If you’re a property owner, you may already rely on technology to keep your business running. Here’s what you need to know.

Landlords and Tech: What You Need to Know

As a property owner, you may already rely heavily on technology – or you may need to start doing so soon. The bottom line is that technology has changed our lives, and it’s not going anywhere anytime soon. From digitally signing leases to arranging virtual showings, there’s never been a greater need for landlords to “go virtual.”

But can technology really make your life easier?

Absolutely! Here are three ways it can help you:

  1. Tech can streamline your rent collection processes
  2. Technology can help you process rental applications, including signing documents
  3. Tech can help you manage repair requests

If you work with a property manager, there’s a good chance that your property manager is already using technology to handle these issues. However, if you don’t, the following sections explain how technology can help you manage your real estate business.

#1. Tech Can Streamline Your Rent Collection Processes

An increasing number of tenants want to pay their rent online, and as a landlord, that benefits you. You don’t have to wait for a check to arrive in the mail, or for tenants to withdraw money from the bank and convert it into a money order (or hand you a pile of cash). Online payments decrease the number of late payments that come through, too, because they come directly from a tenant’s bank account.

It’s generally pretty simple to set up online payments. All you need to do is provide your tenant with your account information on the payment medium you choose and let them go from there.

Related: What’s forced appreciation in real estate?

#2. Technology Can Help You Process Rental Applications, Including Digitally Signing Documents

Processing rental applications is increasingly simple with technology. You can create a form online that prospective tenants need to fill in, and at the same time, the tenant can give you permission to contact references, as well as carry out background checks and credit checks. Prospective tenants can even digitally sign these documents, which is as good as a physical signature under the eyes of the law. As a side benefit, people tend to make fewer mistakes when they’re filling out digital forms.

Related: How old should you be to start investing in real estate?

#3. Tech Can Help You Manage Repair Requests

There are several easy systems you can use to manage repair requests from your tenants. In fact, there are programs that enable a tenant to make a repair request online; they can even include photos or videos of the issue to make it easier for you to find the right contractor. You can also use the information that tenants include to determine how urgent the request is and take action based on what you know. Many apps even enable you to forward repair requests directly to contractors you trust, and you can even pay for their services directly through the same app.

Related: What is a DST in a 1031 exchange?

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