Technology is gradually revolutionizing the entire real estate industry….and it’s happening fast. Unfortunately, many property managers and realtors are yet to get the script right. Yeah, of course you’ve already shifted some operations online and consequently leveraging multiple software at the same time- so what could you possibly be doing wrong? Isn’t combining personal notes, whiteboards, personal memory and various online software versions good enough in running a property management business? What else would you need to streamline your workplace?
Well, this, I assume should be a very controversial subject among real estate professionals, especially ones who’ve been in the industry for a couple of decades. They have literally experienced it all, and have managed to hold their businesses together, even with a couple of hand-prepared ledgers and files. So, how would technology possibly revolutionize their businesses?
Before we jump into the facts, let’s explore some scientific studies on task management. University of Hamburg conducted a scientific study which revealed that the human mind focus drops from minutes to seconds when we are on the web, especially when we’re are using different tabs and tools. According to Associated Press, human ability to pay attention stood at 12 seconds in the year 2000, but subsequently dropped to 8 by the year 2008. Evidently, we’re paying less attention as technology continues to develop, which should subsequently reduce productivity.
So, what am I driving at here? Are these studies indicating that property managers were more productive before technology? Well, of course not. Technology makes things easier, but trying to adopt many different software versions in your firm could hinder efficiency. The internet has come with many social tools that distract us from our management workflows, especially when we begin shifting from one package to another. Workloads increase and collectively streamlining them becomes more difficult especially on different software versions.
Evidently, adopting property management software is not just enough. You need to develop an effectual system comprising of a single comprehensive software, tailored to efficiently handle all management operations including work order plus maintenance tracking, in a way that streamlines your entire business according to your objectives. And that’s, precisely letting your software work smart for you. This is what it entails:
Managing All Your Maintenance Operations From One Place
A property management software like Property Matrix allows you to integrate and manage all your maintenance operations from one place. You don’t have to keep memorizing multiple usernames, contractors’ contacts, repair websites and what not. All current, pending and past maintenance processes and projects are right within the software, in one expansive, user-friendly platform.
Well, of course there are many contact management sites within the internet…probably millions or so. And smartphones plus tablets are even coming with pre-installed contact management applications. So, why would you need another third party application to store your contractors’ contacts, while you can simply compile them into one group through a contact management software?
The thing with Property Matrix is…it’s not just a database for maintenance contractors. You’ll also be able to track all the processes, from the first time they are brought up by tenants to completion. Oh yes, that’s right…you don’t even have to scout your properties to call in a contractor. A tenant can simply lodge a request through the system, and you’ll be able to disburse payments within it when the work is done. Pretty neat, huh.
One of the biggest headaches of property management, especially when you manage an expansive portfolio of properties, is handling many tasks at the same time. Dealing with many tenant applications while maintaining properties and tracking payments or work orders at the same time could be very cumbersome, particularly within the busiest tenant turnover seasons. Efficient management of such tasks requires a good prioritization and delivery process. But, in most cases, when the load becomes too heavy, a bulk of property management businesses outsource to other service providers, or worse, procrastinate.
In his book The Art of Procrastination, John Perry argues that “people can dawdle to their advantage by restructuring their to-do lists so that they are always accomplishing something of value. Well, that seems legit to procrastination sympathizers, but psychological scientists believe otherwise- failure to prioritize through procrastination greatly hinders efficiency. So, it only makes sense to conclude that through a systematic alignment and prioritization of tasks and subsequent scheduling, a good property management software obeys the laws of science.
Eliminating Geographical Borders
One thing, I have to admit, that many property managers don’t do, is travelling often. A vacation in the middle of the month, especially for a head manager, would be detrimental to your firm. Why would you even travel in the first place, yet property management, especially when you’re system is entirely offline, requires on-site supervision? Who would conduct maintenance management on your behalf?
A property management system does exactly that- it eliminates borders, allowing you to remotely coordinate your work orders and maintenance requests. You could easily coordinate manage multiple maintenance processes on properties in Miami all the way from Washington. And once they have been marked complete, payments are disbursed to respective contractors. Additionally, you’ll be able to receive payments straight to your system and bank them without physically meeting your tenants. As a matter of fact, you might only need to see your tenant during the screening process, and possibly as he/she moves out. The latter however, is not critical since you can comfortably manage the tenant turn over process right from your management system.
And that’s not all there is to offer with a comprehensive and reliable property management system. This piece has only zeroed in on task handling maintenance management. I plan to delve deeply into other critical software features in subsequent posts, to help you get a good feel of what the fastest growing property management firms are using to propel their businesses.