Property management software is going to be more important than ever as we expect to see property managers prioritizing tenant-related concerns and owners leaning more on their property managers for support this year. This is why we put together a summary of the best property management software for multifamily buildings, and how each will benefit your business and residents. Read on for the 10 best property management software solutions for multifamily buildings (in no particular order) to use in 2021.
If it feels like you’re skipping a step, and first need to figure out if you need or could benefit from property management software, jump down to our guide to choosing property management software.
10 Best Property Management Software for Multifamily Buildings
Rentec Direct was founded in 2007 and is now used by over 14,000 property managers to manage over 500,000 units. They are known for their cost effective, simple software for comprehensive property management. Property managers and landlords use the cloud-based solution for maintenance, payment processing, tenant acquisition, and retention. Rentec Direct’s software platform also offers extensive lease management and tools for HOAs. Accounting, financial reporting, and utility bill integration are available for a completely seamless property management experience. Beyond admin management, Rentec Direct offers listing syndication on the most popular rental sites for proactive tenant retention. Most notably, the pricing is based on property size, so you can easily scale Rentec Direct to suit your needs. The platform has an intuitive interface making it easy for tenants to use and administrators to learn how to use. This aligns with the extensive online training offered as support.
Hemlane, a Silicon Valley based company, is a #1 rated, cloud-based software application. They report a 98% customer retention rate, likely due to their focus on long-term leases and simple, intuitive interface. An all-in-one multifamily property management solution, Hemlane has dedicated dashboards for owners, agents, managers, and tenants. It has tracking for applicants, tenant screening, vacancy advertising, lease management, maintenance job tracking, and online rent collection through a simple browser interface. Hemlane is affordably priced for smaller portfolios, but may turn out to be more expensive than competitors such as Yardi when the number of units exceeds 36, to be exact. Hemlane is missing commercial property management features like insurance and tax management, so it may not be the best option for managing mixed portfolios. As a multifamily property management software, however, it has all the tools to curate a successful operation.
Yardi Systems is a well-established property management software company established in 1984. Yardi Breeze is its latest software that was launched in 2018. The system is designed for owners and managers with small- and medium-sized diversified property portfolios of 1,000 units or less. The software packs a lot of power for managing rental properties of all types including multifamily, commercial, affordable housing, student housing, and even self storage. The single integrated platform provides access to all standard PMS features, including advanced features such as CAM Recovery, owner reports and payments, maintenance photos and videos, batch receipts, and more. Most notably, Yardi Breeze has a powerful built-in accounting and reporting system with menu-level access control to help you stay on top of revenues and expenses. Yardi Breeze has a good base pricing for residential properties with a portfolio of up to 100 units. There are also no onboarding, training, or support fees for multifamily and commercial plans.
Condo Control Central
Condo Control Central is a top-rated property management software that has been around for over 12 years. As the name suggests, this solution is built for HOAs and property managers servicing condominium buildings and resident communities. The PMS provides property managers and employees essential features they need to manage the building’s affairs, but the real benefit of Condo Control Central is not its property management features. The app is designed as a community management platform and offers unique features that help build and nurture resident relationships. Features such as discussion forums, events calendar, violation tracking, package scanning and tracking, security patrol, concierge, and others differentiate Condo Control Central from other software platforms. Apart from its community-centric features, the software also stands out due to its extensive integration capability. Yardi, QuickBooks, Avigilon, and Snail are just a few of the property management apps with which Condo Control Central easily integrates to boost accounting and security capabilities. Overall, this property management software is a great choice for building an engaged and well-managed condominium community.
AppFolio is an all-in-one cloud-based property management platform with extensive features. The software is distinguished by its unified infrastructure that delivers all property management, marketing, maintenance, and accounting functions within one cloud-based platform. Additional modules and third party integrations are not necessary to perform advanced functions in AppFolio. Even more impressive, all of its advanced offerings are mobile-friendly. The platform is completely mobile and delivers a streamlined experience to managers, renters, owners, investors, and residents. AppFolio is one of the best apps for managing single- and multi-family residences, commercial properties, student housing, HOAs, and mixed portfolios. Its reasonable price, powerful features and amazing user-friendliness make AppFolio a great choice for managing a multifamily community.
Founded in 1998, RealPage is a global provider of real estate software. The company has an expansive offering of computer applications that help real estate professionals manage everything from marketing to leasing and from resident experience to site and vendor management. In 2017, RealPage acquired On-Site, a leasing and marketing platform, and relaunched as RealPage Property Management Software. The RealPage PMS provides all essential property management, leasing, budgeting, and marketing features and can work with other RealPage products to provide enterprise-grade functionalities such as facilities management, learning management, revenue and expense management, utility and waste management, and much more. Despite its extensive features, RealPage has a simple interface that presents key information in easily palatable graphs and charts. The software is suitable for residential portfolios, student housing, commercial buildings, affordable housing, and mixed portfolios.
Buildium was launched in 2004 by two small-time property owners, Michael and Dimitris. Being in the business themselves, the founders wanted to make property management easier to control while putting the customer first. Their customer-first focus has helped Buildium grow into a thought leader and one of the industry’s best Platform-as-a-Service (Paas) providers. Buildium allows property managers and HOAs to manage every aspect of their business from the office or remotely. The core features include online leasing, application processing, tenant screening, evictions, syndication, and accounting. Buildium is easy, intuitive, and inexpensive. More so, the software stands out because of its durability and build quality. The platform is supported by responsive customer service and thoughtful resources including the Buildium Academy, an online self-guided training program with video lessons for everything from basic setup to sophisticated workflows. Buildium is now owned by RealPage.
