practice test, and result summaries for each practice exam that show students where their strong and weak areas are.
In some states, newly licensed real estate agents must complete a specific set of post-licensing classes before their first license renewal deadline. Van Education Center makes it easy for agents to get this coursework done on their own schedule, while leaving time to build their new careers. VanEd also offers continuing education courses for licensed agents in several states who have already met their post-licensing requirements. Commercial real estate continuing education, sales training, and ethics classes are also part of Van Education center’s course catalog.
Licensed agents in Colorado, Florida, Missouri, Nebraska, South Dakota, and Wyoming who are members of the National Association of Realtors can earn their Graduate Realtor Institute designation through Van Education Center. This designation can help agents attract more clients and earn more income each year.
Van Education Center has also developed a range of professional development courses that don’t offer continuing education credit but do help real estate agents and brokers to build their skills, grow their businesses, and specialize. Class topics include working with foreign clients, effective real estate blogging, identity theft and security, social media ethics for real estate agents, and more.
Van Education Center bases its courses on two guiding ideas: that students should have control over their learning process, and that online instruction should include support from real people. In keeping with those ideas, VanEd’s coursework is self-paced and includes varied materials to help keep you engaged, including interactive scenarios, computation problems, online worksheets, student forums, and a wide range of types of answers required (essay, multiple choice, etc.). Audio and video elements in the curriculum are optimized to play on whatever device students are using to take the course, and they add variety and different learning modes to the text-based content.
VanEd’s pre-license course dashboards are set up to let students move around among the class topics in any order they choose, so they’re not locked in to following the order on the class outline. Students can return to previous topics or skip ahead if they wish.
Some student reviewers felt the content could be a little more interactive, but overall, the company works to deliver content in ways that appeal to multiple learning styles and preferences. And because instructors are easily accessible during the work week–and the student Q&A archive is available at all times–students can usually get the answers to their questions quickly so they can master the material and move on.
- Very organized site structure and ability to track progress on each course you’ve purchased, thanks to your student dashboard; bookmarks track where you are and automatically log you into your last-visited spot in the curriculum. Students are free to cover the class topics in any order the want, including skipping ahead to get to new material and going back to review concepts they’ve already covered.
- Instructors are experienced real estate professionals who practice in their states, and many have also earned distance education credentials. These teachers are committed to being accessible during office hours to answer student questions by email and phone. To help students get their questions answered during off hours, they’ve compiled a library of previous student questions with answers.
- Free trials, discounts, and payment plans make it easier and more affordable to get started with your education. For example, students can opt in to a payment schedule when they enroll that breaks the total tuition into two or three smaller installments.
- Interactive elements and instant grading on quizzes make it interesting and easy to improve, while free ebooks allow you to print out and take notes as desired. The courses cover the national and state-specific topics that students must know in order to pass their state’s license exams.
- Instructors are only available during business hours; however, they are responsive to emails, and an extensive database is also open to you 24-hours a day to easily search for similar questions and answers from other students.
- No in-classroom options available; this school is 100% online only.
- Some students feel the interactive elements in the coursework could be improved.
“Online education is now the way to learn! Simple and it’s at your own convenience. VanEd is one such service that helps real estate professionals to learn – online. They have comprehensive, affordable and effective programs for people who want to learn about real estate and real estate appraisals. And unlike some other schools, their support system in the form of support staff is pretty good. Maybe, you will need one such course – soon so think of VanEd” – Active Rain
“I have used VanEd over the past 6 years for continuing education for my real estate license. It is an informative website and classes are clear and concise. Also they keep track of your previous classes for those of us who do not! I’m a fan.” – Facebook
“I just wanted to say how wonderful your online course was. I passed both portions today! I had heard most people only pass one or the other the first time. Your practice exams were exceptional. Thank You!” – VanEd.com
Students have been very happy with Van Education Center’s customer service and support. From answering students questions in regards to course guidance to helping with site problems, Van Education Center’s customer service team does not disappoint. They also offer a good payment plan for any students that may need a more flexible option in order to pay for their course work. The area that students have not been as pleased with is the level of engagement with the coursework. Some students have mentioned that the material could have better study tools and could include more real life examples.
VanVan Education Center has put an extensive amount of effort into ensuring that its content is easy to understand and navigate, starting with its website and carrying over into its student portal. Course materials are clearly laid out and progress tools allow you to easily see where you are in each lesson and in the pre-license course as a whole. With lower cost-per-hour prices, discounts for veterans, a free 5-day trial, and payment plan options, Van Education Center seems to want to make licensing accessible to as many people as possible. The school also encourages students to work at their own pace and at the times that work with their schedules. Van Education Center’s course quality is good, with many certifications ensuring that students are learning what they need to know for their states and interactive elements and quizzes are included to help vary the learning style and check for understanding. Overall, Van Education is a quality and affordable choice, one that makes it straightforward to work towards your licensing goal from the comfort of home.
Headquarters: 5345 Arapahoe Ave, Suite 7, Boulder CO 80303