Landlord comparing top 5 rental property management software solutions

Best Property Management Software in 2024

Depending on exactly what you need the software to do, and how much it will cost, the best property management software solution for you may be different from another landlord. 

To help you sort out the details and make the best decision possible, we broke down the price points, features, and considerations to help you identify a product that will deliver the support you need at a value you can afford.

To start, we’ll go over why you should use the best property management software to help you run your business in the first place, the critical features to look out for, and finally, a detailed overview of five of the best property management software solutions available today.

 

Simplify Your Rental Property Management for Free
Cheerful handsome man standing outdoors and using smartphone

Why Use Software for Property Management

Software for property management was created to streamline management tasks that landlords executed themselves or hired a property manager or management company to perform. 

Before companies created management software, DIY landlords had to complete almost every task manually. They’d meet their tenants in person to collect rent, or they’d have to screen tenants one by one. It all took a lot of time.  

Now, instead of going through the hassle of completing tasks by hand or overpaying property managers, landlords can capitalize on the advances in software over the past decade. 

With that in mind, let’s turn our attention to the features that enable increased productivity and simplified management.

Property Management Tools & Features

In the diverse landscape of real estate, property managers may find themselves overseeing a range of property types, from sprawling commercial spaces to single-family homes and multi-unit apartments. Given this variety, property management software must be multifaceted, providing specific functionalities that cater to the needs of each property type.

Property Types

  • Commercial Properties: For commercial spaces, software should offer robust lease administration, detailed expense tracking, and the ability to manage complex lease structures, including NNN leases and percentage rents. CAM reconciliation features and advanced reporting for financials and occupancy are also critical.
  • Single-Family Housing: When managing single-family homes, the focus shifts to maintenance tracking, tenant communication, and turnover management. The software should make it easy to schedule property showings, screen tenants, and manage individual property listings.
  • Multi-Family Housing: Multi-family units require software with the ability to manage multiple tenants within the same property. Features such as batch processing of rent payments, mass communication tools, and utility billing systems are essential.
  • Section 8 Housing: Managing Section 8 properties means dealing with government programs and compliance. Software for these properties should facilitate compliance reporting, rent reasonableness comparisons, and direct communication with housing authorities.
  • Apartments: Apartment management benefits from tenant portal features, where residents can pay rent, request maintenance, and communicate with property staff. Additionally, amenity booking systems and community event management can enhance tenant satisfaction.

Each property type offers unique challenges and requires specific software features to manage effectively. By choosing a property management software that caters to the distinct needs of commercial properties, single-family homes, multi-family units, Section 8 housing, and apartments, property managers can streamline their operations, ensure compliance, and provide excellent service to tenants, regardless of the property type they manage.

Common Property Management Features

  • Rent Payments: Choose online rent collection solutions built for property management. They keep detailed records of rent, track every payment, and send receipts automatically. 
  • Tenant Screening: Get rid of the paper and conduct thorough online tenant screenings from anywhere while protecting your applicants’ information. It’s free for landlords. 
  • Marketing Rental Properties: Instead of manually adding listings to individual listing sites, look for rental property managing software that lets you do it all at once. 
  • Handling Maintenance Requests: Instead of filtering through all these different notifications, the best property management software centralizes your requests and puts them into a single interface for easy management. Plus, it empowers tenants to take photos of what’s wrong and submit work orders to you themselves. 

Commercial Property Management with Specialized Software

Commercial property management demands a unique set of features from software solutions, given its complex nature involving multiple tenants, variable lease terms, and extensive maintenance needs. The best property management software for commercial properties should offer a comprehensive suite of tools to streamline operations, enhance tenant relations, and maximize revenue.

Key features to look for in commercial property management software include:

  • Advanced Lease Tracking: Commercial leases often have intricate details and conditions. Software that provides detailed lease tracking, including critical dates, rent escalations, and CAM (Common Area Maintenance) charges, is essential.
  • Operational Efficiency: Tools for managing day-to-day operations such as maintenance requests, service contracts, and vendor management can significantly reduce the workload for property managers.
  • Accounting and Reporting: Comprehensive financial management features that allow for tracking expenses, income, and generating detailed financial reports are a must. These should be compliant with standard accounting practices and provide insights for strategic decision-making.
  • Tenant Portal: A tenant portal where tenants can submit maintenance requests, access lease documents, and communicate with property managers can improve tenant satisfaction and retention rates.
  • Integrations: The software should integrate seamlessly with other tools such as building management systems, accounting software, and payment gateways to provide a unified platform for all property management tasks.

