When it comes to managing commercial properties, it’s always important to understand every characteristic of the property, what your client needs, and how you can best deliver your property management service to them. In today’s age, commercial property managers are now utilizing special software dedicated to property management for commercial clients. This software makes it easier for property managers specializing in commercial properties to not only manage their properties, but track key statistics, help advertise their vacant properties, and much more.
Questions to Get Started
As you’re shopping around for commercial property management software, it helps to understand your property management situation. Not all commercial property management software solutions are going to be the best for your specific situation, but you can narrow the results based on a number of characteristics surrounding your property management portfolio or situation.
How many properties (or units) do I currently manage or intend to manage?
Knowing how many properties you are currently managing or how many you intend to scale up to can impact the type of software you choose. While property management software is designed to help you track any number of properties, there may be certain limitations or restrictions based on the number of properties you manage.
What type of properties do I manage?
The more specific you can get about the types of properties that you manage, the better. Even if you are branded as a “commercial” property management firm, some software may suit better for different commercial needs. Consider your current management portfolio and determine which types of property you are specializing in: office buildings, industrial, retail/restaurant, multi-family, land, miscellaneous, leisure, or healthcare.
What features do I absolutely need from commercial property management software?
Knowing what types of software features you need can drastically reduce your hunt for the the perfect software. Ask yourself about the types of features that will help you to reduce the time spent managing your software, how to make it easier to connect with your clients, features that will make it easier to fill vacant properties, and whatever else you need.
Below are just a few features that you may want to look for in commercial property management software:
- Tracking, billing and reconciling of shared common area maintenance expenses and income.
- Track upcoming increases to rent, based on each lease and its duration.
- Reports and statistics that can be organized and oriented in a way that suits your commercial business.
- Online payment features that make it easier for you and your tenants to make or request payments.
- And more! Whatever feature you absolutely need, make sure you verify that the software has it or can provide an alternative solution to what you’re looking for.
AppFolio is a cloud-based property management software tool built for the modern property manager. AppFolio specializes in different areas of property management, including commercial, residential, student housing, HOA, and more.
AppFolio can assist with the following features:
Assist with owner-manager relations.
- Online owner portal.
- Owner & vender eCheck.
- Owner contributions.
- Document sharing.
- Texting to owners.
Assist with marketing and filling vacancies.
- Professional websites.
- Marketing campaigns.
- Real-time vacancy dashboard.
- Advertise vacancies by rent per square foot.
Introduce automation into the leasing process.
- Online tenant portal.
- Texting to renters.
- Track important lease activities.
- Schedule rent increases.
Quickly react to maintenance requests.
- Online maintenance requests.
- Maintenance contact center.
- Work orders.
- Mobile inspections.
Simplify your accounting process with customized reporting.
- Commercial oriented reporting.
- Online rent payments.
- Common area maintenance (CAM) tracking and reconciliation.
- AP approval process.
Quicken can be a great solution for commercial property owners who may not yet have a large network of commercial properties that they manage. Quicken can help property managers merge their personal and business accounting into a single place, reducing the amount of time spent on administrative tasks regarding finances and accounting.
Payment & Contract Tracking
To simplify the management process, Quicken is capable of storing information and data on both tenants and vendors who are involved with their properties. The software is capable of alerting you when payments are late, help assess late fees, keep track of damage expenses, and more. The software can also be programmed to send out notices to tenants, vendors or even you based on certain criteria.
Individual & Rental Finances
Property managers that succeed know exactly how their rentals and properties are affecting their cash flow or contributing to their bottom line. Property management software helps to alleviate the mundane aspects of budgeting, by tracking income and expenses of each individual property. Quicken can also assist with tracking credit cards, bank loans, retirement, investment accounts, and more.
Property Management Taxes
Property managers need to maintain careful and precise record keeping in order to avoid any tax issues with the IRS. The Quicken property management software can help you keep tabs on business vehicle mileage, home office expenses, utility payments, maintenance, labor costs, and much more.
Total Management is a great software solution for commercial property managers that want to improve the quality of their client relations. Total Management provides a full suite of features for both you (property management), your tenants (the users), as well as providing additional accounting features to help you manage your commercial property management business.
Below are some of the key features for property managers, users, and additional accounting features:
Features for Property Management
- Screen tenants.
- Late rent.
- Letter wizard.
- Simplified moving.
- Payment entry.
- Security deposits.
- Tenant portal.
- Work orders.
- Online marketing.
- CAM & tax reconciliation.
Features for Users
- Easy navigation.
- Superior support.
Features for Accounting
- Accounting center.
- Dashboard & reports.
- Duplicate invoice catcher.
- Vendor management.
- Unlimited users.
- Viewing class.
As you’re shopping around for property management software for your commercial properties, always make sure that you understand exactly what you need out of your chosen software. The more features it has does not always mean it’s the best. The software that is “the best” will be dependant on what exactly it can provide you individually as a manager. You may not need all the same features that other property managers need.
We suggest that you look through the above features to get a general idea of what features are available on the market, pick out which types are best for you, and narrow your results based on what you need. Regardless of the software you choose, almost all of them have the power to help minimize the amount of time and effort you put into managing your properties.