Those wishing to enter the field of Corporate Suite Rentals where a management company arranges leases for homes and apartments on a short-term basis can get certification if they meet certain requirements. The candidate must hold a high school diploma or equivalent; have a minimum of two years experience in the corporate housing industry or related industry such as real estate, hotels, property management, or relocation. They must also read, sign, and return the CHPA Code of Ethics Statement. The Association provides reference material to assist the candidate to prepare for and pass the examination.
Although the exam must be written in person, the scheduling is done online and the applicant can select from any one of 300 testing locales. If a candidate works renting corporate suites in Toronto Canada for instance, and is planning to write the exam while on vacation in San Diego or Miami, he or she simply applies for the most convenient CASTLE testing center to attend.
The CHPA's exams are administered by CASTLE Worldwide, Inc. to provide the testing centers and the computer-based testing administration. Results are provided immediately after the exam. The CCHP certification is good for a period of three years. The study guide and reference articles give the candidate sufficient information to combine with his or her experience ensuring an ability to score well on the test, which is divided into the three areas of expertise: operations (37%), financial management (26%), and marketing and sales (37%). Members of CHPA pay an exam fee of 0 and non-members are charged 0. They select the geographical area of their choice and date of exam; candidates can re-schedule through CASTLE's online test scheduling system within five days and must pay an additional fee. Those who fail the examination can take it again for 0.
Operations knowledge deals with business planning, strategy, projection, and ensuring the overall health of the business by dealing with vendors, communities, and associations in an effective non-confrontational fashion. Those operators who fail in practicing reasonable ethics such as making demands outside the scope of a contractual agreement or booking risk losing credibility. Managing guest services includes ensuring that the intent to vacate is given according to the leasing arrangement.
The customers who use corporate lodging have special needs and a high budget so they must be catered to and treated as likely return business. Unlike real estate and normal property management the tenants require upscale facilities for a short time while on business. Some units are needed for only several weeks, but the majority of them book the suites for an average of eighty days.
Like any business, the operator must have skills in financial management, marketing, and sales. Budgets and financial reports such as profit and loss statements and balance sheets must be prepared. Generating business requires skill in multimedia advertising to prevent excess vacancies among the suites listed. A successful advertising campaign includes identifying the effective media and allocating budget to purchase print ad space, internet visibility, or radio and television airtime. Writing competent ad copy is a key skill needed for profitability, for without a company message that reaches far and wide the financial profit projections will not materialize.