The Distressed Property Institute, LLC

Our Mission

Our mission is to help as many homeowners as possible, by training as many real estate professionals as possible. Focusing on homeowner needs, CDPEs across the country are helping to solve the foreclosure crisis one homeowner at a time.

Our Beginnings

With their personal experience helping hundreds of struggling homeowners, industry veterans Alex and Cadey Charfen founded the Distressed Property Institute in January 2008 to combat the escalating trend of foreclosures occurring across the United States. They turned their extensive knowledge of the distressed property market into the Certified Distressed Property Expert® designation, which is taught through the CDPE Online Distance Learning Course or the two-day CDPE Live! Event educating real estate professionals on how to help homeowners facing financial hardships.

Homeowners in danger of foreclosure represent a challenging yet growing sector of the market that real estate professionals must adapt to handle. Built from industry and personal experience, the Institute believes that the first step toward success is to discover and identify with a homeowner's needs. The Institute trains its students to find the best option to address these needs; understanding that what is best for the homeowner is always the best solution.

Expanding from, yet true to these core ideals, the Institute has created the real estate industry's fastest growing independent designation: the CDPE. Today, Alex and his team of expert trainers travel the country training thousands of professionals how to help distressed sellers, deal with absentee owners, perform short sales, and fully address homeowner needs in this chaotic real estate market. These professionals then become CDPE members, with access to monthly calls, marketing materials, the CDPE Designation, and the CDPE Community Forum to share referrals and best practices.

The Distressed Property Institute was founded in Boca Raton, Florida, and is now based in Austin, Texas.

The CDPE Designation

The CDPE designation is the fastest-growing designation in real estate industry history, adding more than 1,200 members each month. The CDPE shows clients, banks, lenders and peers that a real estate professional has undergone extensive training in the process and tools necessary to handle distressed properties and, when necessary, successfully close short sales.

The CDPE is endorsed by national real estate organizations, including RE/MAX International and Keller Williams Realty, as well as several of the industry's most prominent icons:

- Howard Brinton, Founder of STAR POWER Systems
- Brian Buffini, Founder of Buffini & Company
- Allen Chiang, Chairman of the Asian Real Estate Association of America (AREAA)
- Tino Diaz, Chairman & President of the National Association of Hispanic Real Estate Professionals (NAHREP)
- Dave Jenks, Chief Visionary Officer of Free Enterprise Warriors
- Steve de Laveaga, Senior Vice President of Fidelity National Title
- Dave Liniger, Chairman & Co-founder of RE/MAX International
- Joe Stumpf, Founder & National Spokesperson of By Referral Only

Our Training

The CDPE Online Distance Learning and CDPE Live! two-day classes are extensive training sessions on how to handle distressed properties by first focusing on homeowner needs. There is a particular emphasis on short sales, which can be a vital tool for helping homeowners avoid foreclosure. In a short sale, the lender agrees to accept the sale price of a house as a settlement of the mortgage, even if it is less than what is owed. In some instances, a short sale can keep families from financial ruin.

Unlike other industry training products, the CDPE also focuses on non-sale options to help families stay in their homes. This idea has helped establish the CDPE as the premier training for real estate professionals in today's market.

Nationally, due to a lack of knowledge specific to short sale transactions, it is estimated that only one in 10 short sales close. Agents with the CDPE designation close as much as eight out of 10 short sales due to their tremendous training and expertise gained from the Institute's extensive, relevant and comprehensive courses.

Our Future

The importance of the CDPE in today's market is undeniable, but the training, tools and services provided by the Institute, and the CDPE designation, will continue to remain relevant to the real estate industry. Traditionally, even in the best of markets, 1 to 3 percent of all home sales are distressed properties. When the tide of foreclosures across the United States begins to ebb, there will still be a need for real estate professionals with the competency to handle distressed properties.

Additionally, the national network of CDPEs connected by the CDPE Member Forums facilitates the sharing of best practices, referrals and vital information, and supports growth among real estate professionals nationwide.

CDPE - Certified Distressed Property Expert |