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By: Manny Mangat
May 19, 2021
In the world of technology, new things are discovered every day. The latest discoveries do not only save time but also increase productivity. They have taken an essential part in our day-to-day lives, making our lives easier.
One of the examples is property management. Gone are days when owners and tenants had to keep records on excel sheets and forms.
If you are a property manager and you deal with property leasing, it is crucial to know about the real estate property management software that is used to streamline the operations into a single platform.
The property management software creates a centralized platform for all the functions including property management, accounting, and financial activities.
The market value of property management software was recorded at $1.58 billion in 2019, and is expected to grow 5.27% YoY from 2020 to 2027.
Significant growth in the real estate market is the key factor for the popularity of property management software systems.
These software systems allow property managers to automate the financial and administrative operations, besides the front-desk operations. The software is a platform for realtors to reduce human errors and delegate tasks to staff members in an effective manner.
Some other features of property management software include package deliveries, broadcast announcements, tenant search and screening, tenant credit scoring, and leasing.
Property Management is the set of operational activities that oversee the real estate and physical property. Properties need to be occupied by individuals for the real estate business to flourish.
The end-to-end system of allocating properties to tenants, finding the right match between tenants and needed properties, finalizing the contract, and serving the tenants once they move in is an entire cycle of operations known as property management.
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Now let us go through some standard operating procedures that are essential in managing properties. Both, large and small scale. The procedures can be divided into categories for property managers and tenants.
Owners must conduct tenant visits to the properties and then have a background screening and credit scoring check to avoid misuse of the property. Contract signing, renewals, and termination also duties related to the allocation of tenants to the property.
Property managers also need to take care of the contract work when leasing out a property to tenants.
Besides signing of new contracts, they have to ensure that renewal of contrcts is done on time. In case, difference arise between the owner and tenant, the property manager have to take necessary steps to terminate the contract.
The property managers must ensure that the maintenance requirements of the property are taken care of.
The software system can be used for sending out requests for maintenance and other relevant communication between the tenant and the property manager.
For an analytical review of the business performance, property management software can assist in extracting and generating performance reports.
They have to deal with the rent collection from the tenants that can also be done using the software and automatically recorded into the system.
The landlords should advertise their vacant property to attract the tenants. The more the advertisement, the better the chances to find a tenant. Property managers can use software applications to advertise about vacant properties.
Using the application, the managers can post the ad on multiple website with a single click.
Individuals living in any area will receive packages; therefore, the property manager has to manage the mailroom where packages will be delivered for residents of that property.
The packages need to be collected by concerned individuals from the mailing room. The managers to need ensure at all times that the mailing room is not overcrowded by delivering the packages on time.
This is the time when property management applications come into play and make the process easy for the managers.
In multi-family properties, the property managers often need to make announcements and update the tenants. The announcements could be related to security, maintenance, power shut down, or changes in the rent.
The managers also send in contract renewal reminders and rent reminders so the tenants can pay on time.
The software applications lets property managers do just that. They can send out messages to all the residents to make announcement.
They can also broadcast a message in large buildings in case of emergency.
It involves functions related to the laws and regulations in the country to avoid any unfavorable circumstances.
These laws are used to ensure timely collection of rent, vacating the property when the lease is terminated, and terminating the lease if necessary.
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The property management software applications allow the interested parties to search for properties on the app in the desired location. Using the app, they can also communicate with the property manager to acquire about the maintenance charges.
In addition, the property manager can upload the pictures of the property showing so the tenants can see the condition of the property before moving in.
Property management software serves as a platform for the tenants through which they can send maintenance requests to the property manager.
The platform is also used for making meeting requests in multi-family housing and condos.
The tenants need a platform where they can make rental fee submissions. It could be a bank account or anapplication that is used more commonly. The property management applications allow the users to make rental payments conveniently, eliminating the need for cash payments or payments through bank transfers.
The responsibilities of property managers vary but they are mainly designed to deal with owner-related responsibilities and those of the tenants. Property managers take care of all activities related to the renting of properties.
