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How Has Residential Property Management Changed Over The Last 10 Years?

How has residential property management changed over the last 10 years?

How has property management changed over the last 10 years? In our last article we stepped into the future and what it might hold for Property Managers. So we thought it would be useful to compare how things have changed in the last 10 years, in an attempt to see how far the industry has come. We’ve put together a list of – yes, you guessed it – 10 changes that have happened in the last decade in the world of property management.

Here it is, the CPL Software top 10 changes in residential property management of the last decade. In no particular order…

1. Websites

When I look around the internet at Residential Property Management websites, like any industry, there’s varying levels of functionality, usability and good design. The industry has come a long way since 2010. Payment portals would have been non-existent via a website. If anyone had suggested the idea of an app we’d probably have been laughed at. And many companies might not even have had a website!

 

But now, many Residential Property Management firms have websites that give customers so much information and make it easy to do business with them. From easy online payment methods, detailed account information and simple to use voting systems, websites have come on leaps and bounds.

2. Client Portals

Client portals replace old payment methods – like over the phone card payment, cheque or even cash payment in the office. But over the last 10 years, more and more Residential Property Management businesses are realising that Client Portals are necessary.

Client portals are usually plugins to a website offered by a specialist software company. They make it easy for customers to pay and seriously enhance the customer experience. They also make it easier for Property Managers and Accounts departments to manage the finances of the business.

Before Client Portals, it would have been a very manual process to keep track of payments received and outstanding. However, with technological advances, a good Client Portal will integrate all of this information in one place, provide reports and send reminders automatically when a payment is outstanding.

The introduction of Client Portals to Residential Property Management brings a lot of benefits to both clients and Property Management teams – from Property Manager to Director level.

3. Apps

For those of a certain age, apps are still relatively new, having only been introduced to us in 2008 by Apple. But as we talked about in our previous article , anyone who is a teenager or in their early 20’s now, probably can’t remember a time before apps.

In Residential Property Management, the use of apps is still fairly limited. The benefits of an app is that they are easy to access. The tap of the app opens everything a customer needs without the hassle of logging into a website. Apps can be updated regularly with new features allowing businesses to stay up to date or get ahead of the competition. Going back to the article I mentioned already, apps are also something that the future customer will expect to have – a bit like websites now.

4. Growing population

As we also spoke about in our last article, population keeps growing. Looking back to 2010, the UK had a population of 62.51 million compared with 67.9 million now. People are living longer and new generations are moving into their own home. A decade may not seem like a lot, but someone who was 18 in 2010, will be 28 now and will have very different needs and wants than customers who are 50 plus. Again, this could be different ways of communicating – do 28 year old millenials open or respond to mail? And do they expect businesses to be more ethical and sustainable?

“The rapid growth of technology and gadgets makes information available to millennials in real-time. They are more familiar with global trends, sustainable and ethical practices that directly impact their consumption patterns.

To win over millennials, they must buy into a brand’s story. Companies must build a reputation for environmental stewardship and social responsibility to gain customer loyalty while having a positive environmental impact.

The population is ever changing. And Residential Property Managers must adapt to suit the ever changing needs and wants of the upcoming generations – potentially improving the lives of all in doing so.

5. Sustainability

Which takes me on nicely to Sustainability as it’s a topic in itself. 10 years ago, sending paper invoices and snail mail would have been the norm for Property Managers. Sustainable thinking probably wasn’t too far up the agenda.

But gradually over the years, most Residential Property Managers have been encouraging customers to switch to email communication to save paper and the trees. Some forward-thinking firms are getting involved in bigger longer term projects with the implementation of e-chargers in buildings. And some are supporting the global good with charitable initiatives.

You can read our previous article which goes into the potential opportunities for the next 10 years for Residential Property Managers.

6. Bigger teams

Along with growing populations, comes more homes. Which potentially means, that in the last 10 years, most Property Management firms will have bigger teams. This means that communication in house needs to be clear, efficient and available to all who need it.

The Post It Note on the screen, the ‘forward to all’ email in the hope someone will answer, the manual In Box. None of these are going to cut it anymore. With bigger teams, comes more room for human error and it’s important that managers and directors ensure this is minimised.

With the right technology in place, this can of course help with SLA’s, a continuous flow of information and at the end of it all, happier, more satisfied customers.

