Maintenance, Property Management, Tenant Management

8 Reasons to Manage Rental Maintenance Requests Using Property Management Software

Rental Maintenance Requests

Inundated with rental maintenance requests? One of the most stressful parts of being a landlord is getting a midnight call or text about a repair that’s needed. Even when it isn’t urgent, there’s still the burden of carrying the knowledge that a problem that needs to be solved. On top of that anxiety is remembering the task and tracking the progress. Moreover, managing communication with tenants and service providers can be difficult when you may have phone messages, texts, emails, and handwritten notes.

Managing rental maintenance requests using property management software creates one portal where tenants and landlords alike can communicate and coordinate property repairs and upkeep, whether they be routine or an urgent problem. In this article, we discuss all of the ways using property management software with maintenance coordination features can help landlords streamline the process of rental property maintenance.

Managing Rental Maintenance Requests Using Property Management Software

With the right property management tool, rental property maintenance can become far more efficient for landlords. That’s because much of the work can be done electronically and remotely. Plus, you can keep all documents and records of rental maintenance requests in one place, which makes progress tracking and communication easy.

Here are some of the reasons you should use property management software to manage rental maintenance requests.

1. 24/7 Maintenance Coordination

Some property management tools like Hemlane give you access to a 24/7 repair coordinator that can handle your middle-of-the-night emergencies. The coordinator is responsible for diagnosing and troubleshooting rental maintenance requests, scheduling dispatch, and coordinating with your service professionals and renters. The best part is that the system dashboard still gives you full visibility and control of your units and maintenance projects.

Having a coordinator who initially diagnoses problems as they come in helps make sure that you dispatch the appropriate service provider. Avoiding emergency services and assigning the best vendor for the task help keep your maintenance costs down. Moreover, taking maintenance calls at all hours of the day and coordinating with renters and vendors saves the time and stress many independent landlords face.

internal link Also Read: Hemlane Overview: Next-Gen Property Management

2. Cost-Efficiency

Landlords have typically had to hire a property manager in order to delegate maintenance coordination and repair tasks. This person would then be responsible for answering calls for rental maintenance requests as well as advertising the rental property, finding and screening renters, scheduling showings, and more. Depending on the scope of services, the property manager would charge a fee that might cost a percentage of rent each month.  Generally, this fee is 8% to 12%, which takes a big chunk out of revenues.

Property management software makes it unnecessary for many landlords to hire a property manager because it makes tasks such as advertising, screening, rent collection, and maintenance management efficient and easy. Whether you want to use these tools to make your life easier, or pick one that takes most duties off your shoulders, property management software offers you huge savings over hiring a traditional property manager.

internal link Also Read: Manage Maintenance on Rental Property using Property Management Software

3. Communication

A property management platform makes it easier to communicate with all necessary parties. It puts all the messages between you and your tenant together in one place, where it is easy to reference. Often you can loop in your chosen service provider (such as a plumber, handyman, or electrician) so that you can share information and schedule visits without a lot of back and forth. Some tools also have a mobile app so you, your tenants, and your vendors can track progress on the go.

4. Photos and Videos

When it comes to communicating about repairs, every bit of information you have helps you sort out the problem most effectively. Many property management software tools allow users to share photos and/or videos related to the repair job. This makes it easy for everyone to know what the problem is and track the progress of repair work.

internal link Also Read: The Best Online Rent Payment Service for Small Landlords

5. Calendar

When combined with all the routine maintenance events and inspections landlords need to coordinate, it becomes challenging for landlords to keep track of all new repair requests. Unfortunately, that sometimes means these responsibilities fall through the cracks. Delaying or neglecting repairs will result in unhappy renters, and can cause damage to the property.

Property management software tools bring all of those jobs to one place so that you can keep track of important tasks, monitor progress, and store related notes and documents. Landlords can set reminders for routine maintenance and even schedule time-insensitive repairs. With TenantCloud, for instance, you can document priority levels, due dates, and more and share them with the appropriate parties.

6. Rental Maintenance Request Dashboard

Many tools have an intuitive maintenance dashboard that helps managers track outstanding and completed work. For example, in RentRedi, landlords can view a timeline of activity on all rental maintenance requests in the maintenance request dashboard. They can view the status of each maintenance request.

