I have been trying to research the least expensive way to keep my records until I build my real estate rentals more. I tried to set up quickbooks online, but without paying $720 a year for the ability to do class tracking, it seems like it wouldn't be as beneficial.
I know there are other tools out there more geared towards real estate like xero, etc, but I'm still trying to avoid paying so much every month.
Has anybody used realtyzam or rentalhero (rentalhero.io) they seem to be linked? It seems like it could be geared towards my needs, but I see no mention of it anywhere. Maybe it's just a small company.
Hey @Eric Chappell
You've absolutely nailed it - "class tracking" or the equivalent somewhere else is usually a top dollar feature.
I haven't used rentalhero (yet, thanks for the tip!) but generally - new accounting and property tracking softwares fall short in one of two places:
1) they don't actually generate financial statements that a CPA or Lender will approve, or
2) They can, but the learning curve is so steep or convoluted it's impossible for you to get help if/when you need it (I imagine this is why this thread is a little slow right now)
Have you asked your accountant what they think will work best? Select accounting and bookkeeping firms have access to software like Quickbooks Online at a discount, and a few of them even pass those discounts along directly to the customer!
Food for thought. Good luck!
@Eric Chappell - just started a trial to check on rentalhero and it's not a complete accounting system. It does not generate the Balance Sheet. This is essential for lenders or CPA.
Thank you both for your responses. I started a trial as well, but haven't had much time to tinker around yet.
What is your budget for accounting for the year?
Well, for software, I would like to stay under $300. Now that I've had a bit of time to put in some info into rental hero, under the "profit and loss" section, you can save/print a PDF with details. This did formulate a table of income and expenses and I had the option to include receipts I uploaded for those income and expense transactions. I would imagine this would be close to a balance sheet.
I'm not sure what my CPA would want, but that looked pretty inclusive since I categorized my transactions into their respective categories, ie property management, and repairs.
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@Eric Chappell Income Statement is nowhere close to a Balance Sheet. Only thing the Income Statement info would be the retained earnings on the Balance Sheet. Balance Sheet shows all Assets, Liability, and Equity.
If you don't have many properties and are comfortable using excel; I would use excel.
Most banks allow you to export the full year of activity to excel.
If you are not comfortable using excel - you should reach out to your accountant if he/she has a bookkeeper on staff and how much it would cost them to do your books.
It may be cheaper overall for your accountant to do it if you just need the books to be done once a year instead of on a monthly basis.
Furthermore, this saves you from having to pay for the software.
I wouldn't need it done on a monthly, but I am just trying to get organized in general. I have thought about a bookkeeper, but then I feel like it would end up costing just as much as buying the more expensive tax software.
I have 3 properties now. I had generally been just saving my expenses in google sheets to further organize later and receipts in google drive since I can more easily access and upload all my paperwork from my phone and access my drive from anywhere.
I have and use excel for some things, but I generally would prefer something more geared towards real estate. I have done a lot more on rental hero now and I'm finding it very easy to use and it is very organized. We'll see.
I have been putting my data into this rental hero software for a while now and I absolutely love it. I have a business google pixelbook, which doesn't use windows or mac os, so it is important that I have the ability to use some form of online access (remote login to pc or mac...or actual online software).
I use google drive for all my scanned business files, so I can easily upload my receipts for transactions/expenses. You can print out a CPA sheet that can break down every transaction (with receipts if you want - so you just upload it once when you're entering data and you're solid)
You have the equivalent of class tracking because you can enter each rental or unit separately. You have the option of a single family unit or multifamily, etc when starting a new rental. You can add notes to any transaction also, so later if you want to search for a vendor (you gas company, insurance) you can search by the actual vendor or something you put in your notes. It has a great search option.
I like how visually organized the software is. You get a pie chart of income and expense breakdowns and then you can open up the bullets to the expense or income categories and it is further broken down as far as you have decided to enter categories for your data.
Best I found is, this was a 30 day free trial and I just looked to check, it is currently listed as $119 a year. That's pretty nice. It blows quickbooks out of the water with ease of use and I can do the class tracking that the basic $20 a month quickbooks was lacking.
There's a phone app also, I just added it to my phone, so I'm not sure how much I will use it yet other than for reference as opposed to opening the website for details. I like to use my computer to upload and organize my receipts typically, but that is because I typically have "scanned" receipts to my google drive from my phone camera. I will still do that for keeping my records straight, but I'll try to work with the app a bit and see how easy it is to pull receipts etc.
I thought an update was warranted because I really like the software and the PRICE.
I just finished my free trial with Rental Hero and liked it so much I paid for the annual subscription. It is simple to use and was just what I needed to keep track of my 5 properties (10 units). Maybe in the future they will add the ability to create a balance sheet which could be beneficial.
Their customer service is very receptive. I asked for an option and they added it. I got an email to let me know they updated the software. Try to email them with what you want.
My fiance and I started using rental hero once we acquired our second property. It's pretty simple to use and gives you an overall picture of your situation, along with individual breakdowns. For people who are not super accounting-savvy like us, I would definitely recommend it.
I just signed up for the free trial. I had been using Stessa, which I really loved, but it is buggy and the banking connection to Chase was continually breaking, which I needed to re-connect, but when I did that I had to go through 200+ transactions and re-allocate the expenses. This happened multiple times.... so I'm done with them.
Hoping Rental Hero does the trick!
@Eric Chappell can confirm. I just upgraded from the free trial to full sub of rentalhero.io to manage 7 properties with room to grow. No more excel to help scale!
Have being using Rental Hero for a year now and I absolutely love it. My CPA had no issues using the Info from there to do my taxes. Highly recommended
@Eric Chappell this software does seem pretty cool. I just started using it based on this thread. Wondering how you are handling reserves?
I would also highly recommend Rentalhero, being using it for a year now and I absolutely love it so does my CPA
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