August 13, 2019
How to Choose the Right Property Management Software for You
Property management software helps property professionals to deliver better customer service to their renters as well as drive more efficiencies in their operations. With the right software solution, owners and managers can automate numerous processes and improve revenues. And, because property management software is an “anywhere, anytime” cloud-based solution, it can be accessed by staff and contractors alike on a phone, tablet or desktop.
But how do you know which property management software is right for your property management firm? Let’s look at how you use it and key features to look for.
How You Use It
For Residential Property Management
Whether you oversee various multifamily buildings or multiple units across a region, your job involves ensuring revenue, lowering turnover and maintaining the property. Residential property managers look for property management software that enables tenant self-service in the form of online payments and maintenance requests. it’s also important that your property management software enable marketing tools that allow you to automatically update ILS listings to fill vacancies as soon as possible. You should also be able to create different websites for each rental building, and brand each one individually.
For HOAs and Condos Associations
These types of communities have certain levels of expectations concerning building and concierge services, communications, resident relations and online presence. HOA/Condo managers should look for a customer-centric system that includes a web-based resident portal to more easily communicate with residents via desktop, tablet or phone. Through the resident portal HOA/Condo managers can share CC&Rs, and send reports to the appropriate board members. Staff and residents should also be able to track service requests.
For Commercial Property Management
Tenants in commercial properties want fast and efficient response to maintenance issues. It’s vital that your property management software feature an automated system for overseeing maintenance and handling work orders. Your dashboard should allow you to quickly identify problem areas so that you can plan for preventative maintenance. Businesses place a high premium on security. It’s essential that your commercial property management software include permissions for safe sharing of reports and billing, with end-to-end encryption, multiple firewalls and secure access.
For Student Properties
If you are managing student properties you face some distinct challenges: Like mass move-ins and move-outs at certain times of the year, and being able to divide the rent by room/roommates. Just like with residential properties, it’s important to be able to automate and easily update your ILS listings so you can quickly post vacancies when students prepare to move out. Student often share the rent, so your software should feature built-in rent splitting for housemates. Online payment options makes it easier for first-time renters to pay on time.
Features to Look For
No matter how you use your property management software here are some key features to look for:
Ease of Use
Not all software solutions are intuitive. For your people and your tenants to quickly adopt the property management solution into their everyday routine, it needs to be so easy to use with no learning curves. From running reports to interact with tenants it has to work exactly the way you would expect it to. Interfaces and dashboards must be easy to understand and use. If you are in the market, be sure to request a demo, so you can see how it works.
Ask about the backup and security measures to ensure that your data is kept both safe and private. Inquire about where servers are located, as you need to know that your data is always compliant with laws and requirements. Other things to look for: end-to-end encryption, multiple firewalls, secure access and remote site linking keeps sensitive data private and secure.
A company is only as good as its people, and how they work together. Property management software should enhance collaboration between teams and better coordination of tasks. Things like at-a-glance dashboards, digital records, communications tools, and anywhere/anytime access play a huge role in managing your business more efficiently and effectively.
The Ability to Scale
This is crucial for growing property firms. Look for property management software that allows you to scale up to the tools you need as your business grows. You might not need all modules at the beginning, but as your business grows, you can use them to automate and streamline complexity.
A rearview mirror view of your operations isn’t good enough. You need to be able to get a comprehensive and accurate look at your properties. This includes things like which properties have the most number of collections, which portfolios have the most amount of maintenance requests, etc. These real-time KPIs give you valuable info about the health of your assets.
Testimonials and Customer Base
Look for testimonials and to see which other companies use the property management software. You’ll want to see that they have a robust client list of reputable firms. This means the software company has earned the trust of clients and is working to deliver results.
How Property Vista Helps
Property management software is an invaluable investment for your business. We’re here to make sure you get the best ROI possible. At Property Vista, we offer a range of software solutions covering all types of properties, including residential, commercial, condo / homeowners’ association and student properties. All our solutions are easy to use, mobile-friendly and scalable. Learn more about our suite of property management software!