90% of property managers are involved in rent collection, leasing units, and handling maintenance. Additionally, 80% also take care of advertising and perform inspections and evictions. Automating all these tasks and maintaining a high-efficiency level is possible only with the right property management software. Not sure how to find it? Scroll down to discover the ultimate list of the best solutions out there, along with our evaluation methodology, and a complete buying guide.
A good PMS is designed to simplify the day-to-day processes for project managers, enabling rent collection, maintenance requests management, and vacancy listings generation. We’ve devised a custom evaluation methodology to weed out the average software solutions and bring you a list of the best options currently available on the market. Read on to learn more about how we prepared our ranking.
We kicked off our search by looking for software solutions for different types of properties — commercial, residential, community, student housing real estate, and more. We appreciate platforms that cater to more than one real estate type. We also looked for products that can be used by both part-time landlords and property managers with large portfolios.
During our initial selection, we gave an advantage to cloud-based property management software vs. web-based software, with the former being faster to implement and simpler to maintain. Another thing we should note is that we skipped the niche software programs such as those for vacation rental — if you’re looking for one of these though, make sure to check top choices for vacation rental property management software.
The PMS should save you time so we chose the ones that are easy to use and have a simple learning curve. An intuitive interface with an easy setup is also a must, as it will reduce the training time and ease employee adoption. Being mobile-friendly or having a dedicated mobile app is also something we look for in software solutions.
Any winning software should provide great customer support. We tested the property management software companies for customer care by presenting ourselves as users and reaching out through all the available support channels. We assessed how quick, helpful, and friendly assistance the agents provided. We also evaluated the learning resources and how helpful they are in the case of occasional glitches or technical issues.
Any respectable PMS invests in robust security. Maintaining renters’ personal information safe and their payments secure is a thing we don’t compromise on. Some of the features we look for include GDPR-compliant personal data storage, bank-level data encryption, and PCI-DSS-compliant processing and card storage.
If the prospective property management systems tick the above-mentioned criteria, we move on to assessing their key features and functionalities.
Dealing with numbers is always exhausting — good thing is, the best PMS solutions have a built-in accounting feature to make this easier for you. This feature can automate tasks like staff payouts, receivables, filing 1099 tax forms, bookkeeping, and double-entry bookkeeping.
To be included in our property management software reviews, the product should provide easy and hassle-free online rent payment and payment processing in real-time. This practice will help you streamline the process in a safer, more secure way and keep data about every payment — when it was paid, by whom, who owes a late fee, and more — so you don’t lose important information. The tenants also enjoy this feature as it makes it easy for them to pay their rent online, saving time and energy.
Reporting is one of the most time-consuming tasks for managers. That makes it also one of the key features of any professional software for property management. We looked for solutions that provide financial reports, work order, occupancy, and screening reports. Managers should also be able to craft customized reports and export them in PDF or Excel.
In addition to reporting, the best software automates the lease cycle end-to-end, from recruitment to retention. This allows managers to handle background and credit checks, manage tenant screening, schedule inspections, streamline the process of signing the lease, filing and storing documentation, as well as move-outs or contract renewals. This helps in minimizing vacancies and maximizing the number of high-quality renters. Managers also stay organized and can easily access any document or file.
One of the most important features we looked for when listing the best property management solutions was allowing tenants to request work orders and let the manager supervise and track the repair process transparently so that all the parties are kept up to date. This also involves communication tools and options to schedule multiple requests. We gave a boost to platforms that also enable managers to conduct inspections, keep their properties in good condition and cut down the vacant time.
Marketing is crucial to attracting new tenants to occupy vacant properties. The property management software programs should allow managers to generate listings for properties, customize and then post them on industry-leading real estate sites such as Zillow, Realtor.com, Hotpads, and Trulia. Software solutions that offer a free website builder that managers can customize to promote their listings in one centralized platform get a ranking boost.
Tenant and owner portals ensure 24/7 access to any information across all devices. Designed to enhance the communication between the manager and tenants and owners, these portals help managers become more proactive, focus on maintaining a trusting communication and build solid relationships with both tenants and owners, while also reducing complaints. The best portals are also customizable so managers can control what tenants and owners see.
In addition to these must-have features, some more sophisticated property management software products offer extras such as built-in renters insurance, tenant screening, and after-hours answering services. If a prospective product offers such features, they are carefully examined so that we can ensure they provide the right balance of affordability and functionality.
