Demonstrate your professional experience and practice

Experienced professional route (EPR) to chartered membership recognises professional capability and previous qualifications and is a commitment to maintaining up-to-date knowledge of housing issues. It is aimed at experienced housing professionals who want to demonstrate that they have the knowledge required to lead people and manage change.

Chartered membership is a demonstration and a recognition of your housing expertise, your contribution to the housing profession, and your commitment to professional and ethical standards.

This route is an experiential programme that supports your commitment to professionalism, leading to your progression to CIH chartered member status.

Other ways of achieving chartered membership other than this route includes completing the CIH Level 5 Diploma in Housing.

What does the programme cover?

The programme will require you to reflect upon your professional capabilities and learning approaches to demonstrate your knowledge of contemporary housing issues and appropriate skills and behaviours for housing work. 

This programme covers the following themes: 

  • Contemporary housing issues
  • Knowledge, skills and behaviours
  • Reflective practice
  • Professionalism, professional standards and ethics
  • Personal and professional development.

Benefits of the experienced professional route to chartered membership

  • All study is online, there are no course attendance requirements
  • The first stage of the programme, the assignment, can be completed in four months
  • The topics covered by the programme are relevant to a range of roles within housing
  • The reflective assessment process supports personal and professional development
  • The interview provides an opportunity to engage in conversation with experienced housing professionals
  • You will achieve CIHCM and receive confirmation that you achieved CIHCM status through the EPR route.

Eligibility criteria

To apply for this route you must be a current resident of the UK and have UK housing sector experience.

You also need to meet one of the three eligibility criteria below:  

  1. You have worked in a housing organisation or the residential built environment for five years, two of which are at management level working as a senior manager or head-of-service and you have a degree level qualification in a related field to a housing career or a minimum CIH Level 4 qualification.

  2. You have worked in a housing organisation or the residential built environment for three years and you are a fully qualified member (chartered member/fellow) of another relevant professional body related to housing.

  3. You have more than five continuous years’ experience working as a senior manager or head of service in a housing organisation.

If you work in an academic setting

If you work in an academic setting you can access the programme providing you can evidence practical understanding/experience of housing through some or all of the following:

  • You might have worked in housing practice before you became an academic or are currently a board member of a housing association or a similar organisation

  • You have researched and published on an aspect of housing practice

  • Through your teaching, you disseminate information on housing practice, and how skills, competencies and behaviours to work in the housing sector can be developed and enhanced.

Please note: Canadian, Hong Kong, and international candidates must contact their local CIH office to apply. Contact information can be found here.

How will you be assessed?

You will be assessed in two stages:

  • Stage one: A 5,000 reflective written assignment that has to be complete within four months of the start of your programme
  • Stage two: A professional interview which takes place once the assignment has been successfully completed.
The assignment

The assignment is broken down into four components:

  • Three case studies which demonstrate a reflection upon your current role in the housing sector, and your ability to think reflectively, act professionally and behave ethically
  • Your approach to reflective practice
  • Your application of professional standards and professionalism, using a case study
  • An evaluation of your future development needs and future contributions to the housing profession.
The professional interview

You will be required to deliever a presentation in front of a panel of experienced housing professionals. This will be followed by a series of questions, designed to encourage discussion, relating to the programme themes.

Individuals, both inside and outside the UK, will be notified of the arrangements for the interview after successful completion of the assignment. Successful completion of both the assignment and professional interview will confirm that you have achieved the standards for chartered membership.

Further information

You are required to demonstrate and present a case on how your professional experience and practice shows that they meet the requirements of chartered membership, which are to:

  • Maximise the positive impact of your work with individuals and communities
  • Deliver services that are designed to maximise the positive impact on customers
  • Work with partners to improve effectiveness
  • Contribute to the profession, sharing experience and supporting innovation
  • Communicate effectively – taking care to select the right style and method for the audience
  • Apply the professional standards framework to the daily role, embracing a reflective practice to contribute to the professionalism of the organisation and the wider sector
  • Have an ethical approach to your work - using the CIH ethical framework when faced with dilemmas
  • Ensure that you have the right skills and knowledge for the job – scanning the horizon to predict future challenges and preparing effectively
  • Embrace non-discriminatory practice and challenge behaviour which works against equality and diversity principles of good practice, reflecting on steps taken and improvements needed for equality, diversity and inclusion
  • Support initiatives for delivering services which are socially responsible
  • Promote and engage with policies and processes which conserve resources and support sustainable development.

