Including everything from collecting rent, and filling vacancies to posting classifieds and reviewing applications, the job of a property manager is a demanding one. With so many plates spinning it can be easy to wonder if there’s enough time in the day to give everything the attention it requires. Time management is a huge pain point of the job which has only been exacerbated by the constant uncertainty of the past year. 

In a fast-moving real estate market, it’s imperative that property managers, whether operating multifamily or single family homes, set themselves up for success by streamlining their workflows. Innovation, in the form of property management tools, is the key to removing manual processes and building scalable workflows for your growing team. 

There are a number of property management tools that claim to help boost your NOI, but which are right for your team? To help you decide, we’ve compiled a list of the top 8 property management tools of 2021.

The best Property Management Software for your business

When it comes to managing your time, few things can move the needle as much as property management software. These software solutions combine financial and property management information into one convenient database. The right property management software is really the ultimate property management tool for your team, regardless of your property types. Property management companies need the robust insight into, and control over leasing, marketing, tenant management, accounting and maintenance that these software solutions provide. 

While property management tools, like the ones we’ll get to below, are very helpful in your day-to-day, software solutions such as Yardi, Rentec Direct, Appfolio and others are absolutely key for real estate professionals. Seamlessly track online applications and lease agreements, while managing finances and work orders, all from one convenient online portal. Property management software is an all-in-one answer to so many of the pain points that come with rental management. 

With an eye towards removing as much manual process as possible a PMS is an invaluable tool to have at your disposal. The right property management platform can streamline lease management, save your team precious time, and boost your NOI like few other property management tools can. To help you cut through the noise, we’ve compiled the seven best rental property management software of 2021.

J Turner: Ratings Tracker

An image of a man, using a property management tool on his cell phone, and woman shaking hands, completing a deal.

A great property management tool to help boost occupancy, and guage renter satisfaction is J Turner: Ratings Tracker. The Ratings tracker helps you to understand and leverage your online reputation. Begin the process of understanding how renters feel about your rental property by getting your ORA™ score. The ORA™ model compiles and analyzes online reviews from across multiple platforms, giving you a 360 degree view of renter sentiment.

Properties with a high ORA™ score convert 15% more leases than those with lower ORA™ scores. In fact, many renters are less likely to even visit a property with a poor online reputation with 71% of prospects choosing to visit properties with high ORA™ scores. J Turner: Ratings Tracker is a property management tool that gives you insight into what you’re doing well, where you can improve, and where you stand amongst the competition in a crowded real estate market.

Key features include:

  • Comprehensive tracking: This includes a comprehensive dashboard so you can learn about and manage your reputation at each property.

  • Comparative benchmarks: See how you stack up against your competitors both local and on a national scale, and what they’re doing to get ahead.

  • Robust review management: This includes e-mail alerts for new reviews compiled into one convenient location.

Cozy + Apartments.com

Founded in 2012, Cozy was built with the aim of giving landlords and property managers intuitive, easy-to-use tools to run their properties as cheaply and efficiently as possible. Providing smart property management tools to remove manual processes from leasing, Cozy makes it easier for properties to succeed at little to no cost. 

Partnering with Apartments.com has only broadened the resources that Cozy can provide to property managers. Cozy + Apartments.com is your database for the leasing process from beginning to end, with features to help you list vacancies and screen rental applications with a comprehensive report of credit, rental, and eviction history. With management features like online lease signing, and the option for automatically recurring rent collection, Cozy streamlines the leasing process and allows you to focus your time elsewhere. 

Key features include:

  • Featured listings: This includes 3D and video tours to get renters in the door without needing to set up a visit.

  • Digital rent payment: This includes email reminders, sent to renters when their payment date is coming up. Cozy helps renters stay on top of their rent, with easy online payments, to help you collect on time.

  • Electronic lease signing: This includes lease customization with the help of industry experts and lawyers in each state to make sure you’re compliant with local restrictions.

  • Comprehensive tenant screening: Includes a clear picture of each applicant’s rental, criminal, and credit history in one convenient tenant portal. 

  • Easy-to-use mobile app: Keep control of the leasing process all from your mobile device. Screen tenants, list vacancies and collect monthly rent all from the convenience of your phone.

