There are several key advantages to self-managing your properties. The primary advantage though is that it’s a way to minimize your costs while ensuring your properties are managed to your demanding standards.
However, self-managing also has its disadvantages. Mainly that it takes time and effort to deal with the day to day tasks required of a landlord, such as income and expense tracking, property maintenance, managing tenants, and dealing with vacancies.
Thankfully, there are numerous tools on the market designed to help you establish and manage a professional operation, maximize profits, and minimize the time input required. Below we’ve assembled a list of the top tools to help you run your rental property business.
Filling your Properties
Vacancies can quickly become one of a landlords biggest expenses. Re-filling a vacant unit might not happen instantly, during this vacancy period you’re no longer receiving income, but your key property expenses, such as mortgage payments don’t just magically go away.
The right tools will help you fill your property fast and efficiently.
Set the Right Rent
To determine the right rent rate to set for your market you will want to do a price comparison of similar properties in the area. This can be done manually by researching similar rentals on a site like Zillow or Zumper. Or you can employ a tool like Rentometer or Rentrange to quickly get a report to help you make decisions fast and save time.
Marketing your units
In order to find great tenants, you will want to get your property listing in front of as many people as possible. We recommend making use of several platforms including Craigslist, Facebook Marketplace, Zillow, and Hotpads.
Each of these sites gets tens of thousands of views a day or more and by syndicating across each platform you are sure to get a high number of enquiries and fill your vacancy fast.
After narrowing down your applicants you will want to run a screening report for your prospective tenants to check your things like credit and rental history. Ultimately you want to determine that the applicants can and will pay rent on time and in full every month. Landlord Studio has a tenant screening service built into the software. Get a full SmartMove tenant screening report with a credit check, criminal background check, rental history, and more.
As we invariably adopt more and more digital technology into our day to day lives there is no longer any need to sign documents in person any more. Instead, simply email the lease over to your tenants, have them sign them digitally and send them back. Adobe offers a free tool that allows you to e-sign documents – however, should you want to do more than simply sign the document you will need to upgrade to a paid account.
Managing your Rentals
Online rent collection will help you streamline your rental property business. Choosing the right rent collection tool for your needs will help you reduce late rent dramatically while simultaneously improving the relationship between you and your tenants. There are numerous tools that you can consider, ranging from solutions like Zelle which enables bank to bank transfers through their app, to solutions like Landlord Studio which has an online rent collection tool built into their property management software.
Tracking Income and Expenses
It’s important to keep meticulous records of your income and expenses for each of your rental properties throughout the tax year. However, traditionally, this has been complex and required extensive and time-consuming admin work at the end of each month. With a tool like Landlord Studio, however, you can manage your finances from any device, digitize receipts at the point of sale and even automate income tracking by pairing their income tacking with the online rent collection tool.
Maintenance and Repairs
There are several tools on the market that can be used to help manage and track your repairs and maintenance. There are a few ways you could manage this. The first would be to hire a property management company. However, many landlords want to maintain greater control over their property management than this.
The second option is to outsource your maintenance management to a company like Latchel. this company uses software to help manage your maintenance requests for you.
Landlording requires a commitment of time, and it can be quite daunting, especially for newer landlords. However, it is one of the best and most assured ways to build wealth. For individuals with small to mid-sized portfolios it makes a great deal of self to look after the day to day running of the properties, and armed with the right tools it’s not only possible to self-manage your properties but to do so efficiently and professionally. The tools outlined above are just a few of the key solutions that landlords are using already to save time and minimize overheads to create a cashflow positive business they can rely on.