Renters also receive status updates automatically via email and text. They can add more detail about the maintenance issue and provide their availability. This helps landlords schedule a contractor visit or speak with a coordinator if you need troubleshooting.

internal link Also Read: RentRedi App: Property Management Software Overview

7. Accounting

Tax season can be challenging, especially if you have to scramble around trying to find paper receipts and piece together all rental incomes. With a property management tool, you can easily upload invoices and receipts to individual maintenance tasks.

Landlords and property managers can create work orders and track expenses associated with a repair. Many property management tools allow you to assign expenses to individual units and/or renters. Therefore, it becomes easy to tell where you are earning versus losing money. Some platforms can also pull together repair bills, other expenses, and online rent payments that you receive. This helps you run meaningful financial reports and complete taxes effortlessly.

internal link Also Read: Reporting and Accounting Tools: Best Accounting Software for Landlords

8. Vendor Integration

Along with landlords and renters, vendors or service providers also participate in the rental property maintenance process. The more they are integrated into the process of managing rental maintenance requests, the easier it is going to be on landlords and property managers.

With a property management software tool, you can bring your service providers into the system. This speeds up communication and streamlines maintenance tasks. Many of these tools allow landlords to create work orders, receive bids, and pay vendors all from within the platform.

rental maintenance requests

‘Hybrid’ Property Management for Managing Rental Maintenance Requests

Today, many companies are coming in to fill the middle ground between DIY landlording and hiring a property manager. These tools are often called ‘hybrid’, ‘flat fee’, or ‘virtual’ property management products. They centralize maintenance requests and coordinating a fix by an appropriate service provider. These products keep landlords involved in the aspects of management where they want to hold on to some control. At the same time, they leverage technology to streamline other processes, such as managing rental maintenance requests. Products that offer hybrid property management services include RentRedi, Marble, and Hemlane

internal link Also Read: Trends In Property Management Technology for 2021

Managing Rental Maintenance Requests: Landlord Gurus Takeaway

Using a property management software platform makes managing maintenance on rental property easy, fast, and cost-effective. These software products offer tools that help tenants send rental maintenance requests to their landlords. All communication can happen on the platform, including the exchange of photos and videos.

In some cases, you can also include the service providers that do the repair work. This makes coordination easy and quick. Many tools allow you to attach receipts and bills. They associate all records with individual tenants and their rental units, making record-keeping and evaluating both tenant and unit easy. 

You can check out our complete product overviews to help decide which property management platform is right for you.

Disclosure: Some of the links in this post are affiliate links and Landlord Gurus may earn a commission. Our mission remains to provide valuable resources and information that helps landlords manage their rental properties efficiently and profitably. We link to these companies and their products because of their quality, not because of the commission.

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About Eli Secor

Eli Secor, Co-Founder, Landlord Gurus Eli purchased his first rental property at the age of 20, a fourplex in Gold Canyon, Arizona. He was lucky to have the advice of a shrewd real estate investing grandmother, as well as special incentives for first time buyers following the savings and loan meltdown in the late ‘80’s. In 2004 Eli and his wife purchased their first property together, a triplex in Portland, Oregon. The neighborhood was improving, light rail was coming in, and the property needed a significant rehab. They traveled back and forth from their then home in California, improving and managing the property. Eli did a full remodel on the biggest unit, living in the construction zone while doing so. The property has been cashflow positive since day one, and is now worth 3-4 times its original purchase price. Eli has been involved in residential construction since 2001, having remodeled several houses from top to bottom, rehabbed or improved rental units, and built his family’s primary residence. He leverages his knowledge of buildings to improve and maintain rental properties cost and time-effectively. Since 2007 Eli has been managing property in Seattle for family members, and now oversees 20 apartments and 3 commercial spaces. He has a great handyman, who helps make repairs, maintenance, and improvement smooth and easy. Otherwise Eli is a DIY landlord, and single contact for all of his tenants.When Eli isn’t managing rental property he is working on home projects, sailing, mountain biking, skiing, or spending time with friends and family. Once or twice a week Chris and Eli get together to run their dogs, Lola & Peanut. These meetings do double duty as Landlord Gurus planning sessions!Credentials: - BA in History from Whitman College - General Contractor (Ex) - USCG Licensed Captain (UOPV Six-Pack)
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