While meeting owner requirements, the managers have to ensure that the tenants receive whatever has been agreed upon in the contract. They also deal with the issues that may come up during the duration of the tenancy.
Property management software have also made their way to the real estate industry. With the advent of these property management software, the real estate industry has centralized its operations.
Instead of keeping records on various tools, the manager can now have all the records centralized onto a single platform.
These property management software make it convenient for potential tenants to find a property as they can carry out a web–based search. Similarly, the property manager can conveniently reach out to tenants that are registered on these software apps.
The property management software allow the property manager to take care of the rental procedures and ensure the rent that has been set is competitive according to the market.
Communication between the owner, tenant, and the manager can be conducted on the same platform too.
Some of these software apps are paid products while some are available free of charge for the users.
Let us check out this year's best property management software that are being used for property management and compare their features. Some of these software s are based on the cloud, while some are web-based.
These applications are tailored for individual owners that are lending property for holiday rentals, like vacation houses.
The best property management software can be recognized by its ease of use, the number of features it streamlines into a single platform, and cost-effectiveness. Let’s have a look at some of them!
AppFolio is one of the one of the best property management software in the year 2021. It is cloud-based and multi-purpose, thus it can be used for dorms, apartments, single families, as well as for commercial use.
The application provides tools for financial and accounting activities of rental procedures. Moreover, there are tools available to cover the marketing and advertising of the vacant property.
AppFolio allows the users to post property ads on multiple websites and platforms with a single click, saving the time of users. It can also assist in rent collection through the same platform.
Additional features of this rental property management software are portfolio administration, document management, and localization using multiple languages and currencies.
Furthermore, it has an easy-to-read dashboard that presents the major Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) allowing the user to make real-time decisions.
With the use of machine visioning and artificial intelligence, it has automated the delivery of packages and the mailroom. The property managers can inform recipients with a single click. The managers can also communicate with the delivery companies using the same application.
Specially designed features for the recipients allow them to request to forward the mail, destroy it or let them hold the package until it is convenient to be picked up.
Recipient and sender info can be extracted from the package through barcode scanning or simply scanning the text that is written on it, and the application automatically finds the corresponding recipient for it.
Another very commonly used cloud-based application of 2021 is Buildium, that is designed for small businesses. It is used for community association management to inform homeowners associations and condominium about the latest updates and send out reminders about the rent.
The tenants can use the same portal for sending out requests for maintenance as well as schedule meetings. The tool can also be used to maintain a database of residents of the home association or condominium for that matter.
Buildium has a new feature that allows property owners to review analytics and have a better understanding of their business. The app covers the operations including tenant screening and selection, company financials, online payments.
Also, the users can conduct maintenance services, property inspections, and conduct announcements related to building activities. All these activities can be done remotely as it is a cloud-based app.
Yardi Voyager is an online property management software and is popular among property managers for providing online services through smartphones and tablets. The property managers can conduct end-to-end services using Yardi Voyager.
It is a centralized system that streamlines all the activities that the property manager needs to conduct. It comes with an easy-to-use dashboard. A large number of users for large properties allows it to generate big data that is further utilized to obtain analytical reports about the business.
As the app has multipurpose features, it can be used by large properties such as shopping malls and airports.
Due to the detailed features, this commercial real estate property management software requires the users to take training before starting to use the application.
Download: Android and iOS Pricing: The price range varies depending on the type of residential area. It is $1 per unit for residential property, $2 per unit for commercial property, and $3 for affordable housing. For condominiums and associations, the price is $0.50, lower than the rest of the options.
Yardi Breeze is a simpler version of Yardi Voyager designed for small residential areas. Though it has all the features of Yardi Voyager, the users do not need training.
The residential property management software is used to carry out activities related to finance, accounting, leasing, and marketing.
This residential property management software is simpler and easier to use as compared to Yard Voyager.
Owners of small and midsized businesses prefer using this over the more complex version, Yardi Voyager, which is used for commercial properties.
