If we may ask, how do you classify yourself as a digital landlord or real estate investor? Are you a rookie emerging on the scene? Do you identify as an independent or small landlord? Or are you perhaps a property manager with a few rentals under your belt? How you see yourself in the real estate world can depend mainly on how others like you classify themselves.
And this can include anywhere from a mom-and-pop landlord to a sizeable multifamily corporation. However, with the advent of modern technology, there’s a new type of landlord on the scene — the digital landlord. Previously, being a real estate investor or landlord had many manual tasks. We may consider collecting rent, sorting paper applications, and navigating maintenance issues.
These were time-consuming and tedious. But with technological advances in the real estate landscape, technology is transforming historically manual pain points of the renting process into seamless, simple, and digital. Today, digital landlords can easily collect rent, screen tenants, fill vacancies, sign leases, and manage maintenance with the technology they need to manage their rentals.
Understanding What A Digital Landlord Entails In The Real Estate Marketplace
To enumerate, a Digital Landlord uses technology to manage their properties. This can include anything from property management software to keyless tech to remote security measures. You might not even consider yourself a digital landlord, but if you look around and examine your business operations, you’re more tech-efficient than you think. The process is pretty straightforward.
For example, most use spreadsheets to track and organize certain rent management aspects. This can be anything from noting who’s paid rent and for what property, which leases are ending soon, who’s completed an application, and accounting. So, even something as simple as a spreadsheet indicates that you’re likely more of a digital landlord than you initially thought.
After all, even using your phone to check a tenant’s text can create this image of what a digital landlord is and how it can help define your business. As widespread as digital technology is these days, it’s almost impossible not to be a digital landlord to some degree.
How Technology Is Helping In Creating Digital Landlords
Technology is creating digital landlords with a wide range of offerings (everything from automated rent collection to accounting software) and use cases (landlords communicating with tenants or tenants electronically submitting rent payments) for landlords and real estate investors to adopt. As noted earlier, using your phone or a spreadsheet has technological advantages.
These mechanisms make calculating, communications, and management more accessible with the tech they offer. It would be a different story just 10-15 years ago! Most communications likely weren’t done on a cellphone yet, and you might still have been using paper and pen to track rent payments! However, the increase in technology has almost inadvertently created a digital landlord.
After all, isn’t it much easier to get ahold of a tenant or teammate with email and text messages than trying to track someone down or pinpoint a mutually available time to meet? Firing off a quick text can resolve to negotiate meeting times and efficiently communicate a message. You can even get ideas or research the tech other real estate investors use on TikTok! Yes, that’s right.
Even social media apps where investors are offering content can be a great addition to your tech toolbelt and bring you one step closer to being a digital landlord. In addition to phones, spreadsheets, and TikTok, property management software has increasingly become a way for digital landlords to manage their properties.
The Features To Look For In Digital Real Estate
Property management software offers many features that make the digital landlord feel like managing investment properties is a breeze. When determining which parts of your business you can enhance using digital tech, examine where you’re doing tasks manually, which pain points are holding you back from leading a rewarding real estate experience, and what tasks you’d like to make simpler.
- Rent collection
- Tenant payments
- Tenant screening
- Late fees
- Tenant communication
- Maintenance requests
Property management software is a tech option that you can use to tackle all of these traditional pain points. For example, rent collection can be automated with customized charges that are auto-populated for tenants, automatically scheduled, and even automatically generated late fees. Doesn’t that sound much easier than crunching numbers or picking up checks?
Tenant communication is another aspect of managing rentals that can be strengthened with digital technology. You can use property management software to send an email and push notifications to a tenant’s phone to remind them of upcoming rent payments, maintenance repairs, trash pickup, or any other notification you require!
What Being A Digital Landlord Offers You And How To Become One
Being a digital landlord has many benefits — the first being managing your rentals from anywhere. Because digital tech is so mobile and versatile these days, you’re likely to be able to manage most aspects of your business right from your smartphone. And, because you can manage your rentals using digital technology, this can free up more of your time by eliminating manual tasks.
With more of your time back, you can spend it doing what you love. You can also increase the value of your rentals by offering tenants options like signing up for credit boosting to submit on-time rent payments to bureaus like TransUnion. Historically, if you’re collecting rent via check or cash, tenants can’t build their credit using rent payments.
The main benefits are that you can:
- manage your rentals from anywhere
- spend more time doing what you love
- increase the value of your rentals
Be that as it may, we’ve come to the question: “How do I become a digital landlord?” As mentioned earlier, you can adopt several aspects of technology that will cement your image as a digital landlord. Are you looking to become a digital landlord and adopt these features? RentRedi’s property management apps can help!
Automating your rent collection, tenant screening, late fees, e-lease signing, and electronic applications are critical aspects of going digital and managing your entire real estate portfolio from an app. RentRedi was developed to help landlords go digital and manage their properties from wherever, whenever.