Property Management Software for Small Landlords

Posted on:
October 5, 2021
5 MIN READ

Technology has changed everything about business and how they are run and the housing industry is no exception. We are in the digital age where potential tenants and renters use online listings to find a home for themselves, but that is not the only way technology is changing the real estate game. Property management software for small landlords is the modern way to run a property management business.

This property management software for small landlords will automate important tasks related to accounting, leasing, tenant management, managing maintenance requests, and marketing your properties. The best property management software for small landlords reduces costs and streamlines operations. Some of the best property management software for small landlords only focus on streamlining communications between landlords and tenants.

Without a good property management software for small landlords, you put in a lot more time managing properties which requires more manual effort, overall wasting hours that could easily be saved for growing the company.

Finding the best property management software for your company and its unique needs can be a daunting and time-consuming task especially if you have no idea know where to start. Fortunately, we have already done the research for you.

best property management software

We have listed some of the best property management software for small landlords:  

What is Landlord Software?

To begin, let's discuss the wonder that is landlord software. Here is everything that you can expect help with to ease your burden as a landlord.

  • Responding to renter inquiries
  • Screening tenants and booking showings
  • Responding to maintenance requests
  • Scheduling property inspections and maintaining its records
  • Facilitating online rental payments
  • Keeping track of all expenses pertaining to the property
  • Generating accurate monthly and annual financial statements

How It Works and What Can You Expect to Gain From It?

While landlords should definitely invest in property management software to lessen their own burdens, it also worth the investment to attract quality tenants. Tenants now expect some level of technology to be involved in the leasing process. Not only does this reflect well on the property to have updated systems but landlords can hope to charge premium on rent should they choose to. Of course this means that landlords must also provide the services to justify the higher rent. According to research, you can expect to charge a premium of 18.3% for a highly amenitized building.

Tenant expectations nowadays include quick responses, paying rent online, access to a resident's portal that allows them to submit maintenance requests and track their progress. With mostly millennials and Gen Zs entering the market, there is a huge rise in demand for electronic leasing, from virtual showings to online lease agreements.

Landlord software is generally available in two forms; as a software app to be downloaded on your desktop or as a webapp, to be accessed on your browser via internet. Some software companies have made their services available via a smartphone app too, enabling landlords to manage their properties with just a click on their phone.

Here are some examples of some software systems that would serve the needs of a small landlord well.

Property Management Software 1: LetHub

LetHub provides an AI Leasing Platform to landlords and rental property managers. Their intelligent Leasing Assistant, River, responds to renter inquiries, pre-screens prospective tenants, and books tours, saving up to 75% of your time and your leasing team’s time. LetHub aims to help landlords and property managers grow their portfolio by automating communication between prospective renters and leasing agents.

This is the best property management software solution for small landlords automating time consuming tasks with AI while maintaining a human touch. You can manage your leasing team, listings, inquiries and more all in one place. You can generate and schedule property reports for owners and your team in seconds.  

best property management software

Features

  1. Calendar sync feature
  2. AI leasing assistant that responds to renter inquiries 24/7
  3. Customizable pre-screening
  4. Generate property report
  5. Integrate LetHub with your property management software
  6. Landlords can set their own availability and connect their own calendar.

Price

  • You can pay based on your portfolio, the monthly plan costs $1/unit and $0.85/unit for the annual plan
  • You can also pay as you go

best property management software

Property Management Software 2: Cozy  (4.2 stars / 20 reviews)

This is one of the best property management software for small landlords that can help list properties, screen potential tenants, and receive rental payments on one single dashboard. Cozy also partnered with Apartments.com in 2018, to provide small landlords with a property management software that includes the latest online rental management tools and tenant screening reports.

What makes Cozy a one of the best free property management software for small landlords is that it has customized listings which helps available properties stand out with a photo gallery, lease terms, amenities, and pet policies. All the listings on Cozy are syndicated on Doorsteps.com and Realtor.com reaching more relevant and qualified tenants faster.  

Features

  1. Rental listings
  2. Online renter applications
  3. Screening reports
  4. Online customizable lease agreements
  5. Rent payments
  6. Expenses and maintenance management

Price

  • Free for landlords, but tenants have to pay for features like tenant screening reports and credit card payments.
  • Renters insurance for tenants costs $20 per month.

best property management software

Property Management Software 3: Stessa (5 stars / 1300 reviews)

Stessa’s main goal as one of the best free property management software for small landlords is to help both landlords and investors by making rental property finances simple by maximizing profits with the help of smart money management, automated income, and expense tracking, and customized reporting. This is the best property management software for landlords that can surely help to maximize the performance of their rental properties.

This free property management software for small landlords also has an app on both iOS and Android which makes it incredibly easy to track expenses on the go so that no deductions get overlooked.

