People become entrepreneurs because they want the freedom of calling their own shots. But keeping up with all the aspects of an investing enterprise or other new business can be daunting. That’s why investors and mall business owners are inundated with advertising for new software packages that claim to streamline operations with a click of a mouse. Unless you’re determined to follow in the footsteps of previous generations and manage your affairs with pen and paper and ledger books, sifting through the options to find the right software for your investing business needs can save time and money.
Accounting packages keep the books tidy, while
real estate programs can calculate the value of property and generate statistic on market trends. Smaller versions track rents, income and expenditures and generate documents such as leases and terminations. The market changes constantly so we won’t recommend specific software suites – just a few things to keep in mind when shopping for computer tools to make investment managing easier.
Faced with the dizzying array of products promising to do everything but cook your breakfast, it”s essential to have a clear idea of what you need — before you buy. Software is available to manage taxes, handle general accounting and print forms such as leases and rental agreements. Complete systems integrate all these functions, but you may need only a few of them. With mobile apps for smart phones and tablets all key functions can be at your fingertips wherever you are.
With options ranging from high-end management suites packed with features to simple accounting programs and free downloadable accounting apps, there are tools for every need, It’s important, though, to consider not just your current needs but also future requirements. Watch for programs that are expandable and upgradeable – that saves the expense of buying another system as your investment projects expand.
Unless you’re willing to invest hours in trainings, or turn the whole project over to your local computer nerd, it’s wise to look for packages that are ready to go straight from the box, with clear instructions for the non-techie and reliable support you can call on any time. Low cost accounting software and free management downloads won’t offer the kind of tech support or information you need
to get up to speed.
The right software can make an investor’s job easier in many ways and keeps the enterprise looking professional, especially if multiple properties are involved. By automating tasks, keeping records organized and tracking expenses, a good software suite designed specifically to meet the needs of income property investors can save time and money well beyond the initial investment. Plus, as an expenditure related to the investment business, it may be tax-deductible too.
Investors following Jason Hartman’s investing guidelines know that building wealth from income property depends partly on getting the support you need from qualified advisers. The right software to manage the business of your investments can eliminate stress, free up time and save some money to keep income flowing smoothly from the properties you own. (Top image: Flickr/safir_26)
The American Monetary Association Team