Next, we check third-party directories and look for verified reviews from past clients. Those are particularly valuable since they provide insight into the strengths and weaknesses of the product. Of course, occasional glitches or minor issues wouldn’t make us discard the product, but we’d dig deeper. If we spot unresolved, repetitive problems, security issues, and technical errors that hinder the normal functioning of the product, the property management program is removed from our list.
Last but not the least, we try to uncover as many details as possible about the products’ payment options and plans. Our list includes software providers that charge by unit, along with others that provide a custom quote depending on the number of features they want included in the package.
Buildium is a cloud-based PMS software designed to automate the day-to-day operations of property managers and allow them to take total control over their business. That includes processes such as payment tracking, vacancy advertisement, and maintenance request tracking. It works perfectly for residential managers and associations.
Buildium’s leasing process helps you find the best tenants through in-depth screenings and applications. The software manages the property list and lets you share it on partners’ pages, getting it to millions of rental shoppers on Trulia, Zillow, HotPads, MyNewPlace, and more. You can easily view all units and track upcoming vacancies.
This property management accounting software lets you view the status of the applications, customize and manage them in the dashboard. The tenant screening feature will help you make the right decision and get the best tenant. The eLease feature further helps you streamline the process. You can also collect legally binding eSignatures.
Buildium provides an online portal for both owners and residents to manage documents, payments, and maintenance. Additionally, the software streamlines the communication, supports sharing documents and financial reports in real-time. The Happy Inspector integration allows you to perform field inspections, while the renters insurance streamlines the process of covering the residents at an affordable price.
With Buildium you can rest assured that your bookkeeping will always be complete and accurate. The property management system software enables you to easily track payments, manage accounts payable, generate comprehensive reports, automatically generate and e-file your Form 1099s, and more.
Buildium has a tiered pricing structure based on the number of units. It offers two types of plans: Core and Pro. The prices start at $47 per unit, per month for the Core plan. For the Pro plan, the price can go up to $4,560 per month for 4,500 units. You need to pay additionally for the features you plan to use — electronic leases will cost you $5, tenant screening $15, property inspections $40, etc.
As leading residential and student housing property management software, AppFolio centralizes the management processes. With this software, owners can manage their properties with ease, residents and landlords can communicate better, while marketers can enhance their online visibility and listings in no time.
Designed to support all your needs, this property management software offers a variety of tools that help you automate, market, and boost your business. It comes with an intuitive owner portal that gives access to financial statements, 1099s, shared documents, and enables you to send personalized owner packets, accept owner contributions and complete payments.
Renters can access the software, fill out applications, and pay from any device. As a property manager, you will immediately see the application in the app’s database and move them through the leasing process when ready. The built-in tenant screening will help you make the best decision and keep yourself in compliance with the Fair Housing Laws.
AppFolio is also among the leading property management systems in terms of accounting. It sports an accounting feature with flexible reporting that helps in making your business run smoothly. Although this feature isn’t quite beginner-friendly, it does support excellent tools for managing rentable items, online payments, debt collection, bulk tenant charges, and more.
AppFolio has excellent customer support, including a 24/7 maintenance answering service with professional AppFolio agents being available round the clock. They provide a super-fast response at a cost-effective price. On top of it, you have instant access to support resources, online training programs, education webinars, conferences, and events.
Among the main reasons why AppFolio is considered to be one of the best property management software solutions is its flexible pricing that can easily scale up as your business grows. It has two levels — Basic and Plus — and different pricing for commercial, residential, student housing, and community application. In the Basic package, the residential and student housing costs $1.25 per unit.
In the Plus plan, their price per unit is $3. The Basic plan for commercial housing costs $1.50 while the Pro is $3 per unit. The Community Associations is $0.80 for the Basic and $0.85 for the Plus plan. The minimum cost for the Basic plan stands at $250 a month and the Plus package comes in at $1,500 a month.
One of the best rental management software on the market, TenantCloud provides credit and background screening, maintenance tracking, invoice automation, property analysis reports and much. It’s completely free for up to 75 units and if you opt for a paid account, you’ll have access to yet more features such as full accounting and Google Calendar integration that will make this software even better.
Arguably the best landlord software, TenantCloud comes with a full-fledged feature set for more efficient management. As a landlord, you can take advantage of a custom marketing website at no additional cost. Once you activate it, you can market your listings and vacancies, reach more potential applicants, receive and manage online applications, and more. The software enables immediate tenant screening, performing background checks and credit reports.
