Why it’s better to keep accounting and property management software separate

Date Published : Aug-02-2021

Written By : Kim Brown

When it comes to property management, we are all for simpler processes and solutions. We designed Condo Control to help simplify communication, record-keeping and operations for boards and property managers. 

So, when we encourage people to keep their accounting software and their property management software separate, it might sound a little odd. Doesn’t that make things more complicated? An all-in-one solution seems like the obvious choice, but it may actually end up making your life more stressful in the long run. 

    

Why it’s hard to find a true all-in-one property management system

There are more than a few companies that offer 5-star property management software. The same is true for HOA or condo accounting software. But finding a solution that effectively tackles accounting and property management issues is not so easy.

If an organization includes accounting in their software platform, or property management tools to complement their accounting platform, one feature is generally much stronger than the other.

    

Accounting software 

Accounting software has come a long way. It used to be that only accountants or individuals with a financial background could master this software, but now there are robust programs designed specifically with average business owners in mind. Accounting software is used by property managers, boards, and accounting admins to streamline and organize income and expenses, including bill payments, taxes, payroll, online payments from owners, and budgets. It simplifies accounting and reduces human error by providing a user-friendly system for condos and HOAs to work from. 

Automate payments from owners

Most accounting software platforms will do the heavy lifting for associations when it comes to collecting fees, dues and other payments from owners. Admins can set up each unit or home as a customer so that monthly statements and invoices can be automatically issued. Owners can also authorize recurring expenses such as maintenance fees online, meaning fewer bank trips for you and more on-time payments for the association.

Flexible solutions

Small condo or HOA associations cannot afford to spend a lot each month on an accounting solution for 50 or fewer units. Thoughtful companies understand this, and offer a range of packages.

User-friendly

Accounting software is being designed for people who don’t have an accounting background. The best accounting software is simple, but still produces strong results. The reports feature is particularly useful as it allows users to see the association’s income and expenses, and how they change over months and years. Having these insights can assist with informed future planning and budgeting, and no one had to “crunch the numbers” to get those results.  

    

Property management software

Property management software helps condos and HOAs with communication, record-keeping, security, and day-to-day operations. Features may include service requests/work orders, a document library, owners’ portal, amenity booking, announcements/notifications, and parking management. There are dozens of different programs to choose from, so it’s important to identify your needs and wants first, and then see which of those programs can meet your requirements.

Better connectivity

Almost every association struggles with communication. Property management software bridges the communication gap between residents, boards and management. The software allows messages to be sent in minutes as opposed to days, and when new messages are available, owners are notified through email, text or automated voice message. As an added bonus, communities end up saving money on print and mailing costs.

Simple record-keeping solutions

Cloud-based property management software takes all of those paper architectural change requests, invoices, meeting minutes, incident reports, estimates, etc., and organizes them. Every document can be stored and saved on the platform, and permissions can be set to make files available to everyone, or only a select group of people. The best part is you can locate any file in seconds by performing a quick keyword search.  

Customized security and concierge features  

Security and concierge are being asked to do more with the same resources, so property management software can really help them make the best use of their limited time. Many online software systems are equipped to create time-saving processes for package tracking, visitor parking, incident reporting and key tracking. Instead of manually completing repetitive tasks to process deliveries or document information, security and concierge can use property management software to automate tasks. This software helps your entire team thrive.   

    

Integration creates a seamless experience  

Now that you see what these two software products are designed to do, you can see why it is challenging to make one platform with exceptional accounting and communication, record-keeping and security functionalities. That’s not to say that it cannot be done, but it doesn’t happen often. 

So, what’s the solution here? Managing two separate software systems isn’t exactly simple. Integration is the answer.

We said earlier that we’re all for simpler processes and solutions, which is why Condo Control integrates with leading accounting software systems. Our integration capabilities mean condos and HOAs can enjoy the very best of both worlds. Plus, management can cut down own their own admin work; when financial changes and updates are made to owner or resident profiles on the accounting platform, those changes are also reflected in Condo Control. Some platforms even allow for two-way sync. This allows you to have up-to-date data, no matter which platform you’re using.

    

Why choose one when you can have both

When boards or managers elect to have two systems, one for accounting and one for other property management tasks, they get the benefit of having two top-performing tools. Each system has its strengths, and none of those good qualities have to be sacrificed. When the two systems work together, management saves time because they do not have to enter financial data into two separate systems. They may only need to log in to one platform to complete all of their tasks.

Having accounting and property management software minimizes the potential for delays, setbacks and oversights. With the integration set up, the software moves information automatically, which gives you more time to focus on bigger goals.