Postengine by Rooof

Postengine by Rooof streamlines the process of managing your classifieds regardless of your number of units. Postengine helps you create and post the best possible ads to help fill your vacancies quickly. This tool saves your team the time and hassle of manually posting and scheduling ads for vacancies. With the ease of clicking a button, Postengine automates the daily scheduling, posting and renewal of classified ads. Postengine lets your team work smarter, even automatically generating ads based on the content and data on your website.

Eliminating time consuming manual steps is the name of the game for time management. Property managers know the importance of automating processes in order to keep up in a fast paced real estate market, and Postengine is a property management tool that does exactly that. This smart, cost-effective property management tool can help you reach more renters and boost your occupancy.

Key features include:

  • Automated ad creation: Postengine will review the content of your website, and will automatically generate a classified ad with the click of a button. 

  • Seamless ad renewal: A new classified ad will start near the top of many listing sites, but as time passes, it will begin to fall further down the page, meaning fewer prospects will get to see it. Postengine solves this issue with automation, seamlessly renewing your ads without any manual intervention.

  • Smart price updating: This includes Postengine integrating with your Revenue Management system to update your ads to reflect any pricing updates.

  • Intuitive traffic reporting: Postengine tracks the performance of your classifieds in your Google analytics dashboard. Including a tracking link in each of your classified ads, helps drive users back to your property website.

Domo

Data is at the heart of just about any improvements growing companies need to make. In order to rationalize and advocate for a change in your processes, you need to have the data to back it up. Whether that data is born from viewing your internal trends or comes from reviewing the strategies of your competitors, data is the name of the game. That said, constantly updating spreadsheets by hand is a huge time-suck for you and your team, and that’s where property management tools like Domo come in. 

Domo is a cloud integrated business intelligence tool that centralizes all of your data in one convenient location. From financial reports to maintenance requests, conversion rate, and even competitor data points, you’ll no longer need to juggle multiple spreadsheets to get a clear picture of your business. Maintain control of your data, with fast and easy queries, and automated data collection.

Key features include:

  • Seamless cloud connection: Ditch those high-touch and costly engineering projects and connect your data with Domo. With more than 1,000 existing cloud connectors, there are seemingly endless ways to connect all of your data points.

  • Smart file upload: Includes the property management tool pulling information from excel spreadsheets as well as other file formats into one convenient location. No more need for manually transferring data from one place to another.

  • Convenient interface: Includes seamless connectivity from your laptop, desktop or mobile device. Streamline your workflows by accessing your data from anywhere you need to.

Rhino

We’re admittedly biased, but Rhino is a great property management tool for owners of any size because it removes the hassle of the security deposit. Replacing traditional cash deposits with smart affordable insurance, Rhino helps streamline your leasing process. Easily file claims for damages and missed rent payments, so you’ll no longer have to worry about collecting deposits and holding them in escrow. 

This property management tool was built to be a win-win for property owners as well as renters, Rhino saves time and streamlines workflows, at no cost to the property manager. Cash security deposits are a roadblock to efficient lease conversion, with many renters struggling to come up with enough cash to move-in. With Rhino, renters pay a much more affordable monthly fee, saving them cash for move-in.

By offering coverage on a rental unit that matches a cash deposit, property managers get the security they require to protect their units, but at a much lower cost to the renter than a cash deposit. Now in more than 1.5 million homes nationwide, renters and property owners are seeing the benefits of this property management tool. Property owners see faster lease conversion and a boost in renter satisfaction, with roughly 90% of renters choosing to use Rhino when offered it by their property managers.

Key features include:

  • Customized on-boarding and training: Seamlessly on-board your properties to Rhino’s platform to start replacing cash deposits. The process takes less than one week on average and sets each property owner up for success.

  • Flexible coverage: Coverage is customizable for each renter. Choose the coverage amount that you require, based on each renter’s specific risk-profile.

  • Fast and easy claims reimbursement: File claims during the lease or for 60 days after the lease ends. Rhino’s in-house claims team reviews each claim submitted and reimburses valid claims in about 4 days on average.