One of the features that set TenantCloud apart from the competition is its personal listing resource, TC Rentals. Once you create a listing there, TenantCloud will send it to the industry-leading sites such as Trulia, Zillow, and Apartments.com to ensure maximum exposure.
Additionally, the landlord software provides full accounting, as well as on-demand rental and financial reports. You can create and automate invoices, notes for late fees, and receipts. Also, this feature allows you to collect partial payments prior to the due date. The document builder allows you to add lease agreements and notices, and collect e-signatures at any time. You can also track renters’ insurance, manage maintenance requests, and easily communicate with your tenants.
One of the reasons why TenantCloud is the favorite property management software for landlords with a small number of units is the platform’s free plan. TenantClouds’s Basic package is forever free for up to 75 units and includes 512MB file storage, 10 notice templates, and one admin account.
The price for the Standard plan comes in at $9 a month for up to 150 units. It supports auto payment, e-signature, and Google Calendar integration. The Advanced plan is perfect for landlords and property managers at $35 a month for up to 500 units. It comes packed with some advanced features such as 10 GB file storage, QuickBooks Sync, priority support, and more.
ResMan is the perfect software for rental property management for managers with more than 100 units. Packed with robust tools, the software addresses the evolving needs of your business. With an open and scalable architecture, ResMan provides unprecedented flexibility to create personalized best-in-class solutions that will fit your needs.
With ResMan, you can easily access the needed data and automate daily tasks, improving efficiency. The platform also provides a feature for automating maintenance, accounting, and leasing. The task management feature meanwhile lets you prioritize actions with a customizable color-coded system.
The user-friendly website builder offered by this rental property management software helps you deliver a seamless experience to users and attract new residents. The digital-first and intuitive online portal simplifies the qualification, payments, and leasing processes. Powered by CoreLogic, the software provides comprehensive tenant evaluation through examining the resident, portfolio, and property.
ResMan’s accounting feature enhances the speed and efficiency of your operations. The comprehensive system is accurate and consistent, centralizes the full-cycle accounting management, and provides robust reporting. Additionally, ResMan features budgeting tools with custom modules enabling you to define and hit targets, and analyze budgeting data.
ResMan doesn’t publicly disclose its pricing. You can contact the vendor to get a custom quote.
Rentec Direct is the ultimate residential property management software with a centralized platform for communication, organization, and accounting. It works best for managers that deal with up to 2,500 units; however, it’s easily scalable for even bigger portfolios. There are two types of this platform — one is dedicated to private landlords and the other caters to professional property managers.
Rentec Direct gives you access to the general ledger accounting module which enables you to edit, review, and print ledgers for your properties. Additionally, the residents can use the ACH payment method to transfer money or pay in cash in one of the Rentec Direct locations worldwide. As a manager, you can also use the AHC method to pay the property owner. On top of all this, Rentec provides reports and allows you to file 1099s.
With Rentec Direct property management software, you can stay on top of all business operations. You get a professional-looking website to promote listings where prospective tenants can fill in the applications and you can easily accept or reject them, as well as receive payments. Additionally, you can look for tenants on sites like Trulia, Realtor.com, and Hotpads.
You can use the owner portal to provide the property owner with access to important information. All valuable data is stored in the file library which is backed up daily so you can rest assured that nothing is lost. All important documents that need a signature can be reviewed and signed online, hassle-free. Rentec’s property management maintenance software also makes it easy for you to keep up with maintenance and repair. The work order management system allows you to sort the repairs by urgency level and you can notify both tenants and owners about the progress.
Rentec Direct further covers all important leasing and management processes. The tenant screening feature runs a background check as soon as an application is received. It notifies you about any criminal or eviction records, credit reports, and FICO scores. Note that this service comes at $7 per screening which is deducted from the tenants’ application fees.
Rentec Direct’s landlord software offers simple pricing. There are two plans — Rentec Pro and Rentec PM. The starting monthly price for one unit is $35 and $40, respectively. Both plans share the same features, but the Rentec PM package ups the ante with trust account management and reporting, owner portal, payment via ACH, automated CAM charges, and marketing and maintenance managers.
