How Technology Can Optimize the Rental Process for Owners, Tenants, and Property Managers in Grand Rapids

May 26, 2023 | Owner Education, Property Management Education

How do you use technology in your daily life? 

You probably use it all the time. When you’re renting out a Grand Rapids property, you can leverage technology to optimize the rental process. This benefits you and your tenants. If you’re working with a Grand Rapids property management company, you’re in luck. They’ll have far-reaching technology resources that are sure to save you money and contribute to a better and more profitable rental experience. 

Better Pricing Data for Grand Rapids Rentals

How do you decide on a rental price? You cannot price your property according to what you think it’s worth. You have to price it according to what the market demands. 

That requires up to the minute data and a lot of experience in the local market. 

Pricing your home accurately and competitively is a great way to limit your vacancy loss and attract the best possible tenants.  

Technology is a huge asset when it comes to pricing your rental property. 

Any landlord has the capacity to go online and see what other homes are renting for. You can check out sites like Zillow and Craigslist. You can take a look at neighboring listings. But, you’ll be far more successful with reliable data that’s based on what properties actually rented for, and not what they were listed for. By knowing how long they were on the market, you’ll be able to judge whether your property should be priced a bit higher or a bit lower.

A comparable market analysis will assist with accurate and competitive pricing, and to get that analysis, you need some technology. Use the technology tools available to price your property correctly. If you don’t have them on your own, partner with a Grand Rapids property management company to get an idea of where you should be pricing your rents.

Marketing: Technology Helps with Listings and Showings

Marketing your rental property will impact how quickly you’re able to rent it. The goal is to get it in front of as many tenants as possible. That’s likely to be time consuming if you have to load your listing onto each site manually. 

There’s a better way.

    • Syndicating your online listings with the help of technology

Save time and money and reach more potential tenants by syndicating your listings across all the most popular rental sites in and around Grand Rapids. With a syndicated system, you can post your vacant home on more than one rental website. It will be shared across various platforms, giving you an opportunity to reach more tenants.  

Our property management technology allows us to do this easily for all the owners we work with. As an independent landlord, you’re likely to pay for a syndication, but the cost is worth it. You’ll have faster, better results. 

    • Self-showing technology speeds up the leasing process

Self-showing technology has also dramatically improved the process of letting tenants see your home. With digital keys and lockboxes, pre-authorized tenants can securely let themselves into your home and see it on their own schedules. There’s no waiting for you to be available, and less time is lost showing up for appointments that potential tenants simply blow off. 

When you use a self-showing platform, the entire process is more streamlined. Research has shown that self-showings actually lead to faster applications, giving you fewer vacancy days. 

Objective Screening and Application Processes 

Screening tenants is one of your most important jobs when you rent out a Grand Rapids property. You need to pay attention to fair housing laws during the screening process, and it’s essential that you treat every application the same way. How can you ensure that happens? By automating the screening process so that it’s objective and fair.  

Provide an electronic copy of your qualifying rental criteria to anyone interested in an application. This will allow them to decide whether they have a good chance of being approved. Then, provide an online application. 

With the right technology and screening platform, your screening process is well-documented and equal. It would be very difficult to discriminate for any reason, and that keeps you and your properties fair housing compliant.

Tracking Your Income and Expenses

There’s a lot of technology available when it comes to accounting and bookkeeping. It’s easier than ever to track the income and expenses associated with your Grand Rapids rental property. If you’re still using an Excel spreadsheet, it’s time to upgrade. You can download apps and try software that assists you with everything from rent collection to budgeting to tax reporting. 

For property managers in Grand Rapids, the accounting software we use feeds into our owner and tenant portals. You can track when rent was paid, when maintenance invoices are due, and how much you’re spending on services like pest control and landscaping. 

Your accounting technology can help with:

    • Security deposit collection and return
    • Online rental payments
    • Documenting expenses and collecting receipts
    • Printing off necessary tax forms, like 1099s.

Software is available for property owners independently, or you can leverage the resources of a Grand Rapids property management company. We have careful, detailed, and accurate accounting because of the system we use to make sure every penny is accounted for. You don’t have to do anything except review your statements that arrive with your on-time rental payments. 

Documenting Maintenance and Property Condition

home inspectionUse technology to follow the repairs and maintenance that are needed at your property. You can ask tenants to submit routine maintenance requests in writing so that you have a documented record of what was needed, and when. This will help you plan preventative maintenance and avoid those expensive emergency repairs. 

You can also use technology to conduct inspections. For Grand Rapids property managers, those inspection reports are easier to share when there’s good technology available. Our owners receive detailed reports with photos and videos so they know exactly how your property looks. 

We automate a lot of our systems by using technology, and we’d be happy to share more about how it can help you. Please contact us at Short South Realty Group.