Features

  1. Rental performance tracking
  2. Income and expense management
  3. Customized financial reporting and tax accounting

Price

This property management software for small landlords is completely free to use and includes many features that help the leasing process go smoother and faster. Property management software Stessa does offer optional premium services for a fee, such as assisting with rent analysis, mortgage financing, and market research.

best property management software

Property Management Software 4: Rentec Direct (4.6 stars / 179 reviews)

Rentec Direct is one of the best software for property management for small landlords that focuses on helping out landlords and property managers with small portfolios. This property management software is best for small private landlords, property managers handling between 1 to 5000 properties and self-managed HOAs.

As a landlord with 10 properties or less Rentec Direct provides you with the option to choose a free software version, while this property management software and tenant screening services can also be utilized by owners with up to 5,000 units.

Features

  1. Property management accounting
  2. Work order management system
  3. Tenant screening
  4. Renter lead management system
  5. Owner's portal

Price

  • Rentec Pro for landlords - $35 per month
  • Rentec PM for property managers - $40 per month
  • Tenant screening - $7 to $15 per package

best property management software

Property Management Software 5: TurboTenant (4.8 stars / 49 reviews)

Turbo Tenant is the best property management software choice for small landlords, it has a pricing model that is absolutely free for landlords and puts all of its costs on the tenants, perhaps making it the best free option for landlords.

While many property management software's for small landlords provide a free trial, it is usually limited to a specific number of units or a limited period of time. However, that is not the case with TurboTenant’s property management software, which is completely free no matter the number of units you manage. This is the best free property management software for landlords is also very easy to use with a simple interface and setup.

Features

  1. Managing tenant applications
  2. Screening tenants online
  3. Create dedicated listing pages
  4. Send bulk tenant messages from a single inbox
  5. Integrates with Craigslist, Facebook, Realtor.com, Rent.com, Apartments.com, and other rental listing sites

Price

  • Free to use as a landlord
  • For this property management software tenants have to pay a fee of somewhere between $35 to $45 for application and screening
  • They can also purchase renters insurance for a monthly fee starting as low as $8.

best property management software

Property Management Software 6: TenantCloud (4.1 stars / 187 reviews)

Tenant Cloud is a property management software best for small landlords who want to manage their own properties. Including those landlords as well who own many investment properties but do not want to hire a property management company.  

TenantCloud is the best choice because it is one of the most secure property management software for small landlords that prioritizes privacy. This property management software may be exactly what small landlords searching for a simple and easy free property management software solution are looking for. From online rental applications to tenant screening and maintenance requests, Tenant Cloud has everything you need to manage properties on your own.

Features

  1. Online rental applications
  2. Tenant screening via TransUnion
  3. Maintenance requests
  4. Collect payments online
  5. Advertise vacant properties
  6. Store, sort, retrieve and summarize all financial data
  7. Detailed rental report and market trend data
  8. Tenant insurance
  9. Synchronization with QuickBooks online

Price

  • This property management software which includes a free Basic plan for up to 75 units
  • Standard $9 per month plan for up to 150 units
  • Advanced plan priced at $35 per month

best property management software

Property Management Software 7: SimplifyEm (4 stars / 119 reviews)

SimplifyEm is a property management software aimed at small and mid-sized property managers and landlords. It offers the perfect balance of price and features, making it an amazing property management software for small landlords that need help managing a few properties and don’t like to pay the high cost of other software plans.

The property management software for small landlords offers many different features however it is the best property management software choice for a few properties because the costs can be as low as $20 per month when starting out with fewer than 10 properties.

Features

  1. Property accounting
  2. Tenant management
  3. Lease tracking
  4. Bank reconciliation
  5. Maintenance scheduling
  6. Vendor management

Price

  • SimplifyEm pricing starts at $25.00 as a flat rate, per month
  • Has a free trial
  • This property management software also has a free version
  • The more units you have the more expensive it is

best property management software

Property Management Software 8: Avail (4.6 stars / 208 reviews)

Avail is one of the best property management software for small landlords overall. Designed specifically for landlords with less than 10 units in mind, this is an intuitive property management software app that has some of the best features needed for each stage of the rental process - all online.

This free property management software lets small landlords customize options to tailor it to their specific needs.

Every time a new rental listing is published on Avail they’ll post it on various sites across the Internet to help you find tenants quicker. The best part about this property management software for small landlords is that it is absolutely free to use and there is no better comparison for a free best property management software for landlords. Even at a larger scale the paid version of this property management software highly affordable and offers many advanced features.

Features

  1. Advertise vacant units
  2. Request rental applications
  3. Credit reports
  4. Sign leases
  5. Collect rent
  6. Integration with other platforms
  7. Custom applications and leases
  8. Next-day rent payments

Price

  • This property management software is that it is absolutely free to use for as many properties as you need
  • The paid version of this property management software is also highly recommended which is just $5 per unit per month.

best property management software

Property Management Software 9: PropertyWare (3.7 stars / 235 reviews)

Propertyware provides a property management software aimed at single-family landlords and property managers with a portfolio of 250 homes or more. Even though this property management software for small landlords is designed for slightly larger portfolios, the software itself is very easy to use because the focus is on single-family homes.  

