Many landlords will tell you that there aren’t enough hours in a day for all the work they have to do as it’s a demanding job that requires a considerable amount of time. A typical day in the life of a landlord can entail everything from filling vacancies to collecting rent from late tenants and taking care of needed repairs. What’s more, landlords have to comply with various local, state and federal regulations.
That’s why more and more landlords are discovering the benefits of using property management software. This type of software offers several perks, such as reducing your workload. When you have less bookkeeping to do, you more time to grow your business and meet with tenants.
It helps you take care maintenance and other tasks. Another bonus is that the software can be operated quickly and can fit into your budget. If you own and manage rentals, here are some of the advantages and basic functions of property management software.
A few of the main functions include:
- Electronic updates—Having property management software eliminates the job of having to manually update Excel spreadsheets. Besides saving you time, this feature gives you a good financial picture of your rentals by tracking expenses and income.
- Maintenance requests—This type of software takes gives you the ability to respond to needed maintenance appeals at any time or hour of the day.
- Tenant advertising and screening—In addition to advertising for new tenants on sites such as Zillow or Craigslist, property management software also screens potential tenants. There are even options for doing background checks. What’s more, ads for tenants can be saved when vacancies occur.
- 24/7 information access—By using property management software, there’s no need to carry a laptop and find internet access. All you need is a mobile phone or tablet to use all the software features. This is especially helpful for checking on rental payments, applications and maintenance needs.
- Performing financial reports when needed is another important function.
- When choosing a product, be sure any software you’re considering is able to perform the basic tasks you need, such as keeping separate ledgers for a property owner and each tenant.
- Check to see if the software can automatically post rent, as well as late fees and management fees.
- Property management software comes in a wide range of prices. Therefore, be sure to consider your particular needs and don’t overspend for features you may not need. On the other hand, being too cheap can mean settling for defective software, resulting in wasted money and time.
- Although there are some features that you could probably do without, they can make your job easier. Consider that some products include pop-up messages listing tenants owing a landlord rent money, along with log conversations with tenants.
- Ask a vendor to perform complete demonstration of their product.
- You could even ask for a trial version that allows you to test it out before making an investment. We use Buildium on our properties. You can try it free for 15 days.
Other Considerations and Warnings
- In most cases, there’s nothing to install because property management software is cloud-operated. But if this is not the cause, ensure that you can easily install the software program.
- Software should be user-friendly and include a comprehensive online guide. Ask about the time limit for free support and make sure you get a plan that’s 60 to 90 days or more.
- If possible, look for a vendors offering free unlimited support. Also, ask if you still receive technical support for older versions.
- Some products provide additional features that help you save time, such as running credit checks on tenants.
Managing rental properties doesn’t have to be time-consuming or difficult. But it can be overwhelming, especially if you’ve never done it before. To learn everything you’ll ever need to know about the landlord business, why not enroll at the Landlord Property Management Academy. Please contact us and find out more about our comprehensive training programs.