We've heard great things about Buildium but I want to know who actually uses it for the properties they manage. I'm currently utilizing the free trial to become familiar with the tool. How has Buildium helped you become success in managing your properties? (Property Management Systems should be it's own Topic).
Here's my pitch on software, apps, and other tools. Don't buy them just to look professional. Don't buy them because they are cheap or because someone suggested them. They should only be purchased when they can solve an identified problem.
I started using Buildium in 2010 and used it for about three years. I had 115 rentals and needed something to handle the accounting, accept online payments, provide tenant screening, and help me track maintenance. Buildium did an excellent job in every aspect.
As I grew, i discovered there were certain limitations with Buildium that were difficult to overcome. First, I still had to use separate spreadsheets to track particular data points because Buildium didn't have the data fields I needed. Second, owner payments were taking too many steps to process which was creating a lot of work for my staff. So I investigated software systems that could fix those problems and settled on Propertyware, which I've been with for six years.
I recommend you sit down with a pen and paper, think through all of your processes, and identify the problem areas. Then find software that solves those problems.
I see a lot of new investors with fewer than 10 units asking about the best software and my response is for them to use a simple spreadsheet or a free software like TenantCloud or Cozy. It's better to learn what you have until you gain some experience and enough rentals to justify paying for a system.
@Nathan G. Excellent advice... I was going to add my .02 but there’s nothing more to say.
@Nathan G. Thank you so much for your suggestions! I know my organization skills are not the best but I must move on being as organized as possible. Disappointed to know about the lack of spreadsheet details but I might be able to find my way around that for now.