Do you have questions about becoming a Professional Organizer? Here are my top FAQs to help you decide.

I receive many inquiries about our Professional Organizer training and education programs and questions about how to get started in the field of Professional Organizing. Maybe you have questions too. If you do, than you might be interested in reading my top frequently asked questions and answers:

Hi Anne, I wanted to introduce myself – my present circumstances – and last but not least honor the gift I was born with; a skill that just came so naturally that I didn’t see the value in it or myself (obviously). Nothing like a divorce – to motivate one to grow up, change, accept myself and transition gracefully into the next chapter. I am wondering whether or not I should take your class in person? Get your book? Write a business plan before your book? and…frankly…in this economic climate, is business good or even happening for professional organizers? Any suggestions you have for short term plans, (i.e., places to work and ‘learn the business’ while generating income and writing a biz plan) will be appreciated. Whatever wisdom you can impart will be appreciated. Sincerely, Sheila 

Hi Sheila, You sound like you are in a life transition. What a great place to be! To be honest, if I had the choice when I started, I would have attended a seminar—especially one like we offer through the Institute for Professional Organizers with the client practicum component. It really depends on the type of learner you are. Are you auditory?—then you might benefit from our self-study program. Are you visual?—then start with my book. Are you kinesthetic?—then our seminar will take you through creating your business plan, your marketing message, a process for working with client, a real client experience, and so much more. Whatever type of learner you are—I have the option. Let me know how I can help you.

Hi Anne,
I would like to inquire what is the cost of the self study program? Is there a certificate of completion? How many hours is the course (even though it is self study)? Thank you, Darci

Hello Darci, Thank you for your interest in our training programs for Professional Organizers. The cost for our self study option is very affordable. I recently spoke with someone on the phone and when I told her it is less than $400 she couldn’t believe it. She said all of NAPO’s classes combined total over $3,000, they are tele-classes and you can’t repeat the class, and it would take her years to complete all of them due to their schedule. I provide my participants a “Certified by” (40 hours—length of 3-day seminar) the Institute for Professional Organizers™ certificate upon completion of the Seminar Program. I provide my participants a Certificate of Training (8 hours—length of videos) by the Institute for Professional Organizers™ upon completion of the Self-Study Programs.

I hope you can help me. I live in Sydney, Australia and I have found your training course on the net. I would like to train to become a Professional Organiser and I have looked through your course and I am interested in completing it. However, I have a few questions to ask before I can register.
1. If I complete the self study course which includes the manual, is it a more comprehensive version of the Get Rich book for sale? Do I download the manual? The self-study program is more comprehensive than the book, plus you have the online videos. The materials are sent to you via e-mail once your payment is approved.
2. Are the self study lessons through email or sent in the post? E-mail.
3. Are there assignments to be submitted and what does a typical assignment involve? Do I complete the assignments from the information in the manual? No assignments; suggested actions.
4. The customised forms that are included in the course, can they be adapted for my business eg are electronic copies? Yes
5. The one hour phone call at the end of the course, does that include calling me in Australia? You call me 🙂 or we can Skype.
6. How do I get the audio/visual recordings? on DVD (post) or download for my resource or stream it from the web? Stream it from the web with logon access.
7. How do I find out how much I need to pay in Australian dollars? What is your preferred method? Convert US Dollars to Australian dollars and payment is made via PayPal.
Thanks for your time. I look forward to hearing from you soon.
Thanks Emma Ray

Hi Anne, I would like to know if you have a Seminar in Boston or somewhere close to here?? Thank you, Monica

Hello Monica, Thank you for your interest in our training program. Due to the client practicum, we only offer the seminar in our local area where we have access to clients we know will be a good match for our client practicum. I hope you will consider making the trip to Oregon for this invaluable and irreplaceable training experience.

Hi Anne, I am interested in taking your home study course, but want to know what else will be required after that to actually obtain a certification. 

Hi Charlotte, Thank you for contacting me. These are the eligibility requirements to become a Certified Professional Organizer by the Board of Certification for Professional Organizers. I hope that helps to answer your question.

Hi Anne, How do I get to be a CPO? Is the only way to go to the 3 days seminar? Thank you, Carrie

Hi Carrie, Thank you for contacting me about how to become a Certified Professional Organizer® (CPO®). Are you familiar with the Board of Certification for Professional Organizers? They are who “certify” Professional Organizers as a CPO®. Read their requirements page on their Web site for information about what you will need to achieve before certifying. I provide my participants a “Certified by” the Institute for Professional Organizers™certificate upon completion of the Seminar Program. I provide my participants a Certificate of Training by the Institute for Professional Organizers™ upon completion of our Self-Study Program. A CEU for the Board of Certification for Professional Organizers application must be attained through “live” or “recorded” training format so both our Seminar  and Self-Study Programs qualify for Board Certification.

