The real estate market is constantly in flux. July 2023 saw a 0.9% increase in pending sales over June 2023, with a great deal of that increase happening in the South and West regions. But that increase makes more sense when comparing it to last year’s pending sales (a 14% decrease from last year) and all the other market activity.
Even this sliver of data, which highlights a tight real estate market with low supply and mixed results on property appreciation, shows how complex finding, pricing, and managing real estate deals can be. To handle all of this, investors benefit from a constant flow of market data, smart software to keep up, and countless other tools for managing real estate transactions without getting left behind.
One of the most important strategic decisions you can make is choosing real estate software for investors that helps you manage all of these processes. Since it’s important to move fast in the real estate industry, consider your business if you could gain a more insightful grasp on the market, streamline investment transactions, and easily manage a growing portfolio of properties.
In this article, see why incorporating more real estate software for investors into your business is so beneficial (especially in a historically manual and opaque industry) and how you can confidently select the software with the biggest advantages for your operations.
Why Prioritize Finding the Right Real Estate Software for Investors?
Many real estate investors only occasionally incorporate software because the solutions aren’t built for real estate investment. Currently, you might have a calendar where you manually insert important dates. Maybe you have a few Excel spreadsheets and calculators for determining the value of prospective environments. But with the rise of more digital processes, it’s more important to have purpose-built tools to keep on top of operations.
This technological rise also means there are better options available now than when you first created your business or when you started incorporating more digital processes. Here’s why now is the right time to start seriously considering digitizing more of your business.
Move Faster With Streamlined Processes
Paperless processes are faster. When you can send offers through digital document management and signature portals, there are fewer delays. If you have to manage tasks and communications across multiple parties, having automated workflows that trigger next steps and reminders keeps everything flowing smoothly. Today’s software solutions can even integrate so you don’t have to switch between them.
Access Real-Time Market Data
When you can generate real-time market reports filled with new active listings, you have a better grasp of the shifting market. Smart tools pull data from the MLS and other sources as soon as it becomes available. You can quickly determine what the right purchase price and sales price are for a prospective flip, or you can decide whether a new property on the market is worth putting an offer on. If you’re operating from old data, even as old as a week or a month, your decisions can cut into your profit margins.
Quickly Upload and Manage Listings
The average time a home sits on the market in Texas is 56 days as of July 2023. For homeowners, those 56 days can be relatively short. But for investors, those 56 days are a lag on cash flow. Time spent on the market means paying interest on the monthly mortgage, paying utilities, and paying for landscaping upkeep and cleaning services.
The faster you can create your listing, market the property, and accept an offer, the better. Any software that can reliably help you shorten that timeframe is worth pursuing. Flat-fee listing service platforms make it simple to upload all the details on the MLS, and you can immediately reach a very wide market of prospective buyers.
Reduce Overhead and Administrative Costs
Part of the cost-saving that real estate software for investors brings to the table is the sheer speed. You don’t have to pay staff or professional services to manually collect data and generate summaries, and you don’t have to hold onto properties as long. But there are additional advantages.
- You don’t have to pay as much for printing services or printers themselves when you can just send an email.
- You can immediately filter out ‘maybe’ properties and focus on ‘right-fit’ properties.
- With software that provides MLS listings, portfolio management, and listing management, you don’t need to hire a realtor with their hefty 3% commission fees.
How to Use Real Estate Software for Investors to Improve Operations and Sales
Accessing the above benefits relies on choosing the right software for the job. But when there are dozens of competing platforms available for every business function and region in the real estate industry, choosing the right one is challenging. Even trying to differentiate between the tools can be overwhelming.
To simplify your search, use these four essential guidelines to evaluate software and see how they fit into an optimal daily workflow for your real estate business.
1. Look for Mobile-Friendly Options
When you’re an investor, you likely work on the go. You might be away from your computer due to touring potential purchases or meeting with clients and advisors. To make sure you can comfortably run your business without being tied to a desk or constantly stressing about missed opportunities, opt for software that is mobile-friendly.
Modern apps are often built to run on smartphones without delays, bad formatting, or aggravations. Look for tools that can fit any screen and sync between all of the devices you and your team regularly use.
2. Find Software and Pro Services That Offer Multiple Functionalities
While you can build a tech stack that includes as many moving parts as you want, it’s generally best practice to utilize as few ecosystems as possible. For example, an eCommerce or professional services business might primarily rely on a robust CRM platform with a lot of modules. Similarly, your real estate investment business should have one or two core platforms that host the majority of your business operations, with tools and add-ons that integrate within those core elements.
3. Create an Integrated Workflow and Property Management System
Before you start shopping for software that supports your business, think strategically about the type of business you want to run.
- You might have a growing and ever-revolving portfolio of properties you’re flipping. In this scenario, look for software that can track the progress of every flip, in-progress sales, and the archive of your past properties.
- You might maintain several rental properties. Because you’re more involved in each property long-term, more robust profiles are required for each one. It’s also important to maintain a detailed understanding of pricing dynamics in each neighborhood so you can properly maintain and upgrade the properties, price them when tenants leave, and make sure they’re in good condition.
- Suppose you’re just beginning to sell properties, especially as flips. In this instance, it helps to have a software solution primarily geared toward the transaction process. Look for additional support to track offers, communications with prospective buyers, and all the moving parts as a deal moves toward a close.
The particulars of your business, as well as your experience with the business, will dictate what sort of resources you need and which elements of software matter most to you.
4. Only Pay for Software That Offers Everything You Need to Grow Your Business
Software is a long-term investment, whether it’s a cloud-based solution on a subscription model or a use-by-use payment. You’re building your business operations based on the capabilities of the software or the professional services of the software. It will dictate the exact tasks and workflows that fill up your mornings or your assistant’s to-do list, and it will determine how you gather data and make decisions about your business.
Since the software weighs so heavily on your overall operations, set strict requirements for the types of software you’re willing to even start using. Consider these factors.
- Ease of Use: It should be easy for you to adopt and train employees on.
- Optional Marketing Add-Ons: You might just want core services for one property or add-ons and support for another. Choose software that gives you transparent services and pricing without locking you in.
- Efficiency: The software should be fast and provide actual value for your business.
- Scalability: Can you use the platform as your business grows, narrows, or diversifies? If it’s only useful at the beginning stages of your business and won’t grow with you or continually provide value, it may not be worth it.
- High ROI: One of the most important metrics in your business is ROI. Good services cost money, but you need to see a sufficient increase in revenue or profit to warrant the cost. Regularly measure the value and ensure you’re profiting from every software feature.
Fill Your Need for Essential Real Estate Software for Investors
The right real estate software for investors can radically change your business. Whether you need financial management tools, CRMs, or communication tools for contractors or property managers, each option should add value and remove barriers.
At ListingSpark, we provide software solutions that empower investors throughout the transaction stages. With services like flat-fee MLS listing, marketing support, negotiation management, and even professional photography, our software platform is built to support your real estate investment business as it grows and changes. Reach out today to see how we can fill in the gaps in your tech stack and power more efficient transactions.
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