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2 Must-Have (Free) Smartphone Apps To Use out in the Field

by Ken Corsini on December 5, 2013 · 9 comments

  
App

There are 10 individuals that comprise my core team here in Atlanta.

Of the 10, I’ve got a general manager who spends a lot of time in the field as well as a project manager who spends a TON of time in the field.

Regardless of what you call them, most real estate businesses have an individual(s) who spends a good portion of their time inspecting properties and/or interfacing with buyers, sellers, tenants, etc.

In our business, the project manager spends a good portion of his time screening new potential purchases and writing up detailed rehab estimates. On an average day, he will easily drive 100 miles around Metro Atlanta looking at properties we get under contract and managing rehabs currently underway.

With the enormous amount of competition in our market, it’s critical that we move quickly when trying to get properties under contract. As such, we’ve had to find tools and develop systems that enable us to make quick buying decisions throughout the course of each day. Here are 2 of the apps that we’ve adapted into our business that allow us analyze properties extremely efficiently:

Dropbox:

Screen Shot 2013-11-25 at 9.39.19 AMI realize that most people know about Dropbox and probably wouldn’t consider this a “must-have” tool. However, in our business it’s been a phenomenal way to exchange real time information from the field to our office. Our project manager has the dropbox app installed on his iPhone. When he gets to a property, he immediately begins taking pictures of the neighborhood, the property and any potential problem areas or issues that may be deal breakers for us. These pictures are then instantaneously uploaded into a specific property folder within dropbox so that we have access to the pictures in our office within minutes and can evaluate the property ourselves. This functionality has enabled us to make very quick buying decisions without blindly accepting a verbal description of the property over the phone … as was the case just a few years ago.

Genius Scan:

Screen Shot 2013-11-25 at 9.39.37 AMGenius Scan is a great tool that enables you to take a picture of a document with your iPhone and convert it to a pdf. In most cases, the pdf document is as clean and legible as if it had been scanned in an office. In our business, we use this tool to scan a written scope of work. We have a one page template that our project manager uses to estimate the repairs on a given property. Once the estimate is written up, he uses genius scan to convert it to a pdf … and similar to the pictures, the estimate also gets loaded into a specific property folder on dropbox so that we have immediate access to this information as well.

The great thing about Genius Scan and Dropbox is the fact that you can use them for any number of purposes. Perhaps you are writing up contracts in the field and want to instantly file them in electronic format – these tools can help you do that. And I’m not necessarily saying these are the best two apps for this functionality … there are other apps like Google Drive for cloud storage or Turbo Scan, Scanner Pro and Prizmo for scanning documents on your phone. Perhaps you may find one of these other apps more user friendly.

The bottom line is that these types of apps can make your business so much more efficient if you take the time to implement them. Whether you are taking pictures, writing up work estimates, scanning signed contracts, etc., having the ability to immediately share and store this information can give you a great leg up in your business.

Related:6 Killer iOS Apps That Will Revolutionize Your Investing Business

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{ 9 comments… read them below or add one }

Lisa December 5, 2013 at 3:47 pm

Another great article! Keep up the good work Ken. I knew about these product, but hearing your real time benefits just pushed me to get it faster. I love your articles!

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Ken Corsini December 6, 2013 at 2:58 pm

Thanks Lisa!

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Penny Isabel December 6, 2013 at 10:29 am

Thanks Ken! I hadn’t heard of Genius Scan – I’m thinking this is going to be very useful!

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Ken Corsini December 6, 2013 at 2:58 pm

I absolutely love Genius Scan … we use it all day, every day.

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Bilgefisher December 6, 2013 at 1:09 pm

Ken,

Thank you. I have been looking for something similar to genius for scanning receipts.

Jason

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Ken Corsini December 6, 2013 at 2:59 pm

Works like a champ – best of luck!

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Nick Casteel, MBA December 6, 2013 at 2:49 pm

I absolutely hate it when I get a document that is not in pdf format, so I truly don’t like to be the guy that other people hate. Genius scan allows me to quickly convert docs on the road in pdf which makes me look good, quick and professional which helps my clients offers look better.

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Ken Corsini December 6, 2013 at 2:59 pm

Agreed, having your documents in pdf definitely makes life simpler AND can make you look more professional as well.

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Tom Sylvester December 7, 2013 at 3:52 pm

Ken – Agreed 100% on Dropbox (or any other cloud storage such as Google Drive). In this day and age, with technology and the internet, there is no reason to have to wait for people or items to physically move somewhere. A cell phone (or tablet) remove that issue. Like you said, snap a few pics and share them in cloud storage so that anyone can access them on any device. Have some paperwork, snap a picture and also store it in the cloud.

Another useful app (specifically on this topic) is Docusign Ink. What it does is allow you to do is create an electronic version of your signature, import a document (ex. take a picture, dropbox, google drive), add your signature to the document and send it. So much faster and easier than dealing with all the paperwork.

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