It should also demonstrate how your professional experience and practice shows:

  • Your contribution to the housing profession
  • The strategic direction of your organisation and how it meets government housing policy
  • Your experience in managing resources (people and/or teams)
  • A reflection on your professional experience and the importance of professionalism and professional standards
  • Your practice of continuing professional development, working to the code of conduct, code of ethics and the CIH professional standards
  • How you continue to influence policy and practice agendas locally, regionally and nationally.

What support will I receive?

Although the route is based on self-study, as well as having access to online learning materials designed to support the specific themes of the programme, study skills and guidance on how to complete the assignment, you will also be allocated a tutor who will advise on academic requirements of the programme and who will assess your assignment.

You will be advised to secure a mentor from housing practice who can offer support, guidance and advice from a professional practice perspective.

Cohort dates

The next cohort dates for the experienced professional route:

Application closing date

Start date

2 September 2024

16 September 2024

25 November 2024

9 December 2024

10 March 2025

24 March 2025

Additional information

Please note, from 1 April 2024 a registration fee of £1430 for UK-based candidates applies. Candidates outside the UK will be advised separately of the fee.

Terms and conditions

Hear from our members
Michael Braithwaite, CEO, Blue Door

Watch our video from Michael Braithwaite, CEO at Blue Door, as he talks about his experience with the CIH's experienced professional route (EPR) to Chartered membership CIHCM.

Jameel Malik, Director Of Operations, Habinteg Housing Association

"The learning I undertook as part of the experienced professional route has enabled me to identify areas for improvement in my day-to-day role and has also fine-tuned the tools I have available to put successful change management into place."


Anthony Hearn
Anthony Hearn CIHCM

"Taking the executive route to chartered status enabled me to take time to reflect on my own career, professional experience and practice, and set this against the clear professional standards and ethical decision-making frameworks.

"I was naturally relieved to realise that my experiences, skills and behaviours already aligned with these frameworks, but of course there is always room for development. To this end, I had some really helpful conversations with peers and a mentor and spend a lot of time reflecting on my practice and approach.

"This allowed me to more consistently articulate those experiences against the frameworks and have given useful tools for developing wider professional practice across my organisations.

"It has been a really interesting (as well as challenging) opportunity to pause and evaluate my personal contribution to delivering professional standards."

Chris Forrester

Chris Forrester

"The Experienced Professional Route programme to chartered status gave me time to reflect on my decade in the sector. It was great to reflect on my career to date and formalise my learning over that time.
The programme also allowed me to see gaps in my learning and put together an action plan on how to build up on these areas. I was also encouraged to spend some time thinking about my future career plans.
Overall, it was a challenging but very enjoyable process and I am very proud to have passed and to have been awarded chartered status."

Farida Aslam

The Experienced Professional Route offered me an independent, online virtual learning experience that I could manage around my work and home-life commitments. It focused on housing theory and context, professionalism and conduct, and reflective practice. As part of the program, I developed a practice portfolio to capture the breadth of my work, critically examining it through the knowledge gained in the course. Additionally, I created a personal development plan to help me grow and develop for future roles.

Undertaking the Experienced Professional Route was both challenging and highly rewarding. This route is ideal for anyone working in a senior role without a housing-related qualification.

Charlotte Johnson – Platform Housing Group

Becoming a chartered member of the Chartered Institute of Housing has been a transformative journey. It's not just a title; it's a symbol of dedication, expertise, and professionalism in the field of housing. The rigorous process has enriched my knowledge, expanded my network, and elevated my career to new heights. As a chartered member, I aim to deepen my expertise, expand my professional network, and contribute meaningfully to addressing housing challenges. Being recognised as a chartered member signifies my dedication to upholding the highest standards of professionalism and ethics in the industry.

Professional standards
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Chartered membership
You achieve chartered status once you complete the course and retain an active membership.

Discuss this route to chartered membership with a member of the team