When evaluating software, consider how well it caters to the specific nuances of commercial property management. A tailored solution can not only save time but also provide a competitive edge in the dynamic market of commercial real estate.

Top 5 Property Management Software Solutions in 2024

Of the features laid out previously, each listed software solution contains a mix. Some specialize in specific areas more than others, and of course, some options are more expensive.

TurboTenant

Best All-In-One Free Option

TurboTenant offers an easy-to-understand pricing model. 

There’s the free tier, which includes access to some of the most critical aspects of the best property management software including rent collection, tenant screening, and property listing. 

Then, there’s the Premium tier. In the Premium tier, which costs less than $10 a month, landlords get the tools to become better landlords. For example, E-Signatures are included, enhanced Income Insights functionality offers a deeper look at tenant financial information, and landlords gain access to state-specific lease agreements so they stay compliant in every state they operate in. 

In short, it’s the best value out there, and it sure is cheaper than hiring a property management company. 

Pros

  • Easy to use
  • Cost-effective
  • State-specific leases provide peace of mind
  • Unlimited properties included in the free tier
  • Continuing landlord education gives you an edge 
  • Free online calculators help you make sound financial decisions
  • Colorado-based support team here to help 7 days a week
  • REI Hub integration imports bank transactions for easy expense categorization
  • Lease Agreement Audit AI Tool free for all landlords — not just TurboTenant customers

Cons

  • Rental accounting software isn’t free

Customer Reviews

  • Customers love how easy TurboTeant is to use
  • Users think that pre-screening tenants is easy
  • Reviewers agree that TurboTenant makes lease drafting simple
  • Reviewers find responsive customer service when they have questions
  • Users enjoy using the app
  • Some regret not receiving leads quickly, but configuration settings can make this process smoother

AppFolio

Ideal for Very Big Portfolios

If you manage a large number of doors, the solution for you might be AppFolio. 

You’ll see why after examining its Core tier. In the Core tier, each unit costs property managers $1.50 to manage, with a minimum monthly spend of $298. The cost includes access to:

  • Property accounting
  • Streamlined property marketing
  • Work order management
  • Online payments
  • Premium unit listings
  • Online leases
  • AppFolio’s standard support

Ultimately, however, AppFolio’s focus is on providing software for large-scale property management companies that work with a range of property types, from multifamily, student housing, affordable housing, and commercial real estate. 

To access affordable housing features, you’ll need to step up to its Plus or Max tiers. Plus starts at a minimum of $960 a month. That price includes access to advanced leasing metrics, corporate accounting, flexible reporting, and bulk actions. 

To get everything AppFolio offers in the Max tier, you’ll have to spend $7500 a month minimum. For a deeper look at how TurboTenant compares to AppFolio, click here.

Pros:

  • Built for large-scale operations
  • Scales quickly
  • Streamlined accounting
  • Bulk tenant charges
  • Excellent financial analysis tools
  • Top commercial property management software on the list

Cons:

  • Expensive
  • Lacking customer service
  • Not built for small portfolios
  • Not focused on continued landlord education
  • No state-specific leases

Customer Reviews:

  • Users agree that the user interface is easy to use
  • Reviewers like how comprehensive AppFolio is
  • AppFolio clients like that it efficiently organizes tenants, vendors, and owners
  • Some users wish AppFolio had more integrations

Buildium

Top Choice for HOA Management

While AppFolio’s focus appears to be on large-scale property management companies, Buildium seems to be aimed at small—and medium-scale property managers who work with HOAs and similar organizations.

This distinction is reflected in its pricing tiers. Buildium’s Essential tier starts at $55 a month and scales to $375/month for its Premium option. It’s a far cry from the upper levels of AppFolio’s pricing. 

