Important Property Management Documents
Documentation doesn’t get much respect in business, yet in property management, good documentation is not only profitable, it’s also required by law.
In a digital property management world, everything is documents. The top property management documents are ones related to the smooth operation of business, responsibilities of landlords and tenants (HOA members too) and legal liabilities.
Using a digital property management software platform, such as ManageCasa™ it’s so easy to manage all your property management documents. No paperwork, few ink signatures, no omissions and errors, and quickened, automated work processes. That offers real business value and can affect profitability.
All Kinds of Documents are Used
Property managers utilize a variety of documentation in the course of conducting business. We all know of the standard documents such as applications, leases, inspection sheets, income statements, rental agreements, insurance policies.
Yet other documents exist that might be more important to our business such as service agreements, confidentiality agreements, disclosure statements, landlord notice to enter, consent to sublease, late rent notice, notice to evict, pet addendums, and more.
Documents are important and today, increasingly, the writing, transmission and signing of documents are automated. Some documents such as leases actually act to control accounting to attribute to expenses and revenue to the right accounts.
You are legally responsible for managing your documents and keeping them secure. Having them accessible on a private server or local hard drive presents significant liability. That’s why cloud property management is so popular now — efficiency, availability, and security.
Strict Regulatory Requirements Make Digital Documentation Essential
While documents define responsibilities and accountability, they help to limit liability. The devil’s in the details too, as when accidents happen and insurance claims are made, or when an eviction process must be followed to the letter of the law and documented over time.
From the initial rental agreement, background check, and the rental lease, these documents must be completed accurately, updated and made quickly accessible. And yes, that means immediately and securely accessible to landlords and property managers remotely located using mobile devices. The cloud is where they’re stored and access is controlled.
For instance, landlords and property managers use the digital signature function to have tenants and other parties signoff on maintenance, permissions, and receipt of documents. More and more, digital documents drive property management.
So while paper documents are still in use, increasingly the industry is adopting digital documentation and signing solutions. Managers and tenants don’t often meet face to face. The cost of travel, time to travel, health threats and safety issues mean landlords want to manage via online technology tools. It’s the only way you can operate at scale.
ManageCasa’s Amazing Documentation Tools
ManageCasa, as an example, has a lot of this digital documentation functionality built in, and it aids the full time saving power of the complete solution.
With ManageCasa, you’ll have access to a general form of many documents which you can customize to your specific needs, and of course you can design and write your own from scratch, providing checkable form fields, for end users.
The lease document and unit inspection forms are two good examples where users/tenants simply click acceptance of statements and click the digital signature item. Photos and other items can be attached.
Digital documentation is a key to rental property management profitability. The time waste with manual paper processes can be very costly.
And the term asynchronous is key since it means flexibility in execution, so tenants can do their part (inspections, lease review and signing, paying rent) when they’re able to. If issues happen, tenants can contact immediately via the tenant mobile app, text a cell number or contact a service rep.
The wonderful thing is that online documents can contain self help features which means the work of administration is downloaded to the tenant thus saving huge amounts of time and disruption for landlords, property managers and leasing agents.
What are the Top 7 Documents in Property Management?
- Property Management Company Service Agreement – this is the contract with service responsibilities, time commitments, pricing, and other items that govern your business relationship. Verbal contracts invite a lot of misunderstanding, but when written intelligently in a contract agreement, it clarifies responsibilities and boundaries. Good contracts define boundaries and roles, avoid gaps, deadlocks and inaction, set work and financial expectations, and help ensure work is completed.
- Tenant Rental Application – this is a declaration of the renters identity which allows landlords and property managers to ensure the renter is genuine and acceptable. It includes essential verifiable people, dates, events, and relationships relevant to you as a property owner. The contents help you make good business decisions.
- Lease Agreements – Upon acceptance of the rental application, the tenants completes the lease agreement you have created on ManageCasa. The lease is a legal document and any weaknesses and legal loopholes in it must be discovered and resolved. The document specifies in detail the vital points of liability and responsibility. In courts, rent due, deposit repayment, inspections and damage liability and more are used by a judge to resolve disagreements.
- Renters Inspection Report – the inspection checklist is important for incoming and outgoing tenants so they note and take responsibility for damage to the property. Other than wear and tear, it helps identify items that could be costly such as broken doors, windows, floor boards, and safety issues. Safety items not tended to could lead to costly law suits.
- Disclosure Statements – these documents completed by tenants, help to limit your company’s liability in the case of an injury. For instance, tenants sign off on important issues such as the potential existence of physical dangers and non-operational equipment, lead-based paint hazards, elevator and HVAC breakdowns, and bug infestations.
- Renters Insurance Agreement – increasingly renters must carry renters insurance policies which ensures their own personal belongings are covered in case of fire, floods, break-ins, or other unfortunate events. When tenants lose their belongings in a fire or flood, they may resort to filing suit against the landlord or property management company.
- Landlord’s Notice to Enter – keeping an eye on the property as well as arranging for access to rental units for maintenance and repair work necessitates a legal document specifying right to access and time to notify the tenant. Without this document, maintenance work may be delayed which is costly.
There are many more documents managed in your accounting, maintenance software such as rent due, and evictions that are important too. Some are specialized, but necessary, which you’ll be creating and managing digitally within the ManageCasa platform.
It’s just one more reminder of how valuable digital document management solutions are to keep work flowing, protecting against losses, and optimizing accounting.
You might realize that modern property management is the flow of completing documents, storing and transferring them.
I hope you have a newfound respect for documentation as you build your property management company or take on new properties as a landlord. Good documentation means no surprises and more profit.
Check out the full ManageCasa document management app and discovery how it integrates in the full solution for property managers. There’s never been a better time to switch to a better Property Management Software.
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