DGS 31: Why Your Property Management Business Needs a Mobile App

If you have ever thought that managing properties would be so much easier if there was just a mobile or iPhone app that connected to your property management software and linked to your website, your time has come. Today’s episode is all about a mobile app that does just that along with insights and more from the apps creator.

In this episode, I am talking with Evan Savar from MyResisentLiNC a software app that helps manage all aspects of property management from communication tools for residents to custom setup for property managers. They are currently focused on multifamily properties and connecting entire portfolios, but they are also starting to address specific residential needs. Evan shares all of this with us and more on today’s show.

You’ll Learn…

[02:11] About Evan and his background. He is from Las Vegas and has always been an entrepreneur.
[02:48] He created Evinar a live streaming tool for Facebook.
[03:23] He has always been interested in communities and community creation through technology. And he created a tool to connect communities in an apartment setting.
[04:43] MyResidentLiNC is an app that connects property management for all properties within a portfolio. Each community is run separately without having to create a custom app for each one. A flexible mobile app for customizing based on your area.
[06:51] Needs and technology are all over the board, but the app helps organize and aggregate all of the tools and needs.
[08:54] Meeting diverse needs and making it flexible and scalable.
[10:51] Some cool things they have done is integrate with Calendly and reduce print costs.
[15:24] How tools like this make sense once the 100 door barrier is broken.
[21:25] How time is a big challenge for property managers. Advantages of scaling without throwing people at it.

Tweetables

Resources

MyResidentLiNC

Transcript

Jason: Welcome DoorGrow Hackers to The DoorGrowShow. If you are a property management entrepreneur that wants to add doors, and expand your rent roll, and you are interested in growing your business and life, and you are open to doing things a bit differently, then you are a DoorGrow Hacker.

At DoorGrow, we are on a mission to grow property management businesses and their owners. We want to transform the industry, eliminate the BS, build awareness, expand the market, and help the best property managers win. If you enjoy this episode, do me a favor, open up iTunes, find the DoorGrowShow, subscribe, and then give us a real review. Thank you for helping us with that vision.

I’m your host, Property Management Growth Hacker, Jason Hull, the founder of OpenPotion, GatherKudos, ThunderLocal, and of course, DoorGrow. Now, let’s get into the show.

This is DoorGrow Show episode 31 and I’m here with Evan Savar in this from MyResidentLiNC. If you ever thought man, it would be so much easier if we just had a mobile app like an iPhone app and it was connected to our property management software, linked to our website, and linked to all these different things that we want out tenants and owners have access to then, you might really enjoy listening to today’s episode. Let’s get into the show.

We are live here on The DoorGrow Show. Jason Hull here from DoorGrow hanging out with Evan Savar from MyResidentLiNC. How are you doing, Evan?

Evan: I’m good man. Thanks for having me on today. I really appreciate it.

Jason: Excited to have you. Evan, tell us a little bit about your background and about you, yourself as an entrepreneur, and then I want to get into hearing about MyResidentLiNC.

Evan: Yeah, absolutely. I am based out of the Las Vegas area. Been really, really interested in entrepreneurial endeavors since I was about 16, 17 years old. Started doing some product stuff. I invented the Photo Trophy when I was about 17 years old. I really worked hard a lot on the different types of community building, different products and tools.

About five years ago, I linked up with some guys. We created Evinar, which was the first platform where you could do live streaming on Facebook, really cool concept. Grew the company, sold the company, was looking for something else to do. Because of my background being passionate about building communities because grew up air force […]. I was always moving every 2-3 years and everywhere I move, my mom had to say that we would bring our community with us. It’s not really about the place that makes the person, but the person that makes the place. Really interested in communities as a whole and thought that living in an apartment at that time not knowing any of my neighbors, I thought what better way to create a community than through some piece of technology. That, with that idea, set out to really create a tool that was beneficial for residents, and apartment communities, and condo […]. That’s how we started.

I’ve been working on the concept for about four years. Typical entrepreneurial stuff. Had the idea four years ago, set out to build it, got a couple of clients, partnership issues, had to step back and develop it on my own, and met a new partner, and things are going great. I’m really happy with where the product’s at. The idea and now, just really getting the word out about in a really competitive space, what we’re doing, why it’s different and really trying to get the word out.