ResMan is a widely used commercial property management software as it streamlines numerous functions of a real estate manager into a single platform. As commercial markets have a large number of properties to be handled, ResMan is the answer to this complex set of operations.
The app has a user-friendly interface and a communication feature that allows the easy exchange of messages among the staff members. Users can also create reports easily and in less time as they can conveniently find the required data from the system.
The main features of this real estate software are similar to that of other software that includes accounting, advertising, leasing, and operations.
ResMan also allows real estate managers to acquire customer satisfaction through an effective performance of property maintenance.
Innago is powerful property management software for individual landlords who handle their property. It is easy and simple to use for property owners who don’t have extensive teams working under them. This rental property management can be downloaded free of cost.
Innago avoids unnecessary features to keep it simple for its users, thus saving them time. Also, the simple features make it cost-effective too. Users can easily find the features that why will need to handle their rental business.
It is used for residential properties, student housing, and commercial properties. The automated communication feature allows the user to set reminders to the tenants. The tenants are automatically charged with a late fee in case they do not pay the rent on time.
Moreover, this rental property management software lets the user create a customized application with specific questions for the tenants.
The mobile option has made it convenient for users to sign the agreements from their smartphones or tablets making the one of the best online property management software.
Tenant Cloud is cloud-based and it is a free rental property management software. It is designed for both tenants and landlords so they can advertise and search for the required property. The application has separate portal for both, tenants and the landlords with relative features and pricing.
The prominent features of this software include leasing, operations and accounting. The users can pay their rent online, and upload pictures before moving and before leaving the property.
Entrata Core is designed specifically for apartment property management software for rentals and provides features such as property management, marketing, and leasing.
Besides, it allows residents to use the software for paying rents, utility bills, get insurance, and track packages too.
The management feature of this cloud-based software allows the user to automate the renewal of contracts and to post to ledgers. The leasing section lets the user get online signatures and conduct tenant screening too.
It provides a variety of tools for the users including, mobile application, payments, and resident management. The best feature of this software is that it allows property managers to choose the technology that best suits their needs, which is done through the use of third-party integrations.
Download: Android and iOS Pricing: Not available
Realpage is a web-based platform for rentals of a vacation house, multifamily, commercial, and single-family housing industries. It is an end-to-end solution for streamlining accounting activities, management of property and rental procedures. It is a relatively simple property management software.
This software allows the users to store data electronically, allows them to retrieve reports quickly when needed, thus saving time and improving efficiency.
This is reportedly a one-stop solution for all the property needs, making it a good choice for multifamily and single-family property management software.
Download: Not available Pricing: The starting rate is $30/month
Hemlane is a real estate property management software that promises to advertise your property ads on the top 30 rental websites.
With a single click, the software can display your property on multiple websites, thus increasing the odds. Interested parties can reach out to the landlord through the same ad and the property manager will receive the message on the software.
Hemlane can assist the property managers to conduct an extensive background check and credit check of the tenants. The users can also add local agents to the system, who can then show the property to interested parties.
Download: Not available Pricing: Not Available
Skyline is yet another software that provides landlords with accounting services, reporting, leasing, and marketing of vacant properties.It is targeted towards multi-family residential areas and commercial properties too.
Skyline’s administrative and accounting feature is outstanding as they have a strong team in place.
It provides the users with exceptional features for accounting and financial purposes making it the best property management accounting software. It also helps in record keeping of bills and budgets.
Download: No app available Pricing: Not Available
Cozy is another property management software for landlords with small piece of property. It has the essential features for property rentals, yet it has been simplified to make it easy for individuals.
The screening and background check is purchased and shared by the applicant; thus, the property owner does not have to pay for the charges.
The software provides educational tools that the users can access to become better property owners using the app. It allows the user to advertise their property and find the right tenants by screening and comparing the applicants side by side.
The user can conduct tenant screening and advertising using this app however, the app does not allow accounting and finance features like many other applications.