ResMan is a Texas-based technology company that designs and develops property management software for servicing mixed-asset portfolios. ResMan has every feature for a successful property management operation – from budgeting, leasing, and marketing to online payments, screening, and maintenance. The software is also supported by a wealth of resources to help with setup, training, and integrations. Moreover, ResMan offers unique Engage and Care modules, which empower property managers to deliver a seamless resident experience. ResMan also fits into current and evolving technology ecosystems because of its virtually endless integration options. ResMan can work with commonly used business applications including CRM, debt collection apps, revenue management apps, payment processing software, and more. The platform can manage multifamily, affordable, and commercial properties with equal finesse.
Rent Manager is a fully integrated, versatile, and powerful property management platform headquartered in Cincinnati, Ohio. Rent Manager’s strongest suit is its exceptional customizability. This extends to the software operability, as well, since Rent Manager offers both an online and standalone version of its platform. The online version has several advantages over the standalone version, including exclusive web-based modules, automatic updates, and data backups. While the upfront cost is less, like most cloud-managed platforms, users are billed a monthly fee, which can sometimes be a deterrent. However, with the cloud-based online version, users have access to unlimited technical support from Rent Manager specialists who have the ability to proxy into the user’s screen to troubleshoot issues and offer advice for best practices. This supports the notion that Rent Manager truly stands out for their customer service and commitment to user and tenant success. This is reflected in their online blog, training courses, and resources, as well. Third-party integration is another important component to customizability, and Rent Manager is no exception. It has the ability to work with a wide range of popular business apps including those used for construction bidding, access control, video intercom, accounting, building management, and more.
Utah-based Entrata began operations in 2003. It is a technology company that brings together websites, utilities, accounting, marketing, and other property functions on one unified platform. Entrata Core is a cloud-based Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) solution for property management servicing multifamily and mixed portfolios of all sizes. Entrata specializes in the financial aspect of property management (and has the credentials to do so based on their separate accounting platform, Entrata Accounting), with advanced features including vendor management, purchase orders, and invoice creation. Entrata Core also offers the basic general ledgering, balance sheet and income statements, and budgeting. Their open API makes it easy to customize the platform to use with revolving property management needs. To date, Entrata has processed over 45 million rent transactions.
Choosing a Property Management Software
Selecting the right property management software for your multifamily building is important for both business profitability and resident experience. Ultimately, it should improve the management process by simplifying the tasks associated with a property.
The best property management software should be able to support:
- Rent collection and online payment
- Application process
- Screening process
- Signing and renewing leases
- Maintenance requests
- Communication with tenants
- Financial planning and tracking
It’s also important to look out for the following platform features:
- Third party integrations and open API
- Technical support and training options
- Features that align with business goals
- Intuitive interface
- Data security and privacy
Unfortunately, there is no secret formula for choosing the best property management software. That comes from setting business goals that will be unique to you and your property. We can, however, help to detail the main benefits of a platform for managing your property to make it easier to determine those goals and choose the right software for you.
Benefits of Using Property Management Software
- Increase Rent Revenue: The right property management software allows property managers to stay on top of their upcoming vacancies and list them in time to improve occupancy rates and revenues. The software will also take care of the accounting, which gives an overview of portfolio performance and areas of improvement. With online rent payment and collection, managers can also send reminders to tenants and impose late payment penalties to improve rent recovery rate. Tenants can pay conveniently through an online portal or mobile app.
- Acquire and Retain Quality Tenants: Most property management software can also screen applicants for criminal record and credit score. Under this integrated platform, property managers can identify quality tenants that will not pose any risk of liability. Quality tenants can also be more frequently depended on to renew their lease. After acquiring quality tenants, property management software also contributes to their retention by providing an easy solution for residents to interact with the property. This includes easy online payments or having the ability to quickly schedule a maintenance request.
- Improve Efficiency: According to Buildium, over 34% of property managers listed efficiency as a top priority in 2021. Property management software improves efficiency for almost every business activity including leasing, rent collection, repairs and maintenance, accounting, advertising, evictions, and financial reporting. Running reports to collect building data also provides insight into where a property might have gaps and efficiencies can be improved.
- Increase Profitability: Data analytics and report generation features give property management insight to making business decisions. Depending on data takes the guesswork out of decision making and gives property managers or owners confidence that any given change will generate a better return.
- Streamline Communication: Property management software provides a comprehensive means of communication between managers and residents. This goes both ways. Managers can communicate directly with tenants regarding specific issues or they can send out a mass communication about a building update or alert. Residents also have easy access to direct communication with management. Clear and open communication brings in more transparency and helps managers and HOAs build engaged resident communities.
- Enhance COVID Safety: Property managers are responsible for maintaining a safe and hygienic living space, which is particularly important during COVID. Property management software can be used to implement more stringent cleaning routines and reduce the need for direct interactions by facilitating business operations remotely. Cloud-based platforms that integrate with access control and visitor management systems can help enforce building capacity limits and create touchless and contactless interactions.