Hello my name is Dawn and I was wondering if you had any kind of grants or loans to take the classes…

Hello Dawn, Thank you for your inquiry. Because we are small business and want to keep our costs the lowest the industry offers, we do not offer grants or loans for our classes. If you are serious about pursuing this profession and starting your own business, you might apply for a small business loan with your bank to cover training/education expenses, marketing, equipment, etc. that you will need to be successful.

Hi Anne, I am interested in starting a career in the field of professional organizing. I have always enjoyed organizing and take great pride in it. Looking at the BCPO, it seems I need actual collage/class credit in order to do this. Is this what this institute offers? What else can you tell me about this school in order for me to better understand what I require to become a professional organizer?

Hello Stephanie, Our training programs do provide CEU’s that may be eligible for BCPO CEU’s. For more information on what are eligible BCPO CEU’s visit their web site on this topic There are no specific requirements to become a Professional Organizer. There are specific requirements to become a Certified Professional Organizer and they are explained on the BCPO web site here and here

Hello Anne, My name is Mark and I have read with rapt interest, the information pertinent to organizing. I have had personal experience with clearing out my parents’ home after they passed away, and they had lots of stuff!! I have a couple of questions. Are most Certified Professional Organizers women? How long does it typically take to get a business off the ground after taking your classes in Portland, Oregon? I feel that being male may be in my favor but, I don’t know. I thoroughly enjoyed cleaning my home after my father passed away and was amazed at how big the apartment really was!! Any information you can provide will be greatly appreciated.

Hello Mark, Thank you for contacting me regarding your Professional Organizer career. To answer your questions: Are most Certified Professional Organizers women? Yes, they are. However the male population is growing. There was a gentleman in my training seminar  this week. How long does it typically take to get a business off the ground after taking your classes in Portland, Oregon? That depends a lot on you. There are many other steps to complete to launch your business that I teach on day one of the seminar , but you can get it off the ground in one day by registering your business with your state online, obtaining your federal tax id (again online), and opening a business checking account (also can be done online with many banks).

Hello Anne, I work full time but want to change careers. I am very interested in professional organizing. With a 80/wk work schedule and family…what is the best way to go? 

Hi Tammy, I highly recommend training. Not because I am a trainer, but because I wish I had the opportunity when I started my business. It took me months to get my business up and generating clients, because I wasn’t sure of the steps to take. Now I do know what it takes to launch and grow a professional organizer business and that is what I teach, along with techniques and skills for working with a variety of client types. That said, I think the best way to go is complete my self-study training program or attend a seminar.

Hello, I have recently retired from many years as a Flight Attendant and was looking for a second career.  I would like your direction in what is needed to become a professional residential organizer. Where do I start. I will look forward to your input. Karen

Hello Karen, Thank you for contacting me. Friends kept telling me this is the right career for me, and they were right! I left corporate America after 20+ years, I’ve been a Professional Organizer since 2003 and I absolutely love it. It is a great “second career”. What I love more is training and educating new Professional Organizers so they can have a successful business too. There are no specific qualifications for our training programs or to become a professional organizer (at this time). If you answer yes to all of these questions, you are ready to learn more about becoming a professional organizer and I would love to assist you with your training and education:
1. Do you have a sense of humor?
2. Are you non-judgmental?
3. Do you like to teach others?
4. Are you a good listener?
5. Can you visually measure space and approximate how furniture and items will fit?
6. Does the idea of cleaning out your closet excite you?
7. Does the idea of cleaning out someone else’s closet excite you?
8. Have you ever organized someone else’s stuff?
9. Do you get excited when you see a messy or disorganized space?
10. If someone doesn’t agree with your approach to organizing are you okay with that?
11. Are you self disciplined, self-motivated and a self-starter?
12. Are you good at managing finances?
13. Are you comfortable selling yourself?
14. Are you comfortable working with all types of personalities? If not, which ones are you not comfortable with?
15. Are you comfortable meeting people for the first time?

Hello, I’m interested in becoming a Professional Organizer, is there really a need for these services enough to warrant starting a business?  Thank you for your time, Sara.

Hi Sarah,  If you have been considering starting a Professional Organizer business, now is the time.

“Beginning January 1st, 2011 every single day more than 10,000 Baby Boomers will reach the age of 65. That is going to keep happening every single day for the next 19 years.”

As a result the Professional Organizer business industry is flourishing to help them downsize.   And, this is just one type of client Professional Organizers work with.

If you have questions about becoming a Professional Organizer, please post them here and I will gladly answer them.

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  1. John Matthews on January 20, 2011 at 6:19 am

    So many value-added points are given here in this post about the Professional Training Courses thanks for sharing.

  2. Janet Barclay on November 15, 2018 at 1:50 pm

    Wow, so much info in one post – great resource, Anne!

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