As a property management software it provides every service a landlord needs. This property management software is best suited for residential property management companies that require customization and a platform to match their business needs by simplifying processes and reporting

Features

  1. Online rent collection
  2. Accounting
  3. Maintenance requests
  4. Vacant property marketing with leasing agents
  5. Marketing with listing syndication
  6. Tenant screening
  7. Lead tracking and follow-up
  8. Portal for vendors

Price

  • This property management software has multiple pricing tiers with pricing starting at $1 per month per unit with a $250 monthly minimum
  • For additional features, there are $1.50 and $2 per unit per month plans with a $350 and $450 monthly minimum.

best property management software

Property Management Software 10: ManageCasa (3.9 stars / 4 reviews)

ManageCasa is an automated property management software platform for property managers, associations, and landlords. On their main platform, landlords can easily streamline move-ins, handle digital lease agreements and run all of their important financial reports and easily share them with rental owners.

This all-in-one tenant portal lets landlords collect payments directly through the application, getting rid of the hassle of bank visits with handwritten checks. And if you are unsure if this is the property management software for you there is a free trial that you can try.

Features

  1. Streamline move-ins
  2. Digital lease agreements
  3. Run important financial reports
  4. Share reports with rental owners

Price

  • ManageCasa pricing starts at $10.00 per feature, per month

best property management software

Property Management Software 11: AppFolio (4.6 stars / 1738 reviews)

AppFolio is an all-in-one property management software that is great for both small landlords and property managers. It is not the best property management software for smaller landlords but is a very popular choice amongst landlords with large rental portfolios. This software supports residential properties, commercial buildings, student housing, and community associations.

This property management software offers the best advanced features to control units remotely, and additional support and resources to grow your business and maximize its efficiency. While the per unit prices are cheap there is a catch, Appfolio has a minimum monthly fee of $250 which makes it best suitable for landlords and property managers with hundreds and thousands of units to manage.  

Features

  1. Email and Text Templates Plus
  2. Resident Portal
  3. Owner Portal
  4. Vendor Portal
  5. Document Management
  6. Surveys

Price

  • Only pay for the features you use and pricing is $1.25 per unit per month for residential
  • Pricing is $1.50 per unit per month for commercial
  • $0.80 per unit for HOA’s
  • $1.25 per unit for student housing
  • Appfolio has a minimum monthly fee of $250

best property management software

How to choose the best property management software as a landlord?

Property management software for small landlords is the solution to many problems, it helps you work more efficiently and inherently helps in growing your business. But there are many options to choose from so how do you know which property management software is the best fit for you?

Each property management software for landlords specializes in certain situations, from small single-home portfolios to much larger portfolios but it is really about finding the right property management software for your company.  

Each property management software has its own unique features that will falls into one of the three categories:

Property Management

  • A good property management software for small landlords should allow you to create multiple user accounts for remote access for each member of the team. Each leasing agent should be able to access the account and see their own schedule.
  • Part of property management is to share documents and reports, financial or otherwise, with other business partners and service providers. A property management software for small landlords should allow you to share any info with ease and convenience.
  • With a property management software for small landlords you should have the option to track repair and maintenance requests from tenants, along with having a record of past repairs. This is extremely important to maintain good communication between tenants, owners and property managers.
  • Maintaining a good relationship with your tenants is essential and a good property management software for small landlords would have features that help with this. And online owner dashboard is a great feature that allows landlords to communicate effectively with tenants as well as monitor property performance.

Marketing and Leasing

  • Tenant screening reports are essential to ensure high-quality tenants. A good screening report should include credit and background checks, rental history, and evictions.
  • A great property management software for small landlords should reduce hassle and streamline every process including online leasing documents and electronic signatures.
  • Rental application processing should be entirely online and tenant screening should be available with customization.
  • Property management software's should integrate with other high-traffic rental listing platforms to help market vacant properties to potential tenants.

Reporting and Accounting

  • Rent payment should be online and a property management software should connect to your bank account. Deposit rent payments directly into specified bank account.
  • A property management software for small landlords should allow tracking of income and expenses entirely online
  • With a property management software for small landlords you should be able to generate financial reports for not just your entire portfolio but also on an individual property basis.

It’s crucial to look at the features for not only what your portfolio looks like currently, but also for what you expect your business to eventually evolve into in the future. You need to pick a property management software that will be able to grow with you but also needs to be affordable while you are still a small business.  

The best property management software for small landlords is not always the one that is the biggest and most advertised, it may be the case that a big software company like that is not useful for smaller landlords and single-home portfolios so you need to choose carefully. There are hundreds of new property management software including a lot of startups and the best way to find what's perfect for you is by comparing them.

best property management software

In conclusion rental property management software is a great option that allows landlords and property managers with both small and large portfolios to manage their rental leasing processes. From lead generation to occupancy, payment, timely communication, and financial accounting and reporting. The many property management software for small landlords specialize in different aspects and niches. Some property management software are better for small portfolios of single-family homes whereas others are more suited for a large mixed commercial portfolio.

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