7. Pandemic

I’m not sure I could have written this article about the last 10 years without mentioning the situation we find ourselves in now. The pandemic has caused a seismic shift in how we live our lives. Which, for the most of us, means working and living at home.

The Property Management firms who have invested in technology over the last 10 years are the ones who have perhaps found the shift a little easier than those who haven’t. Yet there are still challenges to navigate that we have not experienced ever, let alone could have prepared for in the last 10 years.

But perhaps we can utilise this time to identify what can make the business more future proof or how to serve customers better. We’ve all realised that our homes need to be looked after and that Property Management is an essential aspect of this.

8. Key Scanning

In 2014, we launched a solution for the never-ending problem of misplaced or lost keys. We realised that many of our clients were losing keys and forking out for new ones, weekly, if not daily. It’s an expense that we felt could be avoided. But how?

We need a tracking system. Something that could check out and check in keys so that people in the business would know who had them where last. To date, we have help numerous clients who have saved time and money with this simple add-on to their system.

9. More competition

One of the additional consequences of having more homes is that it opens up the market for more Property Management firms. Or existing Estate Agents diversifying into Property Management. There is now more competition on the market than ever before. This helps the customer because it means they have more choice. For firms, this means continuous improvement in service delivery must be high on the agenda.

10. Contractors

Last but not least, another consequence of more homes, is more repair and maintenance work – which needs more contractors. More contracts, means more communication which in turn requires better management of all processes and people in those processes.

Until now, this has been a very manual task. Perhaps there are mixed methods of communicating between office and contractor making it difficult to stay on top of who has responded and quoted. Maybe spreadsheets would be used to track jobs which are prone to human error. And how does a Property Manager keep track of how well the job is going? Is it nearly finished and on schedule? This would also have been a very manual process of relying on the contractor to get in touch or chasing them down for an answer.

Luckily, we have launched the Blockworx app this year to help Property Managers communicate easily and smoothly with contractors. The app brings the entire process under one perfect digital roof. If you’d like to find out more, you can visit the Blockworx website here.

If you’d like to chat about Property Management software and the solutions we can offer your business, please do get in touch with us today. We’re always delighted to hear from new people!

 

 

 

SPECIALIST SOLUTIONS FOR PROPERTY FACTORS

Management and Financial

Pointing at post it notes

Board and Management Information

Directors and Management will have full and easy access to relevant and necessary business information online. Reduce business risk by improving processes and procedures for everyone in the team.

+ Trackability and traceability of all inbound documents and communications
+ Achieve SLA’s with a traffic light system to track progress on tasks
+ Granular Management Information based on a tree structure
+ Identify any potential breaches of SLA’s and take proactive steps to resolve
+ Implement fully automated processes to reduce costs, save time and improve business efficiencies

Man reading newspaper

Accounts and Financial Management

Manage all finances going in and out of the business at the touch of a button. Improve your management data and automate manual processes to save you and your business time and money.

+ Works for actual or budget basis
+ Preparation of budgets and financial forecasts
+ Automated billing and reminders
+ Preparation of year end accounts and returns and automated year end statements
+ Track and trace all inbound documents and invoices to meet SLA’s
+ Produce and view graphs
+ Upload and send invoices
+ Automate and manage Credit control and Purchase Ledger
+ Set daily, weekly or monthly reminders
+ Manage debtors

Person on laptop

Compliance and Regulatory

Avoid FTT’s, meet rules and legislation and ensure you never miss a deadline. With dedicated software for Scottish Property Factors, you can manage all of your legal requirements automatically, without having to stress or worry about it.

+ Reminders direct to your desktop
+ Peace of mind that you will never miss a deadline
+ Stress free way to manage your legal obligations
+ Liaise with suppliers and clients automatically

Client Services

Edinburgh tenements

Property Factoring

View your entire portfolio online in one place with all communications centralised and visible to those who need it, when they need it.

+ Daily management of all property factoring tasks
+ Streamlined processes
+ Smoother communication with clients, contractors and suppliers
+ Visibility of portfolios – great when team members are on holiday
+ Easy apportionment of charges
+ Reminders, appointments and To Do lists in one place

Women on laptop

Customer Care

Manage your client communications with ease allowing you to be more responsive, timely and to meet service level standards. Meet their growing digital expectations with your own branded portals and apps.