  • Best-in-class customer support: Available seven days a week on a variety of channels including phone, email, and chat, you and your renters can always get in touch when you need to. 

Get in touch with an expert and learn more today.

Thumbtack

An image of a woman using her laptop to lease an apartment.

With the amount of tasks and questions that property managers have to juggle, it can be difficult to remember that they can’t do everything themselves. An important aspect of managing a rental property is upkeep, things need to work the way you and your renters expect them to. However, owners or small residential properties may not have the internal staff to handle important maintenance requests, which is where this property management tool comes in.

Thumbtack is a tool that helps you search for local professionals and small businesses to help you complete any work orders at your properties. Maintenance management is an important and time-consuming aspect of the job. While maintenance requests pile up, you need a way to find the professional who is best for you.  Able to connect you with anyone from plumbers and painters to exterminators and roofers, Thumbtack makes the search easy.

Thumbtack streamlines the process of hiring a vendor and removes a lot of the question marks that naturally muddle the process. By simply searching for the vendor you need, you’re already a third of the way there. This property management tool allows you to seamlessly chat with prospective vendors to decide who’s the best fit to resolve your maintenance requests. Finding and hiring the right vendor is as easy as a few clicks. Helps you hire the right vendor with none of the guesswork that usually comes with hiring a local professional.

Key features include:

  • Smart and easy background checks: In order to list their services on Thumbtack, many vendors are required to submit to a routine background check. This is a crucial step in building trust between vendors and customers and professional credibility.

  • Comprehensive review system: Compiles reviews from facebook, google and Thumbtack to give a clear picture of what it’s like to work with a specific vendor. 

  • Intuitive location tracking: Thumbtack connects you with professionals from any state in the country, but doesn’t force you to find a proverbial needle in a haystack. By tracking your location, Thumbtack sets you up to meet professionals who are closest to you.

Podium

Property managers know how important efficient communication is for their bottom line. Communicating with the sheer number of people that a property manager is required to can quickly get overwhelming, and missing an email or message could cost time and money. Whether keeping in touch with vendors, colleagues, or renters their attention is constantly being pulled by multiple people across numerous channels. With more ways to stay in touch than ever before, it’s crucial for property managers to make sure they don’t miss a single message. Podium is a property management tool with a robust line of products and additional features that ease both internal and external communication. 

Podium centralizes all of your interactions in one convenient location. Podium’s smart inbox product compiles communications across all of your platforms, so you’ll no longer need to switch from email to facebook, then to text to stay up to date. Instead, with this property management tool, you can reply to your colleagues, follow-up with a lead, read reviews, monitor work orders, and reply to texts from renters all without leaving the same tab. Podium streamlines your communications so you have more time to devote your attention to boosting your bottom line.

Key features include:

  • Smart, comprehensive inbox management: Keeps you up to date with all of your notifications in one convenient location regardless of where it originated. No more switching from one platform to another to stay in touch. Your smart inbox will automatically update in real-time with any new emails, reviews, texts or messages.

  • Efficient web chat functionality: Speak directly with visitors to your site over their preferred method of communication, text. Allows customers to start the conversation with you on their own time and gives your leads a more convenient way to get in touch with you.

  • Centralized team chat: Align with your teammates with one easy-to-use product. Gives colleagues a uniform method of communication, instead of using multiple channels of communication.

  • Intuitive video chat: Give customers and colleagues a personal touch with a face-to-face interaction. Seamlessly transfer a conversation from text to video chat to answer questions and align as efficiently as possible.

Ultimately, new software and property management solutions, like the tools listed above, can be a silver bullet of sorts for property managers trying to juggle all of their tasks. Property managers have so many responsibilities, yet, seemingly, not enough hours in the day to tackle it all. While continuing to conform to the manual processes you’ve used in the past is a slippery slope, the right property management tools can boost your business and improve NOI. Property management tools like Rhino can be difference makers for you, your team, and your bottom line, which is, after all, the bottom line.

Headshot of Conor Baker, copywriter at Rhino.
Conor Baker

Conor Baker is a copywriter at Rhino who is passionate about progress. His hobbies include dismantling security deposits, blindfolded.