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The CE Shop vs Colibri Real Estate

Determine which online real estate school is right for you between Colibri and The CE Shop

The CE Shop and Colibri are arguably the two most popular, and well-known real estate schools in the United States. As such, aspiring real estate professionals often have a difficult time choosing which company they should go with to help them get their license. In this article, we discuss the pros and cons of each company’s pre-licensing courses and exam prep materials so you can make an educated decision.

  • Price
  • Video Instruction
  • Practice Questions
  • Mobile App
  • Money Back Guarantee
  • The CE Shop SALE: 30% Off Code: TESTPREP30
    SALE: 30% Off Code: TESTPREP30
    Claim Discount
    • $$ (Budget)
    • Yes
    • Included
  • Colibri Real Estate SALE: 40% Off Code: LOVE40
    SALE: 40% Off Code: LOVE40
    Claim Discount
    • $$$ (Moderate)
    • No
    • Included

Outline: Colibri vs The CE Shop

Given that this is a lengthy, detailed comparison, we’ve included jump-to links above for your convenience.

Video Review: The CE Shop or Colibri?

In the above video, team member John covers the major differences between Colibri and The CE Shop. Read on for more info.

The CE Shop

The CE Shop

  • Four Course Options
  • Pass Guarantee
  • Four Course Options
  • Pass Guarantee
Our Score


  • star
  • star
  • star
  • star
  • star
  • Courses and exam prep materials are reasonably priced
  • Engaging content delivered in a variety of ways
  • Animated videos that hold your attention (ideal for visual learners)
  • Robust exam prep materials that help identify topics to focus on
  • Superior customer service (available 7 days per week)
  • No live class options like Colibri
  • No mobile app
The CE Shop
SALE: 30% Off Code: TESTPREP30

Why The CE Shop Is Better Than Colibri

To make this comparison helpful for you, our team is going to focus on the primary differences between these two real estate schools (as opposed to simply providing an overview of each). As such, let’s start by discussing the areas in which The CE Shop is superior to Colibri.

Engaging Content

The first reason is extremely important, and could quite possibly be a game changer, and that’s because The CE Shop’s content and instruction is much more engaging and exciting.

Unlike Colibri’s self-paced courses, which are primarily text-based, meaning you are essentially just asked to read slides and PDFs the entire time (which obviously gets a little boring), The CE Shop delivers their educational content in a variety of ways.

the ce shop practice question
Quiz question from The CE Shop

The company provides concise, text-based explanations as well as videos and interactive quizzes. The CE Shop does a great job mixing in all three formats into each lesson. You never know what’s coming within lessons when you click next, which in my opinion is great.

It really keeps the learning experience fresh and engaging as opposed to a boring click, read, click pattern.

Animated Videos

If you just want a self-paced course, then The CE Shop is clearly the more ideal choice for visual learners. The company frequently mixes in videos into their curriculum. And I’m not just talking about some 1980s home video featuring an instructor with a white background speaking in a monotone voice.

the ce shop video lesson
Example video from The CE Shop

These are unique animated cartoon videos that the company clearly invested serious time and resources into creating. They are very engaging, and do a great job illustrating key points and concepts.

Bottom line, I’d say if you’re more of a new school type of learner (maybe you don’t like reading), then The CE Shop is the way to go (AceableAgent also offers engaging content as well).

Stellar Exam Prep Guidance 

Our team also really likes the exam prep portion of the company’s courses.

For example, we like that after you complete the assessment exam after completing your pre-licensing requirements, The CE Shop provides a detailed breakdown of the topics that (1) you’ve already mastered, (2) you need additional practice with, and finally (3) where you should focus the majority of your time studying moving forward.

ce shop exam prep
The CE Shop identifies where you need additional help/practice

This makes it super easy to game plan how you can make the biggest gains in your studying with the least amount of time.

Additionally, we like that The CE Shop provides a checklist that alerts you when you are ready for your state exam based on performance and certain milestones.

Excellent Customer Service

Lastly, we’d like to point out that The CE Shop excels when it comes to customer service. This is one of the company’s main marketing points.

They have representatives that are available to help you seven days per week via email, phone or live chat. Therefore, if this is something that is important to you, maybe you’re the type of person that likes to ask 21 questions, then The CE Shop should be right up your alley.

➡️Want to learn more? Read our full CE Shop review

Colibri Real Estate

Colibri Real Estate

  • Several Course Options
  • Money Back Guarantee
  • Several Course Options
  • Money Back Guarantee
Our Score


  • star
  • star
  • star
  • star
  • star
  • Courses are slightly more affordable than The CE Shop
  • Live class options available
  • Useful feature to take notes directly within lessons
  • Live Q&A sessions available with local real estate professionals
  • Better pass guarantee than The CE Shop
  • Self-paced lessons are somewhat boring (text-based)
  • Colibri does not offer a mobile app
Colibri Real Estate
SALE: 40% Off Code: LOVE40

Why Colibri Is Better Than The CE Shop

Now that you have a better understanding of the areas in which The CE Shop excels, let’s turn the tables and discuss why you should consider using Colibri to get your real estate license.