For the listed prices, landlords can manage up to 20 units. More units drive the cost up in every tier. 

Once paid, investors who choose Buildium will find access to the most critical features included in this software segment. 

Features you can expect include: 

  • Accounting
  • Maintenance management
  • Online portals
  • HOA communication between owners, residents, non-resident owners, and board members

However, you’ll need to pay additional charges to access new client leads, and it costs $99 for each bank account you link.

Check out TurboTenant vs. Buildium for more. 

Pros:

  • 14-day trial requires no credit card
  • Showings Coordinator helps automate scheduling
  • Retail cash payments make paying rent easier for tenants
  • EZMail simplifies document mailing
  • Works with Commercial Properties

Cons:

  • Several extra charges make budgeting tricky
  • Scaled pricing structure changes cost as doors are added
  • You have to pay extra if you use multiple bank accounts

Customer Reviews:

  • Customers like that Buildium helps them grow
  • Reviewers like how easy it is to use
  • Users like that tenants can boost their credit scores with on-time payments
  • Reviewers wish they could add pets easier
  • Customers wish they could integrate Buildium with accounting software

Landlord Studio

Best Accounting-Focused Software

If you want to company that puts a lot of emphasis on accounting in their core product, then Landlord Studio might be a good fit. 

That’s not to say LandLord Studio doesn’t offer a range of property management tools. You’ll find:

  • Application management
  • Tenant screening
  • Online rent collection
  • Property maintenance

After looking over their feature set, you find what you’d expect from property management software, but it’s clear that Landlord Studio empasizes accounting functionality.

In their Go tier, which is basically the entry level, Landlord Studio includes a feature you won’t find in the others: a free GPS mileage tracker to help you calculate your mileage at tax time. 

Upgrading to the Pro tier allows you to manage three units for $12 a month. Every additional unit costs a dollar. Most interestingly, however, LandLord Studio features automated bank syncing that can automatically suggest expenses pulled from your bank account.

It’s not as much of an all-in-one solution as the others, but it’s worth a look if you’re a small landlord focused on accounting. 

Pros:

  • Interesting accounting focus
  • Free tier available
  • Relatively inexpensive paid tier
  • Easy to use

Cons:

  • Limited expense tracking in the free tier
  • No rent reminders in the free tier
  • Limited document storage in the free tier
  • No e-signatures at the time of writing
  • No customizable lease agreements at the time of writing

DoorLoop

Best for Small Mixed Portfolios

For the final company on our list of the top property managers software available today, we found that DoorLoop offered a compelling option.

DoorLoop offers a wide range of management features for various real estate industry property types including commercial properties. 

In the Starter tier, landlords can manage up to 20 properties for $59 a month, billed yearly. If you add more units, you’ll pay a higher fee. In the Starter tier, you’ll get:

  • Accounting and financial access
  • Somewhat limited maintenance 
  • Online rent payments 
  • Tenant screening
  • Prospect CRM

Stepping up to the Pro tier, users gain online marketing, bank account conciliation, and QuickBooks sync. Finally, with Premium, users get access to unlimited e-signatures and data storage as well as free incoming ACH payments. 

For a deeper understanding, be sure to visit TurboTenant vs DoorLoop.

Pros:

  • Easy to use
  • Allows management of multiple property types
  • QuickBooks integration if that’s your accounting software

Cons:

  • Costs add up quickly
  • Starter tier doesn’t include marketing

Customer Reviews:

  • Customers like how easy DoorLoop is to use
  • Reviewers like DoorLoop’s customer service
  • Users find that DoorLoop’s costs rise sharply with additional units

Empowering Landlords and Real Estate Investors with Advanced Management Software

Landlords and real estate investors require property management software that offers not just operational capabilities but also strategic insights. The right software can make a significant difference in how investment properties are managed, directly impacting profitability and growth potential.