Download: Android & iOS Pricing: Not available
Building link is a set of integrated software and hardware solutions for buildings to run the operations smoothly. This software has some unique features that make it one of the leading solutions in the industry.
Building Link's communications feature allows the management to sends messages to the residents to inform them about any packages they have received.
Moreover, the broadcast feature allows managers to make announcements in the building and lets an easy flow of communication.
The app also has integration with Amazon’s Alexa, allowing the residents to find building-related information using their voice.
The Aware sensors by BuildingLink allow staff and residents easy access to information and services, thus reducing cost and time.
Download: Android and iOS Pricing: The starting price is $125 per month for the console cloud
Console Cloud is a powerful tool for the real estate industry that has multiple integrations on a single platform, thus it can meet the different needs of property managers and residents.
It has a user-friendly dashboard that provides detailed insights allowing property managers to understand the portfolio of their business easily.
Moreover, it is featured with first-class compliance and a great migration experience. The app has a tenant console providing them with all the necessary information. Similarly, there is a separate console for managers using which they can carry out their operations.
Real estate property management software and their applications can be installed on-premises, or it can be web-based or cloud-based.
The cloud-based apps, such as Console Cloud, make the software remote, thus allowing users to use the software remotely from their smartphones and tablets.
For owners of single-family housing, on-premises applications like Cozy can meet their needs. Innago, which is a simplified app is also a good property management software for landlord with a small piece of property, as it is user friendly without any charges.
More advanced apps like PackageX Mailroom and Building Link can be installed by commercial properties, multi-family housing associations and condominiums.
These software with their advanced technologies, allow managers to cater to a large number of people.
There are 5 principles of property management used by managers in the real estate industry. Using these principles, the property managers manage their properties in a better way and cater to the residents of those properties.
Let us take a look at the 5 major principles of the industry.
Real estate companies have divided the work into departments such as finance, accounting, marketing, leasing, and operations. The reason for this division is to better organize the work.
Within the divisions, the work is further divided and assigned to individual stakeholders who ensure that each task is completed to its best. The division allows stakeholders to be responsible and be held accountable as well.
Real estate properties have seen growth in their companies and an increase in the net worth with division of work as it motivates each individual to contribute positively.
The managers of this industry have proven to perform better with the authority and responsibility that the owners have provided them with.
Subsequently, the managers work towards protecting the net worth of the company. Besides, they work on striving company growth as well.
Discipline is an essential element of every company. Similarly, the real estate companies need to bring in discipline to acquire outstanding output from operations and the staff members.
By incorporating discipline in the mission and vision of companies, the owners can ensure that the company management will be carried out with greater efficiency.
Without discipline, it is likely that the real estate companies, like any other company, will fall apart. Lack of coordination, delays, and not following procedures can lead to negative outcomes and subsequently cause the downfall of the organization.
Some companies perform better with a vertical hierarchy and forming a centralized authority, while others perform better by decentralization where the hierarchy is horizontal. These systems allow authorities to be divided accordingly among the staff members.
It is essential for real estate companies to find the right balance between these systems. Both of them have their own set of benefits, thus companies have designed their strategy keeping their goals in mind.
The management must understand that the individual interests have to be kept aside while prioritizing the company’s interest. This way, the company objectives can be achieved allows individuals to meet their own needs as well.
If the management; however, does not focus on enforcing organizational goals, it is very likely that the staff will lose focus of the company mission and vision. They will start focusing on their interests, making it difficult to obtain organizational goals.
Thus, the management has to make this an essential part of the system and let everyone focus on what the company needs, rather than personal needs.
If you own a property and you want to manage it efficiently, it is time that you adopt one of these solutions immediately. A property management software will automate your routine processes like data entry while increasing your outreach to find tenants for your vacant property.
Through these software solutions, you can increase the net worth of your property by efficiently taking care of all the relevant operations required for property management.
As the real estate market expands, you can stay competitive with the support of these software systems. Thus, it is time to check your business requirements and find a suitable software to grow your business, provide convenience to tenants and increase your business value.