Transitioning to new property management software can be a stressful endeavor.
Not only will you have to transfer your data from your old platform to your new one, but you’ll also have to learn an entirely new interface. In addition, your new platform might have different or unfamiliar features, confusing pricing, or have different integrations than you’re used to.
However, you can limit the stress of transitioning to new software by preparing ahead of time. By doing your research and learning about your new software, you’ll be a pro in no time.
Here are a few things to consider when switching property management software platforms.
Why are you switching?
Before you dive into new software, consider why you decided to switch. What didn’t you like about your previous platform? Were minor bugs or inconveniences the problem, or were there larger structural issues? Was there easy integration between applications?
Keep these concerns in mind while shopping for new software. Also, think about and note any features of your previous software platform that you did like. If you can, find a new platform that preserves the features you liked and improves on the ones you didn’t.
If pricing is your primary reason for switching, consider trying a free property management software platform. Both Innago and Cozy (newly merged with Apartments.com) offer property management software at no cost for landlords.
Migrating Your Data
After choosing a new platform, you’ll need to migrate your data. Data migration is the process of transferring your data from your old platform to your new one.
If you anticipate needing help with this step, consider paying a little extra for onboarding support. Many property management software platforms offer to pair you with an onboarding specialist for an additional fee. This individual will walk you through setting up your new software account and transferring your data.
Your documents will also need transferring. If you’ve been using your old property management software platform for a while, you probably have various documents stored on it. These may include leases, rental applications, addenda, rent receipts, spreadsheets, or other documents.
While you can certainly create new documents when you transition to your new platform, it’s easier to take your documents with you when you move.
Either way, use this time to make any updates or changes to your documents.
Communicating with Tenants
Tenants want to be in the know about what’s happening. Don’t keep your tenants in the dark as you transition to new software. After all, this change will affect them too.
Make sure you effectively communicate details and dates with your tenants. Let them know when the transition will occur and how to prepare. For instance, give tenants who use AutoPay a heads up that they’ll need to cancel their automatic rent payments and reinitiate them on the new platform.
You should also remind tenants that they’ll need to re-link their bank accounts, credit cards, or debit cards on the new platform. Encourage tenants to ask questions if they have any and reach out to you with any problems or concerns.
Leaving a Review
When you researched your new property management software platform, you probably used reviews to help you make your decision. Maybe you relied on ratings or read through other landlords’ written comments to inform your choice. As you transition to your new platform, consider leaving a review to help other landlords make a similar transition.
A few trusted software review sites include Capterra, G2, and TrustPilot. Depending on which one you choose, you may have to verify your purchase or identity through LinkedIn. These sites ensure that their reviews are dependable and helpful for software shoppers.
In your review, be sure to explain your problems or concerns with your previous platform, as well as your experiences with your new one once you get started.
Transitioning Software as Smoothly as Possible
Every new software application comes with a learning curve. However, if you’re already familiar with the features and functions of property management software, you’ll get the hang of your new platform in no time. By doing your research, migrating your data and documents, and communicating effectively with tenants, you will facilitate a smooth transition to your new software tool.