When you work with property management software every day, it can be easy to look past its short comings because you’re already comfortable using it. While deciding to invest in a new software solution is certainly not a small decision, it’s important to see what new software features are available. You never know, you might find an answer to your software woes.
- Marketing Included
Your property management software doesn’t need to have the newest listing technology (although it could), but it should at least cover some of the basics. Look for software that includes a website builder, online application capabilities, vacancy tracking, and a lead log. This way you can attract leads online, keep track of available vacancies, and type in the personal information of prospects that ask for a tour. Every property management software is different, so pay close attention to what they offer in the marketing department. They might just have built-in analytics with real-time traffic and activity reports.
- Online, Automatic Rental Payments
Today, most property management software has online payments already integrated into their system, but if yours doesn’t, it’s time to consider other options. Although you will most likely have a few residents who will still hand in their rent checks each month, automated payments are ultimately much faster to process than 60+ rental checks. Plus, interested applicants always see online payments as a perk. Software companies take rent collections a step further with automatic rent and fee posting, and immediate text and email notifications if a resident has a balance due.
- Mobile Optimized
Depending on whether or not you want to go with premise-based or web-based software, the amount of software providers that offer mobile optimization varies. Web-based software is by nature typically mobile optimized for phone and tablet. While premise-based software doesn’t insure mobile optimization, they might have a separate app or add-on available. In the end, you want to be able to complete forms, inspect units, and put up listings wherever you may be. Choosing property management software that saves you time, and is mobile optimized makes a world of difference.
- Automatically Stays Up-to-Date
Ultimately you want software that not only keeps up with your current needs, but is able to stay compatible in the future. As legislation and security standards change, make sure your property management software (as well as its tenant screening) updates automatically. Cloud-based software is always a good choice, since patches are rolled out automatically. Be aware that some property management software companies charge fees for large updates, some of which are manual.
- Screening Integrations
While having property management software that already offers resident screening is convenient in many ways, don’t forget the quality of the screening data. Screening is your first line of defense against potential bad residents. Look for property management software that is integrated with a quality tenant screening provider, like CIC™, so you can make rental decisions based on the best data possible.
- Customer Support
Costs can spiral out of control if the software company charges every time you need speak to customer or tech support. Ideally you want a SaaS company (like CICTotal Manager™) that provides free support so you can keep your overhead low.
Not all property management software has the same features, so deciding to change your software provider is contingent on what you want. Whether it’s better maintenance request management, accounting tools, or time-saving, mobile forms, keeping an eye out for new and improved (and cost-effective) features will give you an edge when it’s time to shop around. Maybe that time is now.
What software features do you use the most? What features do you wish your property management software had? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below and be sure to subscribe!
Check Out These Other Great Articles!
About the Author
Becky Bower is the Communications Executive here at the Resident Screening Blog. She holds a degree in English, with a focus in creative writing, from CSU Channel Islands. Her biggest weakness is cake and favorite superhero is Batman.