Last month we touched on the ever-expanding world of proptech and discussed a few of the different apps we have our eye on. Today we want to highlight what we have found to be the most important specific feature improving the residential tenant experience and also that of the property owner; the resident portal. In the past few years, resident portals have made streamlined the property management process from application, to rent collection and maintenance. For the property owner, portals allow for easily accessed data and transparent accounting.
Starting with the leasing process, a resident portal allows for prospective tenants to easily view available apartments and then seamlessly submit an application. Having residents utilize the property website from the start is a great way to get them into the habit of utilizing technology for all of their property management needs, especially rent collection & maintenance. According to a Money magazine survey 61% of millennials and 42% of older generations are now paying bills online, so why not rent? The many factors that can cause delays with check payment (including the younger set not knowing how to write one) slow down the collections process. Online payments are not only faster, but they also allow residents flexibility in payment options including setting up recurring payments. When paying online residents and property managers alike also have a nearly real-time view of the account status and the time savings for property managers not having to deal with paper checks and resident ledgers is tremendous.
Along with easing the payment and application processes resident portals are helping make the maintenance request process more painless for all. Instead of a phone call, often answered by a service and then bounced around to the right person, residents can easily enter a maintenance request through their portal and the manager and maintenance team are quickly and easily notified. This certainly streamlines the process and may help save money by decreasing the response time. Residents can also upload photos of maintenance issues directly through a portal to ensure maintenance understand the issue and can get the repair completed quickly and accurately.
For the property owner, these portals provide robust accounting software that allows for a more transparent view of the buildings financial status. With this software, property owners will also have access to their cash faster. There are no long waits as accountants prepare spreadsheets, owners can see collects and expenses by easily logging into their app or portal. This technology really is a win, win, win for tenants, managers, and owners.
As e-commerce has become the norm and there is an app for practically everything it follows that the property management experience has gone online and these portals will only continue to help keep residents happy and save managers and owners money by streamlining time-consuming yet crucial processes. These portals appeal to the tech-savvy customer and can be marketed as an additional perk for your property. However, with all this talk of technology, let us not forget the importance of a personal touch and exceptional customer service in keeping residents satisfied. The key here is to use this technology to save time and money while still providing the resident with an exceptional experience.