Sparkrent is closing?

36 Replies

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I just got an email that sparkrent is closing its website to offer a "better experience" thru quick books. What are you currently using for online rent collection? And what do you like about it?

Intuit Payment Network is a natural progression. The password is the same for IPN and SparkRent... they are both Intuit companies. 

Sparkrent was the best, got my rent the next day.  Sorry to see it go.

I signed up with cozy.  I don't see a late fee service though.  

Hi folks, I'm Gino, the CEO of Cozy. It's interesting to us to hear about people wanting late fees. We process millions each month, and over 99% of payments are on time. If a product works well, late fees become a thing of the past.

So that leads me to ask: could you clarify why you want to charge late fees?

Thanks!

Hey Gino,

We are asking for automatic late fee reminders to tenants and automatic invoicing of said late fee to tenant. It was a nifty feature of spark rent. 

@Josh Jacobsen  

I have been using SparkRent for a year now and I was very discouraged with the email today about the termination of the service.

I have been looking around for options as well.  Cozy looks interesting, but free?  I can't see that lasting.

I'm also considering Buildium since I have nine properties.

@Gino Zahnd  If you transact a million payments a month and 99% are on time, then that means...

1,000,0000 * .01 = 10,000 payments are late each month of the ones you transact

@Jeff Arndt  is right, that feature was great with SparkRent because it reminded people if they didn't pay on time there would be a fee automatically added on.

@Gino Zahnd  

Cozy looks really nice, but as stated, it would be great if you could specify a late fee and then if a renter pay late, it will charge the late fee. UNLESS....it's a recurring payment system so that it debits the renter on the 1st of the month without their interaction. Is this the case?

Edit: Check that. I read more and it is an automatic withdraw system. I can see why you're saying it doesn't need a place for late fees.

@Ryan Haase  

I don't think an automatic withdrawal system does you any good if the account you are withdrawing from doesn't have enough money in it at the time of withdrawal.

Originally posted by @Jake Johnson :

@Ryan Haase 

I don't think an automatic withdrawal system does you any good if the account you are withdrawing from doesn't have enough money in it at the time of withdrawal.

I agree. I currently use venmo, because not all of my rentals have responsible renters in them. If you are renting higher end units, this might be a great option.

I was extremely happy with Sparkrent and greatly disappointed that it is closing. We only have 3 properties at this point (1 which we just got done rehabbing), so I am trying to find a product that makes sense for a small player like ourselves.

I will check out Cozy. Does anyone else have any suggestions? At this point, it looks to me like Buildium would be overkill (and given only 3 units and collecting less than $2000 a month, all together) and the pricing doesn't seem to make sense for an operator of our size.

Thank you for any input.

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Its unfortunate that Sparkrent is no more. I was considering using the service a while ago, however I never bothered since I didn't have a large rental portfolio. 

Now that I'm about to add more rentals, I found out that Sparkrent is no longer. Such is life...

I was looking at Buildium but I know that they charge a good amount of user fees. 

Anyone here ever use TenantCloud (formerly Evaproperty)? If so, what are you thoughts on it?

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Originally posted by @Jake Johnson :

@Ryan Haase  

I don't think an automatic withdrawal system does you any good if the account you are withdrawing from doesn't have enough money in it at the time of withdrawal.

 Agreed.  What I liked about sparkrent was the email they sent out three days before rent was due with a link to make the payment.  My renter is constantly traveling so she uses her smart phone to pay rent.  

@ginozahnd will Cozy do something similar? 

Originally posted by @Adam Stanton :
Originally posted by @Jake Johnson:

@Ryan Haase  

I don't think an automatic withdrawal system does you any good if the account you are withdrawing from doesn't have enough money in it at the time of withdrawal.

 Agreed.  What I liked about sparkrent was the email they sent out three days before rent was due with a link to make the payment.  My renter is constantly traveling so she uses her smart phone to pay rent.  

@ginozahnd will Cozy do something similar? 