+ Smoother payments with a branded online portal and app
+ 24/7 communication
+  Full transparency of documents online with traffic light system to ensure SLA’s are met
+ Improved cashflow
+ Paperless billing saves postage
+ Future focused business and brand

Person holding phone

Payment Portals and App

Make it easy for your clients to pay bills and statements with your own branded client portal and app. The portal and app integrates with your software and automates the entire process giving you complete transparency and streamlining of billings, payments and reminders.

+ Improved cashflow
+ Automate bills and reminders
+ Reduce your carbon footprint with paperless billing
+ Easier way to pay
+ Integrated solution with your software
+ Future proof your business
+ Exceed your client expectations

People at a desk

Insurance and Claims

Automate your insurance bills and statements replacing a manual process with a streamlined solution.

+ Communicate easily with clients
+ Automate insurance billing
+ Peace of mind for you and your clients

Property Maintenance

Drill

Repairs and Maintenance Made Easy with Blockworx

Automate your repairs and maintenance processes and go digital with Blockworx – the easy way for contractors and Property Factors to work together.

This ‘full circle’ approach to managing this often complex and time consuming task makes the entire process smooth and seamless. From requesting quotes through to final invoices, the entire process will be brought online in one place.

+ Send and receive tenders automatically
+ Distribute quotes, organize voting and instruct work as a joined up process without manual intervention
+ Liaise with contractors and clients efficiently and easily
+ Provide 24/7 communication with portal and app
+ Send and receive invoices automatically
+ Fully integrated contractor and repairs and maintenance management

Man holding tablet

Health & Safety

Conduct your routine health and safety inspections and produce reports online. No need to deal with soggy paperwork and eliminate double input of work when returning from the field to the office.

+ Inspection app tailored to specific report requirements
+ Sign and send emails to all relevant parties
+ Integrates with CPL to send reminders and notifications
+ Reduces risks – insurance, health and safety and business
+ Improves business processes
+ No WiFi or 4G/5G required

Glasgow view

Site Visits and Inspections

Conduct property inspections and surveys quickly and easily with our easy to use app. Create your own bespoke reports that you can send to recipients instantly.

+ Upload photos instantly
+ No more soggy paper and pens
+ Improved efficiencies and time savings
+ Transparency of information
+ Email to all relevant parties as soon as the report is generated
+ No WiFi or 4G/5G required

Sustainability

Buildings green trees

Sustainability

As businesses, being conscious of our impact on our environment is a necessity. And clients and the general public are becoming more aware of what businesses are doing to reduce their carbon footprint. We can help you implement sustainable changes that will positively impact your business, your clients and our planet.

+ Paperlight office with electronic filing and document management
+ Introduce paperless billing
+ Implement and manage initiatives across your portfolio
+ Cost savings with less postage, less paper, less statationery and less time

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DEDICATED SOFTWARE SOLUTIONS FOR BLOCK MANAGERS

Management and Financial

Pointing at post it notes

Board and Management Information

Directors and Management will have full and easy access to relevant and necessary business information online. Reduce business risk by improving processes and procedures for everyone in the team.

+ Trackability and traceability of all inbound documents and communications
+ Achieve SLA’s with a traffic light system to track progress on tasks
+ Granular Management Information based on a tree structure
+ Identify any potential breaches of SLA’s and take proactive steps to resolve
+ Implement fully automated processes to reduce costs, save time and improve business efficiencies

Man reading newspaper

Accounts and Financial Management

Manage all finances going in and out of the business at the touch of a button. Improve your management data and automate manual processes to save time and money.

+ Preparation of service charge budgets and financial forecasts
+ Automated service charge billing and reminders
+ Preparation of year end accounts and returns and automated year end statements
+ Track and trace all inbound documents and invoices to meet SLA’s
+ Full accounting service and liaison with Auditors including Tax advice
+ Produce and view graphs
+ Upload and send invoices
+ Automate and manage Credit control and Purchase Ledger
+ Set daily, weekly or monthly reminders
+ Manage debtors

Person on laptop

Compliance and Regulatory 

Avoid FTT’s, meet rules and legislation and ensure you never miss a deadline. With dedicated software for English Block Managers, you can manage all of your legal requirements automatically, without having to stress or worry about it.

+ Reminders direct to your desktop
+ Peace of mind that you will never miss a deadline
+ Stress free way to manage your legal obligations
+ Liaise with suppliers and clients automatically

Client Services

Office

Block Management

Each and every block manager in your firm will be able to view all of their properties online in one place with communications centralised and visible to all who need them. By automating the admin, your Block Management team will find they have more time to spend working on delivering an even better service for your clients and adding further value to the business.

