1st Choice Real Estate School
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About The Client

1st Choice Real Estate School is a Missouri-approved real estate education provider, offering online and classroom courses to both real estate brokers and real estate sales professionals. Courses are written and audited by both seasoned industry licensee professionals as well as real estate attorneys. Being a broker favorite and an industry leader in real estate education, 1st Choice is committed to delivering an overall great online learning experience by ensuring students can find and order courses easily while still fitting classes into their busy lives. 

We spoke with the manager of 1st Choice Real Estate School, Karen Baynes, to learn more about 1st Choice’s challenges with their prior LMS as well as their experience of migrating to the Academy Of Mine platform.

The Challenge

Following the acquisition of their prior LMS vendor by a larger company, 1st Choice began to feel the effects of having their LMS hosted and managed by a large organization:

  • Their fees were raised. Charging on a per-student-per-year basis, their prior LMS company instituted a pricing system that required 1st Choice to estimate on an annual basis the number of students they expected to enroll in courses.
    • Affecting 1st Choice’s fiscal bottom line, this new pricing caused two challenges:
      • If 1st Choice overestimated student enrollment they lost money
      • If student student enrollment was underestimated, 1st Choice would be charged a higher price point per additional student, costing the company even more money


  • They lost money due to their LMS provider’s system errors. Due to an internal glitch caused by software updates, hundreds of students were given free access to expired courses. This error on the part of their LMS provider caused substantial revenue loss for 1st Choice.


  • Valuable time was wasted on manual tasks due to platform limitations. With their old LMS not meeting the functionality needed to run their courses per their specific requirements, 1st Choice was forced to compensate by spending valuable time completing manual tasks to enable the existing LMS platform to work within the requirements of their course design. 1st Choice was adapting to the constraints of their LMS, instead of their LMS adapting to their specific needs. 

With all of these factors taken into account, 1st Choice Real Estate School made the decision to start searching for a platform that could address these challenges while also providing them with an improved solution tailored to their specific needs.

“Everyone has been great!  Tech support responds to all our requests in a timely manner and is able to customize our LMS to fit our unique and specific needs.”

The Solution

After researching a number of platforms, 1st Choice contacted Academy Of Mine. Working with their Academy Of Mine Product Manager and Customer Success Manager, 1st Choice identified challenges they had experienced in their prior LMS and also mapped out their specific pains points and determined the exact specs that needed to be met in order to deliver the ideal LMS solution for their students. 

1st Choice identified several factors that were important to them when setting up a custom built LMS solution: 

  • Being a small business, the pricing structure of any LMS they used needed to be predictable and fit within their budget.
  • Their LMS solution needed to be student-focused and have an intuitive, user-friendly interface.
  • They alo needed the following customizations available:
    • Custom built student registration page to display their industry credentials
    • Multiple customized course certificates
    • Customized, exportable reporting
    • Various customized rules for students progressing through LMS courses
    • Website development and customizations

With all this determined, 1st Choice Real Estate School was given a free trial period to test drive the Academy Of Mine LMS platform to see if it fit their business needs.

“Price was great for small businesses, they fulfilled all our LMS requirements, staff answered all our questions up front!”

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The Results

Using the criteria mentioned above, Academy of Mine then developed a customized LMS platform for 1st Choice Real Estate School with a Fully Managed service plan. The new LMS system delivered the following results for 1st Choice: 

  • Money saved. As opposed to the variable pricing they experienced with their prior LMS. 1st Choice was able to cut their LMS costs by over 50% by taking advantage of Academy Of Mine’s inclusive, flat fee pricing which allowed them to incorporate predictable costs into their company’s budget instead of being hit with frustrating unexpected fees. 
  • Time and energy saved.  With the difficulties faced with their prior LMS, which included many bugs experienced by students in the LMS interface which in turn required manual fixes to be done by the client themselves, 1st Choice’s new LMS with Academy Of Mine provides an optimized and seamless LMS experience for both instructors and students.
  • Flexibility: the LMS adapts to you, you don’t adapt to the LMS. Prior to their LMS with Academy Of Mine, 1st Choice’s components and structure of their courses were limited to the predefined capability of the LMS they were utilizing, putting limitations on the courses they were able to offer to their students. Since changing platforms, 1st Choice’s new LMS has been customized to their specific needs and is also adaptable as the needs of their course offerings change as their business evolves.

1st Choice Real Estate School LMS homepage.
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1st Choice Real Estate School eLearning platform homepage.


Following 1st Choice Real Estate School’s completed migration to their new eLearning platform, Karen had this to say about her results:

“I just wanted to send you both a quick note letting you know your development team is awesome! They are responding quickly to all our requests and customizing our LMS to fit our specific needs! We have some very unique requests and they never hesitate to get it done for us! I wish we found you guys years ago! I can’t wait to start transferring our students over to AOM! I think they will love it because it’s so much more user friendly and easier to navigate. I just wanted to say thank you!”

Karen Baynes

Manager, 1st Choice Real Estate School

We are thrilled that Karen is happy with her LMS migration and that 1st Choice Real Estate School now has its own custom built LMS platform.

Have more questions about customizing your own LMS platform? We have helped a variety of clients who needed their LMS custom built to their individual needs. If you have any questions or would like to know your LMS customization options please see our Contact Page or email us at info@academyofmine.com.