To run a real estate investing business, you’re always on the go and often rely on convenience within your smartphone to perform your daily tasks. We utilize a lot of apps and websites to help us out on a day-to-day basis. We’ve compiled a list of all the apps and websites we look to, and why it’s so vital to our business.
We use Scanner Pro to scan directly from our smartphones. All you have to do is take a picture of the paper copy you’re trying to scan, and it converts that image into a clear PDF document that you can upload to Dropbox, Drive, and send in an email.
This app is extremely useful because we use it to make calls and send texts from a number that is separate from our personal numbers. It’s easy to keep our lives organized and keep business life separated from personal by using Google Voice.
Slack is now utilized universally throughout our office to keep in contact with each other in one central location. You can use Slack’s group messaging feature to send announcements, automated reminders to the group, have a group conversation, as well as message individual people directly. You can also use it as a personal notepad and reminder system. It has a ton of features that we are still getting acclimated with, but we highly recommend this app for your phone and desktop for any office setting.
Wikipedia describes Podio as “a cloud-based collaboration service. It supplies a web-based platform for organizing team communication, business processes, data and content in project management workspaces.”. Available on Desktop and Mobile. It’s free for the first 5 users so it’s a no brainer when it comes to a CRM system for us. We also use it to track rental leads, our properties in transition, hiring, utilities at properties, and much more!
Zillow is an online real estate database and a must-have tool for investors. You get access to information on properties in pre-foreclosure, foreclosure, auctions, as well as residential and multi-family properties for sale. You can find value estimations using the “Zestimate” and use their calculators to estimate purchasing costs.
Trulia is similar to Zillow, but has a few different useful tools. A couple of our employees use Trulia to estimate rental prices when researching an area or specific property. Our acquisition guy searched the crime map to make sure we are purchasing in low crime areas.
“Dotloop replaces your form creation, e-sign, and real estate transaction management systems with a single end-to-end solution. It eliminates the paperwork in real estate transactions and provides a streamlined process.” We use Dotloop daily for property management, acquisitions, and listing our flips for sale on the MLS. Learn more about Dotloop Here.
Google Drive has served as a central location for all of the documents, images, and videos we have of flips, rental properties, and content to post online. We have a lot of different folders to keep us organized, with folders and folders within those folders. Everything is so easily accessible from the web and your smartphone. Google’s document and spreadsheet applications can all be found in Google Drive where we can actively edit and share documents among employees in our office, all while being able to have private folders and edit projects on your own.
The MLS is a wonderful tool for real estate investors. Someone from our team is in there almost daily, whether they’re in acquisitions, property management, or rehab. We can easily pull comps for properties we are buying or selling. Our listing agent and acquisitions assistant look at past listings properties to see when, if any, updates were made. Past listings usually still have pictures, show neighborhood activity, tax info, and extra details about the property that the seller may not have divulged. You don’t have to be a licensed real estate agent to access the MLS. HERE is a list of membership options for Columbus, Ohio.
The auditor’s website has a software that you can search by address, owner, and by the map to view the exact information about a property. This information includes the square footage of a property, lot size, year built, number of rooms, past purchase price, tax information and everything in between. The site includes a GIS mapping system that you can use to get information about neighboring properties.
The FEMA Flood Map Service Center website is a great resource for determining which properties are located within the various flood zone designations. This information is important because certain flood zone areas can significantly increase a monthly home insurance premiums.
Craigslist is great for 2 purposes. It's a great resource for finding FSBO/Off-Market properties as well as posting properties that you're looking to sell yourself. A lot of the posts are generated by wholesalers and investors, so it also serves as a great platform for networking and building rapport with those who you've never done business with.
We use Mailchimp to send out weekly and monthly emails to our email subscribers and tenants. Mailchimp has a lot of features on how you want to format your email or newsletter. It’s all drag and drop that is very customizable - you can add buttons to click on, add images and videos and more. After you send the email, Mailchimp creates a report of the email, which tells you exactly what your subscribers are clicking on and how many times they’re clicking. The report also gives information on how many opens, unsubscribes, and other data down to which email is performing what task and at what time. It packs in a lot of important information that you can use to better your email for the next time you send one.
We use EZ Texting in our Property Management department and in Acquisitions. We have found this is the most efficient way to contact rental leads who have reached out to us. We are able to track the texts that go out and can see how many were opened, unsubscribed, or went to a landline. We can update Podio from there. On the Acquisitions end, we use this app to reach out to our buyers list as well as for follow up with sellers.
“With GlobiFlow for Podio, you can automate key tasks and set up triggers for essential time-sensitive actions. GlobiFlow is so comprehensive that you are able to turn Podio into a much more sophisticated, dynamic, business management system.” As you have probably already noticed, our team LOVES Podio. Globiflow is essential for us and worth the extra cost per month for all of the automation options!
All of these apps come in handy just about everyday and we can’t imagine what we would do without these apps because they’re that important to us. We hope these apps help you and your business stay organized, stay in touch, and stay up to date. Thanks for reading and let us know in the comments if you use or plan to use any of these apps listed!