+ Daily management of all block management tasks
+ Centralised data and information accessible to all who need it
+ Streamlined processes
+ Smoother communication with clients, contractors and suppliers
+ Visibility of portfolios – great when team members are on holiday
+ Easy apportionment of charges
+ Reminders, appointments and To Do lists in one place

Women on laptop

Customer Care

Manage your client communications with ease allowing you to be more responsive, timely and to meet service level standards. Meet their growing digital expectations with your own branded portals and apps.

+ Smoother payments with a branded online portal and app
+ 24/7 communication
+ Full transparency of inbound documents with efficient traffic light system to ensure SLA’s are achieved
+ Improved cashflow
+ Paperless billing saves postage
+ Future focused business and brand

Person holding phone

Payment Portals and App

Make it easy for your clients to pay bills and statements with your own branded client portal and app. The portal and app integrates with your software and automates the entire process giving you complete transparency and streamlining of billings, payments and reminders.

+ Improved cashflow
+ Automate bills and reminders
+ Reduce your carbon footprint with paperless billing
+ Easier way to pay
+ Integrated solution with your software
+ Future proof your business
+ Exceed your client expectations

Lift buttons

Service Management

For Block Managers who need to manage services within your portfolio, our software will help manage this often complex task. Whether it’s concierge facilities, fire safety, lifts or gym facilities, CPL’s software will ensure you stay ahead of deadlines. You can utilise information and data to predict future trends and take relevant action to reduce risk.

+ Set and receive reminders
+ Liaise with suppliers automatically
+ Automatically communicate visits, works or predicted repairs to clients efficiently by email or automated mailing
+ Instruct repairs and maintenance proactively by using data to predict future trends
+ Track, trace and achieve SLA’s with easy to use traffic light system

People at a desk

Insurance and Claims

Automate your insurance bills and statements replacing a manual process with a streamlined solution.

+ Communicate easily with clients
+ Automate insurance billing
+ Peace of mind for you and your clients

Property Maintenance

Drill

Repairs and Maintenance Made Easy with Blockworx

Automate your repairs and maintenance processes and go digital with Blockworx – the easy way for contractors and Block Managers to work together.

This ‘full circle’ approach to managing this often complex and time consuming task makes the entire process smooth and seamless. From requesting quotes through to final invoices, the entire process will be brought online in one place.

+ Send and receive tenders automatically
+ Distribute quotes, organize voting and instruct work as a joined up process without manual intervention
+ Liaise with contractors and clients efficiently and easily
+ Provide 24/7 communication with portal and app
+ Send and receive invoices automatically
+ Fully integrated contractor and repairs and maintenance management

Man holding tablet

Health and Safety

Conduct your routine health and safety inspections and produce reports online. No need to deal with soggy paperwork and eliminate double input of work when returning from the field to the office.

+ Inspection app tailored to specific report requirements
+ Sign and send emails to all relevant parties
+ Integrates with CPL to send reminders and notifications
+ Reduces risks – insurance, health and safety and business
+ Improves business processes
+ No WiFi or 4G/5G required

Top of buildings

Site Visits/Statutory Testing/Building Surveying

Conduct property inspections and surveys quickly and easily with our easy to use app. Create your own bespoke reports that you can send to recipients instantly.

+ Upload photos instantly
+ No more soggy paper and pens
+ Improved efficiencies and time savings
+ Transparency of information
+ Email to all relevant parties as soon as the report is generated
+ No WiFi or 4G/5G required

Sustainability

Buildings green trees

Sustainability 

If your business is moving towards being more sustainable, we can help you. Reduce paper in your office, encourage your clients to choose paperless billing and implement initiatives throughout your property portfolio with an online solution.

+ Paperlight office with electronic filing and document management
+ Introduce paperless billing
+ Implement and manage initiatives across your portfolio
+ Cost savings with less postage, less paper, less statationery and less time

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TAILORED SOLUTIONS FOR SOCIAL LANDLORDS

People at a desk

Corporate and Governance

With strict regulations and compliance, effective and strong corporate governance is crucial in a housing association in order to meet these standards. All housing associations must comply with frameworks set by their industry body. CPL Software will provide the relevant infrastructure needed to achieve this.

