Property management software is a program made to help acquire and maintain property portfolios, which can be incredibly useful for landlords, letting agents and property managers. Jodie Deakin of Decorus for Sage explains its uses and benefits
Property management software can be intimidating to real estate professionals if you’re unfamiliar with it. Thankfully, most solutions are designed with ease in mind. You don’t have to be IT literate to use the software, and it can support your everyday work processes.
What is property management software?
Property management software is a program made to help acquire and maintain property portfolios. This can be incredibly useful for landlords, letting agents and property managers.
You may see property management software abbreviated to ‘PMS’ online. Some property management systems may also sync up with accountancy software packages such as Sage and other software packages such as Microsoft Office.
Depending on the property management system that you choose it can support the following markets:
- Student Housing
- Social Housing
- Storage Sector
Software development teams will usually ask for a little bit of information about you as property management software is tailored to the user.
Accurately track tenants
This type of software can often act as a customer relationship management (CRM) tool, allowing users to keep a log of all individual conversations and updates. The benefit of this is that teams and clients can collaborate more effectively when it comes to prospective and existing tenants. If the property management software also offers real-time updates, it means that users will receive the most up to date information as soon as they log on.
A clever feature of property management software is its ability to automate common processes. If you mention recovering arrears to someone in the property sector, you’re likely to get a large groan as a response. A great example of how digital automation can help people is that the software can automatically send out chase letters after set periods. Not only does this help save time but there is no need to set multiple reminders to make sure rent arrives on time.
Tasks which typically take up most of the day to complete, such as creating and sending out invoices, can be reduced to a single button click. Bulk invoicing is a tool that can transform your workload. Professionals who are used to traditional paper methods can often be shocked by how much time it saves and rarely look back after crossing over to digital.
Making accounting easier
Most real estate professionals hate diving into a screen full of numbers, with some struggling to tie figures together. As such, bookkeeping is often the bane of property managers – it’s tedious, sometimes confusing, and it’s easy for small details to be missed.
Property management software gives you a clear breakdown of funds in your client account, showing transactions immediately. All the information you need is stored within the system, making it easy to find if you ever need to cross-reference costs.
If you use an external accountant, using property management software can help reduce the amount of work your accountant has to do. Some companies may also choose to bring bookkeeping in-house to save even more money.
Track progress effectively
Being continually occupied with maintaining your properties, it’s all too easy to lose track of how well your portfolio is performing. With property management software that offers an accounting function, you can conveniently view your company’s profit and loss to see your success.
Many property management systems will also let you drill down to account level so you can see the performance of each of your properties. This information can be accessed at any time and be turned into financial reports that can be easily shared with colleagues.
The same can be said of your property advertisement figures. Many property management systems come with built-in analytical tools to measure your online promotions.
Attract tenants with great marketing
You don’t have to be a marketing professional to gain a competitive edge over the market. Property software can sometimes come with marketing suite features that help you advertise properties promptly.
Speed is the key when you’re trying to fill vacancies, so uploading property profiles quickly can make all the difference.
Access information anywhere
Ambitious property managers will want to keep a close eye on developments even when they’re out of the office. This is a huge advantage of property management software over traditional methods.
Cloud-based technology opens the door to accessibility like never before. By storing all your data online, you can get a hold of the information and files you need from anywhere on the planet. You can also login to the software using any kind of laptop, PC or mobile (if the software also comes in app form).
Get extra security
With more old-fashioned methods of storing files, there is a much higher chance of security breaches. Paper documents can easily be damaged or lost, which can then be tricky to recover.
The complete opposite can be said about property management software. Sophisticatedly built with additional security protocols already present, this kind of software can offer you peace of mind.
On top of this, if you do happen to delete an important file it can be easily retrieved. Going digital allows you to have an extra safety net in the case of human error, which can always be handy.
Jodie Deakin is marketing executive at Decorus for Sage