On-line Courses – Housekeeping

Housekeeper Correspondence Course – (adapted from the butler courses)


  • An affordable way to learn or train
  • Keep earning income while taking the course
  • Train from the comfort of your own home
  • Train on a schedule that suits you
  • Increase your skills and value to current and future employers
  • Gain the ability to bring greater satisfaction to those you service and thus to yourself
  • Increase the depth of private service and housekeeping knowledge / skills with formal training that you have missed

This correspondence course includes checklists detailing the reading and practical assignments, as well as projects to be done. Progress for students in the Western Hemisphere is supervised by Mrs. Monica Ferry. Students in the Eastern Hemisphere and Spanish-speaking countries are supervised by Mr. Amer Vargas. All students have an open line via e-mail to their instructors for questions, and to receive guidance on professional matters.

The Housekeeper course takes about about 200 hours (about 5 weeks full-time, longer on a part-time schedule) to complete on an intense part-time schedule and costs US $1000. Four books and two DVDs must be purchased for this course (similarly via Amazon) for a total cost of about $250 plus shipping. This course must be paid in full before starting; there are no installment payments.

All graduates receive Certificates of Completion from the Institute upon successful completion of the course.

Students within the US may pay with credit card, PayPal or via Western Union. Visit the I.I.M.B. Shop to purchase your course of choice using a credit card or PayPal. Contact the Institute for any assistance you may need.

Students outside of the US may pay with credit card, PayPal or a service like Wise.com. Visit the I.I.M.B. Shop. If you live outside of the United States and cannot use PayPal or a credit card to make international payments, please contact the Institute to be guided through bankwire or other money transfer procedures.

The Institute offers discounted rates for students living in regions with wage scales that might put paying for the course beyond their reach as individuals. Contact the Institute to find out if you qualify. We will ask you to provide evidence to show you qualify for a discount based on your income.

Training Path Choices

Training at the front end of any career, and ongoing until the day we retire, at least, is a given for butlers and household or estate(s) managers today. In the old days, the only training route was on-the-job training and apprenticeship that was hands-on heavy, light on theory, and limited in scope. The results were narrowly focused manual skills and not much in the way of managerial expertise.

Today, we have two additional avenues: bricks-and-mortar butler schools providing anything from 2-8 weeks of training with varying degrees of effectiveness and for prices ranging from a couple of thousand to $15,000. The advantages include working with peers, face-to-face tutorials, and field trips, and often, preferential placement efforts upon graduation. 

The other avenue, perhaps more in tune with the digital world in which we live, is online courses. Their weaknesses are the very strengths of the bricks-and-mortar schools; whereas the strengths of online courses include a significantly lower fee (typically $2,000 – $3,000 for study hours on a par with an eight-week residential course); zero costs for travel, room and board; and for those currently in the work force, neither loss of income for the trainee nor interruption of service for the employer during the training. Additionally, because more subjects are covered, the training tends to be deeper, or can certainly be made far deeper by the student taking ancillary courses locally on such as wines, cigars, flower arranging, advanced driving, firearm and security, etc.

An independent survey was conducted recently into preferred training methods, which is well worth reviewing. Key points established were:

Ø  Only about 50% of people feel they have the learning opportunities they need in their work;

Ø  People like to learn at home more than anywhere else;

Ø  If they have a choice between learning on computers, tablets, mobile phones or reading a printed document, they pick a computer. Mobile phones came last;

Ø  The preferred duration for learning is 16-30 minutes, by a very large margin;

Ø  Learning opportunities are critical to job satisfaction.

Furthermore, according to the survey results, people most desire self-paced learning and to put information into practice immediately. Anyone who has done any of the Institute’s online courses knows that’s exactly the way their Institute training was conducted. The courses were designed and written by the Chairman, who has worked for decades as an educator, specializing in cutting-edge education methods, as well as by Professor Ratliff, likewise an educator for decades. Where an employer is paying for the training (as opposed to self funding), a visit to the estate by Institute personnel at the conclusion of the training can ensure full application of the materials and certainty on the part of the trainee, which are, after all, the ultimate purposes of any training.