+ Deliver higher levels of governance with improved automated processes
+ Easy to use, specialist software for property factoring and block management
+ Achieve organisational efficiencies to comply with rules, regulations and industry standards
+ Traffic light system to help track and trace SLA’s

Women on laptop

Customer Service

Most Social Landlords will have a customer service commitment that they must adhere to. These will generally take the format of what standards customers can expect when they interact with employees in the organisation. Your new software will  help facilitate customer facing and customer focussed staff to achieve or exceed expectations by  following standardised procedures and processes.

+ Preparation of rental reviews
+ Effective maintenance and provision of service contracts
+ Smoother payments with an online payment service and branded app
+ 24/7 communication
+ Improved cashflow
+ Paperless billing saves postage
+ Future focused social organisation

Drill

Repairs and Maintenance

Ensuring your tenants and customer’s are safe and secure is an essential part of being a social landlord. Responding to repair and maintenance requests in a timely and efficient manner will help you to provide an exceptional level of service.

+ Liaise with contractors and clients efficiently and easily
+ Provide 24/7 communication with portal and app
+ Send and receive invoices automatically
+ Fully integrated contractor and repairs and maintenance management

Pointing at post it notes

Finance and Accounts

Manage all finances coming in and out of the organisation at the touch of a button. Improve your governance and management information and automate manual processes to save time and money.

This part of the system deals with all of your accounting including budgeting, credit control, purchase ledger and financial accounts.

+ Preparation of service charge budgets and financial forecasts
+ Automated Service Charge billing and reminders
+ Preparation of year-end accounts and returns
+ Automated year end statements
+ Full accounting service and liaison with Auditors including Tax advice
+ View graphs to review performance throughout the year
+ Upload and send invoices
+ Credit control
+ Set reminders
+ Manage debtors

Man holding tablet

Health and Safety

Conduct routine health and safety inspections and produce reports online. No need to deal with soggy paperwork anymore. And your team will eliminate double input of work when returning from the field to the office.

+ Inspection app tailored to specific report requirements
+ Sign and send emails to all relevant parties
+ Integrates with CPL to send reminders and notifications
+ Reduces risk
+ Improves business processes
+ No WiFi or 3G required

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BLOCKWORX FOR CONTRACTORS

Person holding phone

Visibility for Your Business with Blockworx from CPL Software

If you’re a contractor who currently works with Property Factors or Block Managers, Blockworx from CPL Software will automate your repairs and maintenance contracts and communications.

  • View hundreds of jobs posted by Property Factors and Block Managers instantly and easily, expanding your geographic reach and giving you more opportunities;
  • Submit estimates for every job you want to quote for at the click of a button;
  • Receive responses and communicate with Property Factors and Block Managers in one place making it easy to track progress;
  • Accept jobs and move the process forwards using Blockworx;
  • Keep Property Factors and Block Managers informed of progress – upload photographs or advise of delays or complications;
  • At the end of the job, you can seamlessly submit your invoices for payment and stay on top of when payments are received;
  • Sign up easily on the Blockworx website – coming soon. Or speak to the Property Factors or Block Managers you work with.

Not yet working with Property Factors or Block Managers?

If you are a repairs and maintenance contractor who doesn’t yet work with a Property Factor or Block Manager you can still sign up to Blockworx. Send us an email to find out more.

+ Send quotations and estimates easily and directly
+ Manage all your invoices online
+ Upload photos of your work to get paid quicker
+ Apportion payment schedules from deposit to final payment
+ Monitor work flows so you can raise invoices on time
+ View account information on your dashboard to manage

Tools on a table

Time Savings with Blockworx

Being able to communicate easily with Property Factors and Block Managers will make the process of running your business smoother and more efficient. Blockworx will save you time and effort with automated, online two way communication.

With Blockworx you will benefit from

+ Communications with Property Factors and Block Managers in one place
+ Stay on top of and track progress of tenders and invoice payments
+ View and submit tender quotes quickly and easily

If you would like to know more about how Blockworx will benefit your business, please drop us an email today.

Contactless payment

Faster Payments with Blockworx

Keeping cash flowing through your business is crucial for it’s survival. As your communications and workflows are managed by the Blockworx platform, payments should be made quicker and easier.

With Blockworx you will gain

+ Full visibility of outstanding invoices
+ Direct communication with Property Factors and Block Mangers if invoices are due or overdue
+ Automatic reminders when invoice payments are due

If you would like to know more about how Blockworx will benefit your business, please drop us an email today.

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