I’m new to the rental business. I’m using apartments.com to accept applications and rent. I’ve had a few tenants and potential tenants complain about the difficulty to signup, and sign the lease. Have you guys had any issues? Is the service much different since Cozy merged with apartments.com? What would be a better service?
I did find it a bit cumbersome to sign up with Apartments.com and it was somewhat challenging for my tenants too. There's always that initial stress that they will sign up on time for the first recurring payment, but I've ultimately never had an issue. Once adjusted, I found it as good as Cozy and haven't tried any other services, because it's hard to beat free!
Once Apartments.com is going the money comes without much thought. i check on the first to see that the transaction has initiated then again on the eighth to see that the money deposited. Otherwise, it's like a good dog and walks itself.
You might consider handling the lease portion yourself to alleviate that portion of the stress. I have my own lease and handle it with a paper document, that way I can walk the tenants through the property on move-in day with a move-in checklist and a short tone-setting discussion of what I expect from anyone who rents one of my properties. Thus far, doing this seems to have helped me avoid any misunderstanding and poor behaviors. Best of luck to you!
Your goal is to get a tenant who can navigate an online portal for maintenance request and paying rent online. If they cannot get through the first step that might be an issue in the future. There are a lot of platforms that will do this for you. Yes you have to pay but few dollars per transaction is a small price to pay for the ease and convenience
@Joe Frank I’m a huge fan of Turbo Tenant to market properties, manage leads, screen tenants and lease up. It’s free for landlords. For marketing, you enter property details and photos and they submit to all big sites including FB marketplace, Zillow, Realtor, and Zumper. There’s also an easy way to import the listing to craigslist. There are lots of helpful tools like a customizable pre-screening questionnaire, text/email interface to communicate with leads, and a database to keep leads organized. For tenant screening, applicants complete an online application, upload dox to verify their identity and pay a $45 screening fee (This is how turbo tenant monetizes). Leases are simple to upload and get signed electronically for $9 fee for DocuSign. A very simple platform that saves time, keeps leads organized and makes it easy to lease up.
I've found apartments.com to be a bit clunky, especially on the listing side. There's so many hoops you have to jump through and some of their filters, captchas, and etc. are crazy.
Cozy is WAY easier to list an apartment on (with the exception of the media limitations). I hope apartments.com takes a note or two during the merger process.
I'm in the process of transitioning out of Cozy due to the limited functionality and my dissatisfaction with the apartments.com merger. Cozy was "good enough" for awhile but the lack of a mobile app and multiple tenants having issues setting up payments, etc caused me to look elsewhere. I do like the built in leasing that apartments offers over the OG Cozy site, but I don't really want to pigeon hole myself into the apartments.com brand (or Zillow, or any other of the type) so I'm starting to use rent redi.
@Jody Sperling cumbersome to say the least.