Bricks-and-mortar schools and online courses appeal to different groups with different needs, goals, and barriers, so one cannot say that one is better than the other: only that it is a blessing for the profession that we have choices. Even the old hands-on training on the job is still available in a few stately homes and such as Buckingham Palace for those who want authentic and traditional training. Certainly in combination with the other two forms of training, they are valuable experience and CV/resume builders.


Ocean House, Rhode Island
Ocean House, Rhode Island

“This is to notify you that I have received my certificate via mail yesterday.
To say I am happy is  an understatement. I am filled with joy and most proud to have been able to complete the process against all odds.
I sincerely  want to thank Ms. Monica Ferry for refusing to let me stop and for not given up on me in the face of my many shortcomings due to diverse challenges I encountered.
Thank you, Mr. Vargas for seeing me through the program. I appreciate your keen eye to detail, you made me more focused.
I also want to thank Mr. Frank Mitchell; to my mind he is the most patient and wonderful tutor who saw me through the dark years of my studies which ordinarily would have been a study for just a few months. I am blessed to have had him teach me the excellent art of service.
Above all,  my thanks to Professor Steven Ferry who supervised my every course work and accessed me worthy to bear the seal as a certified Bulter from his prestigious institute. I am hopeful I will have more to learn from the institute in terms of further studies.
Thank you all, God bless you all.”

“I am writing to express my gratitude for your utmost professional guidance and for the fantastic materials that you have created in the Correspondence Course.”

“From the moment I opened the Butlers & Household Managers book there was no way back for me. At that stage, I did not have any service background whatsoever, and it was a magical experience to discover my interest in the content of the book, enough even to prompt me to learn English. Beginning then on the course, I was amazed at the thoroughness of the materials—I understand the importance of every single Module.”

“No other butler school concentrates as much on the mindset of the butler, the understanding of which is paramount. I simply cannot think of a better idea than structuring the course on the butler mentality fundamentals. Everything else simply flows naturally from this understanding, which makes the studying process really enjoyable! The skills and knowledge I have gained are helping me in everyday life.”

“Some assignments were really challenging, but it was a pleasure to accept these challenges and broaden my capabilities in these fields.”

“I honestly think that you are the best teacher that I have ever had (!), and your personal approach and expertise is what makes the studying process interesting. Without doubt, your personal example will serve as a reference point throughout my career and beyond!”

“The value of what you give to people like me cannot be assessed with money. To summarize my experience with the Private Service Butler and Household Manager course, I feel that it can offer as much for beginners as it does to people with work experience in the service industry. Absolutely sterling!”

“The correspondence course gave me the entire scope of the duties and responsibilities of the multi-skilled butler in meeting the differing needs of employers around the world.
I now understand the butler’s frame of mind and his intention to achieve remarkable service. My great gratitude to my teacher for his guidance.”

“I want to thank the Institute for the excellent training they provided. I am very proud to now be one more butler with a certificate from this reputed training center, able to offer my services in hospitality venues as well as private estates.”

The following comments from a university professor as he progresses through the course:

“I hope all the assignments in the course are this much fun.”

 “This is a wonderful module, very thought provoking.”

“I have most enjoyed Module 1.  I didn’t expect to enjoy the videoed programs quite so much as I actually do; and pondering the questions after gives me extra insight it the videos themselves.  Great job on Module 1!”

“I look forward to the new assignments.  This set was thought-provoking, instructive, and fun.”

“Thank you for your prompt and very kind review.”

“I can’t thank you too many times, nor overstate my gratitude, for your help through this material.”

“This whole set of modules from section five of the course has been most instructive and great fun.  As always, should you require changes, I shall be happy to try again.  I have come to enjoy and trust your comments on my work.  The times I have needed to do things again, I have been better off for it.”

“Thank you for your very prompt and very helpful reply, as always. I have observed in life that there are few truly dependable people.  You are proving  to be one of them.”