The tenant screening feature meanwhile comes at an additional fee of $7 for the basic screening package, $10 for the enhanced option, and $15 for the premium screening plan. Additionally, if you want to accept cash payments for tenants, you will have to pay a setup cost of $200 and the tenants will be required to pay a fee of $3.99.
Building Engines is a professional property management software that helps project managers improve their efficiency and deliver an amazing experience to their tenants. It works perfectly for commercial offices, retail, industrial properties, and commercial offices, offering excellent tools for maintenance, risk management, communication, and tenant services.
Building Engines’s commercial property management software offers great tenant service which simplifies the work of the entire team. Tenants have real-time access to your services and are able to get information, submit requests, book shared resources such as elevators and conference rooms. The can further access the building’s tenant handbook and documents. You meanwhile will be able to edit the handbook and documents at any time, pre-authorize an individual or a group, and manage work orders.
Building Engines also centralizes the maintenance processes. You can easily perform inspections, manage vendor performance and track work and expenses. Another notable feature of this online property management software is risk management. You can manage and automate the entire COI process and view the COI status of every tenant from the dashboard. An incident tracking feature helps reduce losses, while the platform will make sure you and your team are in compliance with the standard fire and life processes.
BuildingConnect is a one-stop service for tenants included in Building Engines. It provides simple options for property promotion and connects tenant handbooks, leasing information, service requests, building amenities, resource scheduling, and more. It further simplifies communication with broadcast messaging that allows you to send and save daily communications.
Building Engines doesn’t publicly disclose their fees so you need to contact them directly. The type of property, total square footage length of the agreement and any special requirements that will influence the quote.
Propertyware is one of the top property management software solutions ideal for low-density and single-family rental units. This highly-customizable platform combines property management, accounting, and marketing, helping you reach your goals and optimize profits.
Propertyware is scalable, cost-effective, and customizable software that streamlines the rental management process. Its marketing toolset offers full-service digital marketing solutions focused on converting leads into tenants. You get to customize an intuitive, mobile-responsive website to drive more traffic and boost conversion. The lead tracker allows you to monitor every prospect once the lead is generated and all the way to the moment the lease is signed so that you know what works and what doesn’t.
This commercial property management software also offers stellar accounting with a variety of payment options that reduce the risk of late or missed rent. Additionally, Propertyware keeps track of the payments and allows you to set a property-level budget. The software also excels in terms of maintenance. It takes care of the entire lifecycle — you can generate and track work orders and maintenance requests.
The customizable application screens the tenants for credit, criminal backgrounds, and more. The customizable tenant and owner portals provide secure access to information, enabling easy communication and task completion from any device, anywhere.
This rental property management software provides a top-notch contact center. The professionally trained agents offer 24/7 maintenance request support and will answer every call and email. There is also a team that offers customer support via phone and email. That said, the support isn't available 24/7 and they don’t offer customer support via live chat.
Propertyware has a scalable pricing structure for its landlord property management software available in three plans. The Basic starts at $1/unit/month and requires a minimum spend of $250. It includes basic features such as owner portals, accounting, payments, tenant screening, maintenance, unlimited storage, and global customization and reports.
The Plus plan starts at $1.50/unit/month with a $350 minimum. It ups the features of the Basic plan with inspections and e-signature. The monthly per-unit cost for the Premium plan stands at $2 with $450 minimum spend. It adds vendor portals and maintenance projects to the features of the lower-tier plans. Propertyware offers a 15-day free trial for all its plans.
Entrata is a comprehensive apartment property management software with a wide variety of tools that help you manage applications and easily move in a tenant. Additionally, this software enhances tenant engagement making it easy for you to maximize profits. The most powerful features of the platform include lead nurturing, accelerated invoicing and accounting, and easy lease renewal.
Entrata addresses all the accounting management business needs from invoice processing to payment. The platform’s Fulfilment team will process your property invoices and input them into Entrata Accounting, so you can simplify the workflow. The automate leasing and resident management allows you to bill and collect rent, and simplify the financial steps when a resident moves in or out.
The software comes packed with some great property management tools that will ease the process of creating purchase orders, and assigning them to a property or a vendor. Another notable feature of this software is the Facility Management which ensures great accuracy, fast response times, and more satisfied residents. The work orders can be created from any device and the maintenance team can access them at any time to add notes or sign off on work.
The intuitive Inspection Manager meanwhile lets you keep track of every amenity. The setup is highly customizable and you can easily take pictures or make notes about anything that requires attention.