It’s exciting. We have customers now that are seeing real results with our product and what we’re doing. Like anything, it’s really competitive so we really want to get the word out.

Jason: Cool. Tell everybody what is MyResidentLiNC.

Evan: We’ve created technology to be able to provide a property management mobile app for all properties within a portfolio. The idea is that if you’re a property management company, that’s our focus right now, and you have 500 apartments throughout the country, each community is run completely separate. If you wanted to create a mobile app solution that works for each property, it’s really a tough game because there might be a property in Chicago and some things that are important to that property are important to somebody in Des Moines, Iowa.

How do you create a real cost to that to provide value for customers across the country? That’s what we build. In essence, it’s a flexible mobile app that you can customize based in your residence in your area.

Jason: Will this work also for property managers that are managing a portfolio of single family homes?

Evan: Yes. We’re really focused right now with multifamily. We focus on communities that are 150 units or less. But recently, we’ve just been hit up by a lot of people that have single family homes and we have implemented a few apps for them as well. That’s definitely a market that we’re going to start getting into a little bit more. Completely different needs so we want to make sure we really understand their needs, understand that resident specifically, and then we’ll build on from that and really provide value there.

Jason: Cool. This will be a great platform for that. People will be interested because a big part of our audiences are the single family property managers. I was looking at your website, I was trying to figure out how can my clients use this. It looks like it really can facilitate some of operational challenges that they have in communicating with tenants. What sort of results are people that are using the same that’s different before they didn’t have the app?

Evan: I’m sure it’s similar with the single family clients but these multifamily customers, their needs are all over the board. They have a lot of pieces of technology that they’re already paying for. They’re using things like Intrata, Reality Real Page. These tools that are pretty expensive but that do really a good job at what they do, which is to try to stay organized. There are tools to help with social media management, there are tools to help with the referral marketing stuff, and there are also […] tools. We wanted to bring all that stuff together.

That’s the idea from a communication standpoint. Every aspect of the app is completely customizable for the client. A lot of times, they do use our communication platform. That allows them to send a text message to all their residents, write their package, maintenance stuff, just to be able to have communication back and forth, one-to-one or one-to-all.

Jason: They can do notifications through the app to everybody that’s downloaded and installed the app.

Evan: Exactly. Even a step further, they can also send text messages as well too.

Jason: That is cool.

Evan: Or emails, either one.

Jason: What you would be able to do is somebody could open up this app for ABC property management or whatever. And on it, they could submit a maintenance request, which then feeds into whatever maintenance company you’re using like SuperTenders or […] or whatever. You could have an icon there for anything related to looking at your available listings, applying for property and these kinds of things could be linked to your AppFolio, or Propertyware, or Buildium, or Contact Direct, or whatever.

Evan: Exactly. When I looked at building this product, the hard part is you have so many not just a multifamily, but even, like you’re aware, these customers of this single-family property managers, their needs are incredibly diverse. They’re using so many different products. To really create an all-encompassing product and for it to be built in a way that’s flexible and scalable for future growth, that’s really what we focus on.

I don’t pretend to know. I started this three years ago. I didn’t know at the time anything about property management. I didn’t go into building the product like, “Okay, this is the solution and here you go.” We built this product from listening to the real customer feedback, from residents, from executives, and from property managers so we understood. One thing that we understood was we can’t understand it all. It’s so diverse.

From building the product, it goes another step. If you even have a prospective resident, we’re able to display certain functionality and certain modules for a prospective resident than a real resident. If there’s somebody that’s looking at your property and you go, “Hey, download our app.” They identify themselves as a prospective resident so they’re in our system. Now, from a communication standpoint, things like looking at floorplans, looking at the house photos, pricing, if you have whatever software you’re using for your application, now you can integrate all of that stuff and you can text message and send them notifications.

When they become a renter, now boom! They go to the part of the app where they’re an actual renter and there’s completely flexible functionality for them as a renter like you touched on. Now, they’re able to incorporate all the tools that they’re using into that side of the app and it’s completely customizable by property or for that specific resident.

Jason: That’s really cool. I’m sure property managers are doing some unique things you’re saying occasionally. They’re pulling on some really unique stuff. What are some unique things that you’re seeing people plug into this?