Courses Are Slightly More Affordable

Colibri beats The CE Shop when it comes to cost. Now, to be clear, pricing between the two companies is very tight, and it does depend on which state you are attempting to get your license. However, for the most part, Colibri seems to be the more the affordable option between the two.

Also, it’s important here to analyze the net cost between Colibri and The CE Shop (not just the MSRP) because both companies regularly offers special promotions and discounts.

colibri real estate pricing
Colibri offers several different course options per state

For example, in Michigan, the standard pre-licensing and exam prep package from Colibri costs around $175 after discounts, whereas the comparable package from The CE Shop after discounts is around $210. It’s a similar story in California – Colibri’s course costs around $140 post discounts, whereas The CE Shop comes in around $150.

Yes, it does vary quite a bit, but generally speaking, you’ll likely save around $10 to $100 by going with Colibri over The CE Shop.

Live Class Options

The next win for Colibri is the fact they offer live classes, whereas The CE Shop does not (they only offer self-paced, on-demand courses).

It’s important to note that Colibri does not offer live classes for all states, but for the majority of them they do, and I must say, they are awesome (similar to Kaplan). The instructors are all local experts. They clearly know their stuff, and they do a good job of making the classes go by quickly.

colibri real estate livestream class
The live classes from Colibri are fantastic

There are typically several live class schedules you can choose from (e.g. Tuesday/Thursday, Monday/Wednesday or weekends only). That way you can pick the times that best match with your own personal schedule.

Bottom line, if you learn best via live instruction or you simply need a set class schedule to help hold yourself accountable, then Colibri is clearly the way to go.

Plus, it doesn’t hurt that Colibri’s live classes are actually quite affordable. They are only an extra $100 or so in comparison to the company’s self-paced courses so it’s not like you’ll have to break the bank if you want live instruction.

For the record, the Kaplan Real Estate School also offers live class options.

Helpful Notes Tool

This may be a minor point, but I like that Colibri makes it super easy to take notes directly within lessons. All you have to do is click the pencil icon in the top right hand corner, and you can quickly jot down whatever you want (just like with the Kaplan Real Estate courses).

Plus, the cool thing is that Colibri marks the exact chapters and pages where you take notes, and makes them accessible directly from the main dashboard (it’s very convenient). It makes it super easy to quickly review topics and concepts that you are having trouble remembering.

colibri real estate notes
Easy to take notes within Colibri lessons

Now to be fair, The CE Shop uses a bookmark feature, which is somewhat similar, but ultimately just not as robust as Colibri’s tool since you can’t add custom notes. With The CE Shop tool, you can only bookmark sections you want to review later.

➡️Also Worth Reading: Colibri vs AceableAgent

Superior Pass Guarantee 

Although both companies offer pass guarantees, if you read the fine print, Colibri actually wins in this category as well. Basically, if you purchase one of Colibri’s courses, complete all the necessary hours and exam prep, and then subsequently do not pass your state’s licensing exam within one month of completing the course, Colibri will refund your money. It’s a nice insurance policy.

Now, The CE Shop’s pass guarantee, on the other hand, unfortunately comes with a couple asterisks. For one, The CE Shop does not offer the guarantee for all states. Next, The CE Shop guarantee only covers the cost of your initial licensing exam, not the cost of the actual course, so that’s a little disappointing.

➡️Want to learn more? Read our Colibri Real Estate review

The CE Shop
SALE: 30% Off Code: TESTPREP30

Verdict: Colibri Or The CE Shop?

Alright, it’s finally time for the big reveal – should you go with The CE Shop or Colibri to help you get your real estate license?

Well, after testing the courses and exam prep materials from both companies, The CE Shop is the clear winner, though the decision does somewhat depend your budget and learning style.

For example, if money is your top priority, and you want to save every dollar you can, Colibri will likely be the cheaper option for you, although it does kind of depend on which state you’re in. Likewise, if you want live classes, whether for the instruction itself or the set schedule, Colibri is once again your answer.

However, if you are simply looking for the best all-around real estate course, and you want engaging, interactive instruction, then I’d have to point you towards The CE Shop with their animated videos, and interactive quizzes.

In fact, The CE Shop takes the top spot on our list of the best online real estate schools.

➡️READ NEXT: The CE Shop vs AceableAgent


How do Colibri and The CE Shop compare?

Lesson format is likely the biggest difference between Colibri and The CE Shop. The lessons from Colibri are primarily text-based (although they do also offer live classes), while the lessons from The CE Shop are more engaging since they mix-in animated videos, and interactive quizzes.

Which is better - Colibri or The CE Shop?

It depends on your budget and learning style. If you are a visual learner, then The CE Shop is likely the better choice given their use of animated videos. However, if you want or need live classes, then Colibri is likely the more ideal choice for you.

Is The CE Shop cheaper than Colibri?

Although it varies by state and course format, generally speaking, the real estate education packages from Colibri are slightly cheaper than those from The CE Shop.