What is property management software?

Property management software is purpose-built software that helps those working in property manage leases, streamline maintenance tasks and stay in control of finances.

Unlike using generic CRM systems or spreadsheets to manage your portfolio, property management software has been developed specifically with the tasks and challenges of property management in mind. Typically, the key features you can expect to find  will cover maintenance, reporting, communications management and document storage. More comprehensives systems may also include full accounting functionality.

 Who uses property management software?

  • Property owners/landlords who manage their portfolio in-house
  • Managing agents – commercial and residential who manage on behalf of the property owner
  • Commercial occupiers who need help keeping track of their rent, portfolio maintenance and finances

When should a business invest in property management software?

A key indicator for whether you need property management software is the size of the portfolio managed. The bigger the portfolio, the bigger the need to have a dedicated system.

There are also other common triggers too, such as:

  • Your current system is no longer being supported/outdated - this creates a risk of not having future support if something goes wrong and missing out on new features/functionality
  • You're using separate accounting and property management systems - perhaps you have data duplication errors or you struggle to synchronize your data. Switching to one system is an option many people take. 

Alternatively, you might be facing issues due to the fact you have a property management system in place that is not the right fit for your business. Find out more in our blog, 6 signs your team needs a new property management system

What are the benefits of property management software?

Those who make the switch to property management software do so for a number of different reasons which are all dependent on their own business processes. The most common benefit is scalability for business growth.  A dedicated system allows you to manage everything in one place, streamlining processes, automating manual tasks and reducing inefficiencies.

Property management software can also provide:

  • An audit trail for regulation/compliance
  • Communication tool for clients/tenants/suppliers
  • Database of your full portfolio – having your data stores in place means you can report on your full portfolio
  • Comprehensive reporting 

Read our blog spreadsheets vs. dedicated property management software here to find out more. 

Common features of property management software

Property management systems can vary in functionality, but in general you can expect these features to commonly be included:

  • Management of maintenance works
  •  CRM – storage and management of inbound and outbound communications
  •  Critical date reminders – rent reviews, lease breaks, renewals etc.
  •  Storage of documents – leases, insurance documents, photos etc.
  •  Service charge – real-time view of budget/expenditure and automated reconciliations
  •  Supplier management
  •  Full accounting

With a vast amount of systems on the market - all varying in price, functionality and spec – the task of selecting the right one is not easy. Ensure you find the right system for your team with our complete buyers guide.

Implementing property management software into your business 

Like most things in business, there’s no magic formula or right/wrong way to get a system up and running. The approach that company A takes will be different to company B. But one thing is for certain, those who see the biggest success and return on investment are those who plan.

Our ultimate guide for successful property management software implementation brings together over 20 years of software implementation experience, providing you with key points for consideration and practical guidelines to help you along the way. Alternatively, we have a quick blog, implementing property management software; what do I need to know?

Property Management software and Making Tax Digital 

The VAT scheme has become mandatory as of 1 April 2019, and VAT-registered businesses with a taxable turnover above the VAT threshold (£85,000) are mandated to keep digital VAT records and send returns using MTD-compatible software.

The move to digital integration will eliminate many of the existing paper-based processes, allowing businesses and their agents to devote more time and attention to maximising business opportunities, encouraging growth and fostering good financial planning.

Propman is fully MTD ready, and everything you need to know if covered in our useful blog, Propman & Making Tax Digital which you can read here