Real estate can be a lucrative investment, but managing properties can be an enormous headache. Property owners and managers must juggle and master marketing, accounting, screening tenants, collecting payments, completing maintenance and a whole host of duties .
With so many roles to fill, it’s ironic that the real estate industry has been slow to adopt technological advancements. Fortunately for those on the inside, that is finally beginning to change.
Paperless contracts, cloud data storage and management software are being embraced by real estate professionals. Some of the best applications ease property managers’ burdens significantly enough that they can excel at the position while increasing profits.
A few of the movers and shakers in real-estate technology include:
This provider of property management software solutions has been adopted by those in the multi-family, single-family and vacation rental industries, as well as the commercial real-estate industry. Founded in 1998, RealPage offers software and data analytics for almost 12,500 clients around the globe.
What does RealPage do? The platform primarily provides automated leasing, renting and accounting tools, as well as marketing support to help owners locate and capture leads more effectively. The system also provides advanced features like applicant screening, and revenue management.
The company recently launched its Commercial Property Management 5.0 software, a new version that offers even more applications and services designed for mid-market owners and managers with commercial, industrial and retail assets. One of the enhanced features includes the incorporation of Smart Source Accounting, which will help with outsourcing accounting and lease administration services.
Property managers are saving time and money with AppFolio’s cloud-based software. The online property management system provides complete accounting functionality, as well as tools to assist with marketing, leasing, applications, resident screening and even online rent collection.
The support doesn’t end there. AppFolio also includes functions that perform mobile inspections and communicates with tenants through text messages. It even features an Owner Portal, which provides instant access to reports and statements.
The latest version of AppFolio features performance insights using real-time data and custom dashboards that allow property managers to keep track of all their tasks. Built-in workflow functions save time by automating many routine tasks.
Any real estate professional can affirm that maintenance is a vital part of the business. Buildings, appliances and other structures need maintenance, and the property manager has to find someone to work on them.
HomeAdvisor simplifies the process of contracting home-improvement and maintenance services at the local level. By providing just a few details, property owners and managers are provided with quotes from the best local service professionals, including plumbers, architects, carpenters, painters, HVAC techs, roofers, appliance repairers and carpet layers.
HomeAdvisor also offers a detailed cost guide featuring local and national cost data for more than 500 types of jobs. Understanding what costs to expect can help property owners budget for all sorts of maintenance costs and building upgrades.
Amazon Home Services
Need a task accomplished? Amazon Home Services enables users to buy professional services offered in their zip code. The platform eases the process of hiring a house cleaner or a painter, but also connects customers with those who can perform tasks like mounting a television or shoveling snow.
Property managers can trust the services they purchase through Amazon Home Services because all of the providers are insured and possess the required licenses and credentials to perform the job. Plus, anyone who will provide an in-home service through the platform must also undergo an extensive background check.
Scheduling a service appointment is as simple as shopping on Amazon. Personalize your search, then when you find the service you’re looking for just add it to your cart and proceed to checkout. There, you’ll be able to provide the service address and schedule preferred dates and times.
Motili fills some of the gaps of the above service providers by offering a nationwide network of contractors, which saves both property owners and managers time and money. Whereas other platforms might provide a list of applicable service providers, usually at a local level – or even allow the service to be purchased online – Motili connects single-family, multi-family and commerial property owners and operators to its nationwide network of contractors.
Because of this extensive network, Motili is able to serve as a single point of contact for HVAC and hot water repair and replacement projects for entire portfolios of properties – rather than doing this on a per-property basis.
How does Motili work? Once a customer is on-boarded, Motili completes a service call to assess a property, or a portfolio of properties. This process provides strategic insight into the status of HVAC and hot water units at a property or even a nationwide network of properties. This allows the owner and operator to make intelligent decisions on when to repair vs replace a unit. Once a report is created, Motili is able to fulfill the actual repair and replacement projects via its on-demand contractor network.
Motili continuously analyzes the data it collects about users’ properties, assets and jobs ordered through the system, and then aggregates it by location to track performance and predict future needs and spending.