Hi Adam,

From what I can tell you want a monthly reminder sent to your tenant along with the ability for the tenant to submit a one-time payment, not to be required to use a recurring payment. With eRentPayment we offer both those options since we offer one-time or recurring payments along with our monthly and late reminder options that you set which day of the month they are sent out. We also offer an automatic Late Fee option if a one-time payment is submitted late or in the event a recurring payment doesn't clear and the tenant has to reprocess. If you have any other questions please let us know. Thank you.

Originally posted by @Rick S. :
Originally posted by @Adam Stanton:
Originally posted by @Jake Johnson:

@Ryan Haase 

I don't think an automatic withdrawal system does you any good if the account you are withdrawing from doesn't have enough money in it at the time of withdrawal.

 Agreed.  What I liked about sparkrent was the email they sent out three days before rent was due with a link to make the payment.  My renter is constantly traveling so she uses her smart phone to pay rent.  

@ginozahnd will Cozy do something similar? 

Hi Adam,

From what I can tell you want a monthly reminder sent to your tenant along with the ability for the tenant to submit a one-time payment, not to be required to use a recurring payment. With eRentPayment we offer both those options since we offer one-time or recurring payments along with our monthly and late reminder options that you set which day of the month they are sent out. We also offer an automatic Late Fee option if a one-time payment is submitted late or in the event a recurring payment doesn't clear and the tenant has to reprocess. If you have any other questions please let us know. Thank you.

 I believe that SparkRent was $1/transaction vs $2 or $3/transaction for eRentPayment. Not sure how big of a deal this is to people.

Late fees encourages tenants to pay on time.  Some tenants do pay late and they then pay the late fee automatically.  This is a very important feature.  

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@Ravi Dehar  

I only have ten tenants, so maybe I'm not the norm.  However, most of my tenants are weary of automatic withdrawals.  They liked having SparkRent remind them and they take action.  If I were you guys, then I would build Cozy so it could do it either way plus add the late fee option on there as well.  

@Gino Zahnd - I'm curious how you will insure your sustainability if you don't charge a fee. If my tenants are ok with automatic withdrawal then I think your website sounds great but I don't want to have to find a new one in 6 months....
Also I saw you have a roommate paying feature. How exactly does that work? What if only some of the roommates pay? Do you accept partial payments?

@Gino Zahnd  and @Ravi Dehar  : 

I've been using Sparkrent and thought it's been pretty great.  Sorry to see it go, but just checked out the Cozy site and... Wow!!  Looks super slick!  I'm excited to make the transition!  Was wondering… is there a way to perform a background check?  Love that credit check is available and bills applicants directly, but I also perform a background check on applicants.  Do you think you'd be able to link up with a background check co. for this functionality?  Thanks so much!

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@Emily Jacobsen Hi! I'm helping Gino out. That's a good question. Cozy makes it money, right now, on credit reports, which cost tenants $19.95 when a landlord requests one. Everything else is free for both landlords and tenants, and will remain so. We're building some additional premium products, like the ability for tenants to pay rent via credit card or landlords to store and sign leases digitally, that will come at a nominal fee (we built this product for independent landlords, so we're not here to gouge you). On top of that, we have a team of top-tier investors, like Google Ventures and Social+Capital Partnership, that are helping fund our growth. We're here to stay, and we're here to serve landlords just like you.


@Kimberly Gillock Thank you for the kind words! Gino used to head up design at Flickr and a few other companies, so a well-designed, easy-to-use service is definitely our goal. Your background checks question is one we've been hearing more and more lately and, rest assured, we're working on it. It isn't quite ready yet, but our CTO and Co-Founder posted what we've found so far on our blog: https://cozy.co/eviction-criminal-background-check...

The short version is: we're building it! But we want it to be as reliable, intuitive, and revolutionary as the rest of our service, so we're taking a little time to do it right. 

Thank you both!

Ravi

Auto draft could and will be problematic to serve the various types of landlords and tenants.  That's a flawed business model that won't last. 

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