Entrata’s pricing isn’t disclosed on its website. You can contact them directly to get a custom quote.
Landlords that manage properties can benefit greatly from Cozy. This software’s top property management features are free for landlords and provide end-to-end services to help with choosing the right tenants, marketing vacancies and keeping things organized. On the flip side, Cozy isn’t as scalable as some of the other options provided here so if you need more advanced functionalities as you expand your portfolio, you might want to look elsewhere.
Cozy’s property management software offers great features for listings — you can customize them and add a photo gallery, pet policies, terms, and amenities and then post them on Doorsteps.com and Realtor.com to reach more potential renters. While there isn’t an option to create a dedicated website, you’ll get a link which you can share on your website or social media.
Every listing has a built-in rental application and you can invite renters to apply via the link. If you’re willing to pay an extra fee, you can take advantage of the customized Cozy Rent Estimate report which will analyze the rents in your area and recommend the best price for your property.
Cozy offers comprehensive tenant screening. The Experian reports meanwhile include the current credit and financial information about the applicant. The simple property management software also performs extensive background checks via Checkr, providing information about any criminal records, eviction, or offender history. You can easily pull up data and compare applicants side by side based on their employment, income, and rental histories.
Cozy processes tenant payments through Stripe, ensuring the utmost security. You can easily receive deposits and payments through your bank account at no charge. Tenants can pay for free via their checking accounts or for a 2.75% fee if they use their cards. Late fees will be automatically applied to those whose rent is past due. All transactions are stored in the Transaction tab, providing a clear overview of all payments. With a single click, you can export your payment history anytime.
This property management program provides powerful tools to landlords for free. Landlords will be charged if they opt to use any of the additional services offered. One of them is the Cozy Rent Estimate feature which comes in at $19.99.
There is also the option to receive express payouts for only $2.99 per month, per unit. Renters will be charged for tenant screening reports — background checks and credit reports cost $24.99 individually and $39.99 if they are purchased as a bundle. Also, they will be charged a 2.75% service fee if they pay via card. The renters insurance costs approximately $20 a month but varies depending on the property and its location.
A leading estate management software, Condo Control Central provides a communication and management platform designed to streamline the processes for property managers. Suitable for startups and small businesses, this software allows you to manage payments, create service requests, manage and store documents, and much more.
This software for property management lets you view available amenities, and approve or decline when someone books. Thanks to the dedicated portal, you can automate payments and set recurring monthly payments. The software comes packed with excellent record-keeping features. You can organize all bookings, requests, documents, and other important information in one place.
The communication is centralized and made faster which allows you to quickly act upon the request, announcements, and information, or grant permissions. Additionally, you can send emails, text or voice notifications to your community. You can create a website that you can use to poll residents, track tasks and maintenance, share community details, or publish event calendars.
The CCC property management software also provides a security and concierge console designed for security personnel to monitor and authorize what enters condominiums. It includes package tracking and key management features, as well as security logs and reports, parking permits, and a patrol system.
Condo Control Central offers two plans — Core and Premium. Both plans include the announcements, file library, online store, service request, mobile app, unit files, budget mail-out, and resident portal. The Premium plan ups the offering with additional features, such as security and concierge, and record keeping.
Different software solutions cater to different types of property managers. That’s why you should start weeding out the prospective products based on your business type and size. Do you need software for commercial or residential real estate establishment? Or maybe for a community or student housing? Limit your choice to the options that cater to your needs.
Next, shortlist the companies based on the number of units you’re managing. If you have a large portfolio, you need a product that will address that accordingly. Similarly, if you have a small number of units, you don’t need elaborate software which would cost you an arm and a leg.
The scalability of property management applications is another important thing to consider. While you might manage only 10 units, if you’re planning to expand your portfolio, you need a solution that can easily adjust to your requirements and grow with your business. Make sure to eliminate the software with limited scalability, or software that charges high fees for adding more users.
Take the shortlist you’ve made based on the first two steps and make a list of the features you consider essential for your business. Do you need robust accounting or do you already have someone in your team that manages those operations externally? Do you want software that will have both tenant and owner portal? Or maybe you want strong marketing features and the option to create your own website? Compare property management software based on the features you need and the features they offer.
The final step should leave you with your best choice. Analyze the pricing options of the software solutions left on your list or contact them directly for a personalized quote. Then make the calculation based on your pre-defined budget and go for the property management software that fits best within that frame.