Thought Leadership
Enhancing Resident Experience Through PropTech: A Guide for Multifamily Property Owners

This blog is part three of our series for multifamily owners on dealing with expense inflation. You can access Part 1 (Expense Containment) here, and Part 2 (Revenue Optimization) here.

The world of property management technology (proptech) is overflowing with options for multifamily owners. Technology offers many opportunities to improve operational efficiency and enhance the resident experience. The cost savings and additional revenue that are available can go a long way toward offsetting the sting of expense inflation that California property owners are currently feeling.

But this abundance is a double-edged sword, as many owners find themselves overwhelmed and paralyzed by the sheer number of choices. In this blog, we cover the essential proptech categories that multifamily owners today should consider for supporting and optimizing their businesses.

Resident Communication & Self-Serve Portal

Effective communication is the cornerstone of resident satisfaction. Traditional methods like phone calls and paper notices are becoming obsolete, replaced by digital communication tools that offer efficiency and convenience. The modern self-serve portal is a perfect example of how proptech can revolutionize resident communication.

A self-serve portal allows residents to access essential information and services at their convenience. This portal can host a variety of features, including:

  • Online Rent Payment: Residents can pay their rent online, view their payment history, and set up automatic payments, reducing the likelihood of late payments.
  • Community Announcements: Property managers can post updates and announcements, ensuring all residents receive timely information.
  • Service Requests: Residents can submit and track maintenance requests, improving transparency and reducing response times.
  • Document Access: Important documents, such as lease agreements and community policies, can be stored and accessed online.

By implementing a self-serve portal, you provide residents with a convenient, 24/7 resource, reducing the administrative burden on your staff and enhancing the overall resident experience.

Digital Maintenance Workflows

Maintenance issues are inevitable in multifamily properties, but the way they are handled will have a huge impact on resident satisfaction. Digital maintenance workflows streamline the process from start to finish, ensuring issues are resolved promptly and efficiently, and keeping residents in the loop throughout the process.

With a digital maintenance system, residents submit requests through an online portal or mobile app. The system then assigns the request to the appropriate maintenance personnel, who can update the status in real time. This transparency allows residents to track the progress of their requests and know when to expect resolution.

Digital maintenance systems also offer the following benefits:

  • Prioritize Urgent Requests: Automatically prioritize emergency issues, ensuring they are addressed promptly.
  • Schedule Preventive Maintenance: Track routine maintenance tasks and schedule them automatically to prevent larger issues.
  • Maintain Records: Keep detailed records of all maintenance activities, which can be useful for future planning and budgeting.

By digitizing maintenance workflows, you can provide faster, more efficient service, which boosts resident satisfaction and reduces downtime for critical systems.

Data Management & Security

In the age of digital transformation, data management and security are a major concern for everyone. Property owners handle sensitive information, from personal resident data to financial records, making robust data management and security practices essential.

Investing in a reliable property management software that prioritizes data security can safeguard your residents’ information. Key features to look for include:

  • Data Encryption: Ensure that all data, whether at rest or in transit, is encrypted to prevent unauthorized access.
  • Access Controls: Implement role-based access controls to restrict data access to authorized personnel only.
  • Regular Backups: Schedule regular data backups to prevent loss in case of hardware failure or cyberattacks.
  • Compliance: Ensure the software complies with relevant data protection regulations, such as GDPR or CCPA.

By prioritizing data management and security, you protect your residents’ privacy and build trust, which is crucial for long-term retention.

Prospect Management & Self-Show Optimization

Self-show technology offers the dual benefits of convenience and lower administrative burden. Prospective residents have more flexibility in when they can tour units, and it’s one more duty that’s off your plate.

Self-show technology typically involves:

  • Automated Scheduling: Prospects can schedule tours online at their convenience, reducing the back-and-forth of coordinating with leasing agents.
  • Smart Locks: Temporary access codes can be generated for prospects, ensuring secure access to the property.
  • Virtual Tours: For those who prefer remote viewing, virtual tours can be integrated, allowing prospects to explore units from the comfort of their homes.

This technology not only enhances the prospect experience but also frees up your leasing team to focus on other important tasks. By offering self-show options, you can attract more prospects and convert them faster, filling vacancies more efficiently.

IoT Access Controls

The Internet of Things (IoT) has opened up new possibilities for multifamily properties, particularly in the realm of access control. Smart access control systems offer enhanced security and convenience for both residents and property managers.

Smart access control systems can include:

  • Keyless Entry: Residents can use their smartphones or key fobs to enter the building and their units, reducing the risk of lost keys.
  • Visitor Management: Residents can grant temporary access to visitors, service providers, or delivery personnel, enhancing convenience and security.
  • Access Logs: Property managers can monitor access logs to ensure security and quickly respond to any issues.

Implementing IoT-based access controls not only enhances security but also offers a modern, tech-savvy appeal that can attract new residents.

How Can PropTech Enhance Your Business?

These are far from the only proptech solution categories on the market, but for most multifamily owners, these are the solutions that we recommend considering first. PropTech has graduated from a “nice-to-have” to a “must-have,” so if you haven’t given strong consideration to this side of your business, now is the time.

Don’t be afraid to reach out if you have questions. As an experienced Southern California property manager, we’re proud to serve as a resource for property owners throughout the region. If you have any questions about incorporating proptech into your business or would like to learn more about how Fairgrove can help you, contact us today and we’ll respond ASAP.

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