Successfully managing multifamily communities can be something of a juggling act of tenants’ needs, community upkeep, and office administration. Fortunately, the abundance of high-tech tools makes property management—from conducting inspections to measuring efficiency—easier and more streamlined than ever.
Everything but the Kitchen Sink The mobile property management suite, iPropertyMgr and its sister app, iField, make everything from employee timesheets to maintenance forms to property appraisals paperless and collocated. Execs can use the app to document and track projects, business analytics, expenses, work orders, and more; photos and audio can also be captured within the forms. Users can also send real-time property updates to office staff or clients. Customized dashboards make organizing data easy, and reports can be emailed or exported in PDF, Excel, or Word formats.
The apps are free to download, and come with sample forms to demo. Beyond the samples, pricing starts at $20 a month per mobile device.
Assessment Aide Dread inspection time no more with Happy Inspector, mobile software loaded with features to make completing reports a painless process. Through the app, users can create customized inspection sheets for each property, view vital property information, make assessment notes and add photos, input reminders for the next visit to the property, and more. Completed reports are hosted in an online dropbox and can be saved back into your property management software; existing reports can also be imported from legacy software.
The app is free for a demo of five inspection reports; satisfied users can then opt for a pay-as-you-go plan or one of three tiers of monthly paid subscription.
Effortless Efficiency Energy management can get short shrift in multifamily buildings. WegoWise, however, fills that niche by helping owners and managers easily monitor their energy data to increase efficiency and lower costs. Utility data is put into WegoWise’s system automatically, and users can compare usage across units, buildings, or other custom groupings; they can also see how they compare to other similar buildings and identify unusual energy spikes. The app’s measurement tools identify and verify potential savings through different energy investments, including a predicted ROI. The app also provides a WegoScore, a simple efficiency grade.
WegoWise offers a 30-day free trial period; pricing then starts a $6 a month per building.
Green Insight Following up on its original LEED Documentation app to track and verify construction credits, Green Badger’s new app, the LEED Water Use Calculator, helps maximize water savings. Useful for those facing both new construction and renovations, the app conducts real-time calculations to determine what impact different plumbing solutions would have on water efficiency and possible LEED certification credits. Through the in-app calculator, users can easily mix and match fixtures to realize optimum savings.
The app is free, though an upgraded version for $3.99 offers increased functionality. While it is currently only available for iOS devices, an Android release is planned for the future.
Smarter Water Landscaping is crucial for a beautiful apartment community that will attract renters, but it can be time-consuming to manage proper maintenance with traditional systems. Smart irrigation systems, like ETWater, use a combination of the site’s landscape profile (which users input through the online management system) and local weather data to execute a customized daily watering schedule. The central server and smart controllers all communicate wirelessly and can be set or adjusted remotely if necessary.
Though the upfront cost may be higher, healthier vegetation, decreased erosion and building damage, and substantial water savings—the company cites case studies demonstrating 20 to 50 percent reductions—provide return on investment.