Essential features for landlords and real estate investors include:

  • Portfolio Management: A centralized dashboard to view all properties, track their performance, and monitor investment health is crucial for keeping a pulse on your real estate portfolio.
  • Investment Analysis: Tools that provide real-time analytics and forecast returns, enabling investors to make data-driven decisions about acquisitions, renovations, and sales.
  • Automated Financial Operations: Features like auto-generated invoices, rent collection, and expense tracking reduce administrative tasks and improve financial accuracy.
  • Document Management: A secure platform for storing and managing all property-related documents, including leases, warranties, and insurance policies, ensures that crucial information is easily accessible.
  • Communication Tools: Efficient communication channels between landlords, tenants, and property managers facilitate smoother operations and tenant relations.

For landlords and real estate investors, the right property management software is more than a convenience—it’s a vital component of their business strategy. It should not only simplify property management tasks but also provide valuable insights that contribute to making informed investment decisions.

By selecting a software solution that aligns with their goals, landlords and real estate investors can optimize their operations, enhance tenant satisfaction, and drive their investment portfolios towards greater success.

Why TurboTenant is the Best Choice for Property Management in 2024

TurboTenant is the best property management software because it has all the features you need to manage your properties from a single location for free. As you grow your portfolio, you can hire a property manager to keep everything in order or confidently do it yourself from your computer or phone. 

While property managers charge anywhere from 8% to 12% of your monthly rental income, you can sign up for TurboTenant Premium and get access to all of TurboTenant for one low annual cost

Compared to ongoing monthly payments, using software built to help you do the job yourself makes sense. Here are list of popular features and how they compare to TurboTenant. 

FeatureTurboTenantAppFolioBuildiumLandlord StudioDoorLoop
PricingFREE OR Premium Option$29.99/unit/90 days$84/unit/yrDepends on Local Market$708/yr
Marketing / AdvertisingRequires UpgradeRequires Upgrade
50+ Syndication Partners
Finding Tenants
Customizable Online Application
Automatic Pre-Screener
Tenant Management36 States
Tenant Check-Ins
Rent Payments
AutoPay
Automatic Late Fees
One-time & Recurring Charges
Landlord Education & Community
Private Landlord Group
Weekly Newsletter
Free Webinars

For landlords who want to get the most out of their investments, TurboTenant is the clear-cut winner. 

Sign up today and see what TurboTenant can do for you. 

FAQ

How much do property management programs cost?

Depending on the solution you choose, the right rental software could cost you nothing. You’ll have to consider your specific needs to determine whether choosing software with a hefty up-front fee will provide the tools you need to manage your properties effectively. 

If you want to streamline your operations immediately without paying a cent, try TurboTenant.

What does property manager software do?

It facilitates the streamlined management of rental properties by offering lease and tenant management tools, maintenance tracking, and financial oversight. It provides a centralized platform for organizing lease agreements, handling maintenance requests, and tracking rental income and expenses. Additionally, it often integrates online portals for tenant communication, allowing for efficient rent collection and maintenance coordination.

What solutions integrate with QuickBooks?

Property management software that integrates with QuickBooks includes Buildium, Rent Manager, AppFolio, Propertyware, DoorLoop, and Yardi. Although QuickBooks is the most popular accounting software, it lacks many features that rental property owners find especially useful, such as the ones that REI Hub has tailored for landlords.

What is cloud-based software?

Cloud-based software like TurboTenant operates on remote servers, so you can access it from anywhere with an internet connection. It provides tools for lease management, maintenance tracking, and accounting within a centralized online platform. By leveraging cloud technology, property managers streamline operations, improve accessibility, and benefit from automated updates and data backups.

Most Popular Posts

Interested in streamlining your rental process?

TurboTenant makes managing your property simple with features like one-click rental marketing, extensive online applications, and free credit & background checks for landlords.

Newsletter SignUp

TheKey is the weekly newsletter for landlords, by landlords.

Subscribe to get tips, news, and hacks for even the most seasoned landlords.

TurboTenant Blog

Read Our Latest Articles

Colorado Landlord Insurance

Whether you’re renting out a single-family home or an apartment dwelling, landlord insurance is essential in Colorado. It offers much-needed coverage if something were to

Join the 650,000+ independent landlords who rely on TurboTenant to create welcoming rental experiences.

No tricks or trials to worry about. So what’s the harm? Try it today!