Property Management Software is such an important part of any property manager or property owner. With all the automation available now, where do you begin to look for property management software and what should you look for?

Here’s a quick guide to assist you with choosing the right property management software for your portfolio.

Check with your network on LinkedIn, BiggerPockets and Facebook

It’s a good idea to tap into your current network and ask other property managers about their recommendations.

Questions to consider asking:

  1. What property management software do you use?
  2. How was the on boarding experience?
  3. What’s the pros and cons?
  4. Has the software helped grow your business?

This will give you an idea of what the most popular software systems are and the pros and cons of each. However, keep in mind that everyone’s business needs are different so what may work for them may not work for you and vice versa.

Identify your needs

It’s important that you choose a property management software that is the right fit for your needs. Every business has different needs based on your portfolio size and type.

Understand what you are trying to resolve by moving to a rental property management software system. What are your business pain points? If you are bogged down with administrative tasks, look for a property management software that will include built-in automated tasks to increase efficiency and reduce this workload.

Here are some of the most common web-based property management software features:

Complete Property Management Accounting

This is necessary for success. Many low-end rental property software advertise about the accounting features but often times it is not a complete accounting package. Make sure you can add your own chart of accounts including bank accounts. Journal entries, transfers, reconciliation etc. Your choice in real estate property software needs to be best-in-class with all standard accounting features including built-in automation tasks such as recurring transactions.

Mobile Apps

Seems like property managers and real estate professionals are always on the go. That’s why a great property management software will include a variety of mobile apps. This gives you the ability to manage your properties, run reports, conduct onsite property inspections, pay invoices, submit work orders and a plethora of other functions anytime and anywhere.

Improve Communications

The ability to send email and text messages to tenants, vendors and owners is vital to property managers. Good property management software will have these features as well as maintain a log of all communications for historical lookup.

Work Orders

Building and Property Maintenance should be a core part of any online property management application.

Property Inspections

Conducting regular inspections as well as move in and move out inspections is critical to the maintenance of your real estate investment properties. Property management software should include an app for onsite inspections and provide reports and store them for future reference. Inspections should follow common templates and have the ability to document each inspected item in each room, complete with photos.

Software Support

Support is an important part of your relationship with your software provider. Do they offer an online FAQ library? Free training? Can they be contacted by phone? (many cannot) Online Chat? Ability for you to book an appointment?

Unlimited users

The best online property management software allow you to have unlimited users at no extra cost.

Sophisticated data security

Data security is a serious matter. Make sure your property management software has authentication and 128 bit SSL encryption (the level of encryption use in the financial industry).

Compare Pricing and Features

Now that you have done some analyzing and know what features you are looking for, it’s time to create a shortlist of some property management software systems and compare their prices and features. Make sure that the software will also handle your portfolio for many years. Switching software is time consuming and costly. We recommend only the full featured real estate property management software systems and not the ‘lite’ version.

About PropertyZar

PropertyZar is a real estate technology company specifically in the web-based property management software for owners and professional property managers. Learn more