The Property Management Trends of 2018
The Property Management Trends of 2018

The Property Management Trends of 2018

The new year is almost here, and for property managers now is the time to prepare for 2018. With that in mind, here are a few of the property management apps, technologies, and overall trends to watch for in 2018.


(Links are in bold)

2018 will be the year of the property app

Properties are now learning from apps what they once learned from creating websites. Just as property managers saw the evolution of the website and its impact on their business, the same will soon be true for property management apps. Apps that once started as luxuries will now become necessities.

It’s difficult to imagine a property not having a website, right? Soon it will be difficult to imagine a property not have an app. Going into 2018, the app is king. Here’s a little of what you should know:

Based off of the evolution of the website, here are some safe bets on what a property management app should feature:

• A clean and intuitive navigation
• Tools for both prospective and current residents — providing direct marketing exposure to residents and allowing for guest authorization (without a written binder)
• Ability to check apartment availability and book tours
• Instant messaging for residents to communicate directly with staff
• A hub for maintenance requests and emergency alerts

Think of it this way: While all of the features above can make your property more efficient, a property management app takes things a step further by becoming a marketable amenity itself.
Just as residents come to expect physical amenities like communal outdoor space, they will also come to expect a useful, time-saving app.

The industry is seeing a shift from physical to service-based amenities and an app will become both a recruiting tool and a selling point. Residents continue to spend a great percentage of time on their smartphones as opposed to their computer. It’s much more effective to reach a resident on a platform they’re using more often.

Getting started with your property’s app

You don’t need a development team in order to create a great app. Companies that specialize in property app design are great ways to get in on the app game. While your team considers your future user engagement, here are a few of our favorite services that build intuitive property apps.

Mobile Doorman

My Resident Linc

The adaption of the smart locker

Tech trends of 2018 will not only focus on software, such as apps, but on physical infrastructure as well. Property managers need to support their tech with smart physical amenities. In the coming year, properties will again face the growing challenge of package deliveries. UPS alone delivered more than 19 millions packages last year and this number is increasing every year.

Smart lockers are a physical solution to an ever-growing issue. They’re an example of how properties will adapt to the age of online shopping. For some properties, deliveries are straightforward, but for gated communities and those with a single drop-off point, lockers have become a necessity. Site teams need a new way to prioritize deliveries.

A digital locker system is an intuitive, marketable amenity. A package goes into a locker, the resident then receives a code and locker number and retrieves the package on their own time. A member of a site team does not need to be present. When the locker is emptied, it is then free to be used for the next delivery.

Smart lockers will coincide with another trend of 2018, the rise of non-traditional deliverers. USPS, FedEx, and UPS are already competing with companies like Uber and Amazon. It’s one thing to coordinate with a seasoned USPS driver, but when packages start arriving by drones, properties need to be prepared.

Generation Z is coming. What will these renters need?

The industry has been talking about millennials for years. While they will continue to be a focus in 2018, the next generation — Gen Z — is on the horizon. So, what do millennials and Gen Zers need?

Two major problems millennials face today are building their credit and protecting against fraud. If rental payments are not reported to the credit bureau, they don’t count toward a resident’s credit score. Residents need a reliable way to build their credit and be rewarded for making timely payments on their rent.

Trends are showing that 2018 will have more renters than in 2017 and millennials will make up an even larger portion of that market. Whether renting or buying, millennials and Gen Zers will need to protect themselves from the growing threat of identity theft and credit fraud. This is where property management companies can truly help out their residents in the coming year.
A solution that addresses both of the above concerns are services like Resident-Link. Resident-Link offers fraud protection through credit monitoring and will report resident rental payments to the credit bureaus. So, while it safeguards residents against credit fraud, it also reports their rental payments to assist them in building their credit.

Currently, millennials are more likely to fall victim to tax and fraud scams than senior citizens. With the growing trend of identity theft and fraud, residents are more aware of the problem and will appreciate the added protection offered by their property management company.

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