Evan: We have a company, really, really big property on the West Coast. They have eight leasing office agents just as an example and they needed help scheduling appointments. They didn’t have any type of schedule so we integrated with Calendly, which is a really cool email scheduling system. That’s just an example. We were able to pull in that information and then they were able to be a lot more efficient.

We have a property, Turnberry Towers. They have the highest green globe rating across the country and so, they were able to actually decrease all of the uses of print for notifications and do it all through the app using our push notification and text message. That was really cool.

We have other clients. I’m trying to think of really cool use cases that I’ve seen. We had a property, Warmington, they have 10 properties at Las Vegas and they created a resident perks program. They’ve partnered with local businesses. If you take the app to local businesses, you get discounts and deals for bringing the app and showing that you’re a resident of Warmington. It’s a really cool way that they’ve found, to partner up with local businesses and really become more part of the community.

We’ve seen people be able to book the clubhouse, corporate events and activities, which has been really cool. That’s typical. I think most apps do the maintenance, the calendar of events, the pay rent, at least in the industry I’m in.

I’m really interested in a lot of the other stuff. I’ve seen really cool things incorporating the software so that it automatically sends out when somebody moves in because the systems are integrated, it automatically sends them a download link to download the app as part of the moving process. Some of the stuff like that. But really, the sky is the limit. We’ve only been really live a year so we’re just starting to see people start to do really cool things and understand the real value of what a tool like this could be. It’s actually really fun for me. I love seeing that stuff.

Jason: They could connect anything into this that will work in a mobile browser into this app? They could integrate a really cool type form for something. They could link that to Zapier then and have Zapier initiate some sort of automation. The sky is the limit then.

Evan: Exactly.

Jason: Getting an app develop is incredibly expensive normally.

Evan: Yup.

Jason: It’s insane. Do you have any idea what the cost? I don’t know, but you’re talking like $10,000, $15,000, $20,000, usually, minimum.

Evan: That’s the thing. When you’re talking about to this property management client and I’m sure it would even be probably the exact same for people that are on here listening and stuff, single family.

It’s crazy. It’s never ending. It’s like I have these 10 ideas that would be really for an app and then next week, they’re like, “It would be really cool if we can do X&Y.” Maybe you start with $50,000 for an app and then, before you know it, it’s like a $300,000, $400,000 app to incorporate the communication, to be able to continue with the maintenance, to be able to add new integrations. Even for a large apartment that has hundreds and hundreds of properties, it doesn’t make sense for them to spend the money to develop their own app. What we’re offering is a way. They pay us monthly. Really, really affordable based on the branding packages that we have and then, they have their own custom app.

Jason: Everybody listening is going to be wondering, what does affordable mean? Can you give us some ballpark ranges here?

Evan: Yes. We charge per unit. We charge about $1 per unit. But with scale and with a lot of units, that price decreases a lot. That’s what I’ll say.

Jason: Okay, great. Most property managers in the single-family space, a lot of them are small. They’re just getting started. They’re under 50, 60 doors. It wouldn’t make sense for them. But then, what happens is a lot of them will break that 100-door barrier and then they easily and quickly usually scale to about 200-400 doors units and then, if they can break that. We’re on the mission here at DoorGrow to help a lot more break that barrier. The 200-400 doors range, that’s where they have a legit business. That’s where they’ve build the team, they’ve got system down, some processes in place to look in for how they can scale. And they would be looking into something like this to facilitate that.

I think the real advantage of this tool is mobile. Mobile is just a huge advantage. People don’t realize how glued are the people to their phones. Their phones are everywhere. If they don’t have their phone with them at all times, they’re freaking out. Now, we have watches, a lot of people that are telling them what the phones doing.

Evan: Jason, they say by 2020, that 98% of people won’t even use computers anymore. As far as the average user that’s just on their phone. Even me, running a company, this it the first time I’ve opened my Mac. I have my team that will do the implementation and development, obviously. For me, running the company, I’m doing a lot of the organization stuff. My CRM is now a mobile app, I’m working with people mobily throughout the world. I’m really using my phone for mostly everything now as it is.

Jason: Right. On the tenant side. That’s absolutely true. They are all over the phone. The phone is how you’re going to connect with them largely. That’s where they’re searching, they’re looking locally. They’re on all these different apps. If their perspective truly […]. Mobile’s huge but mobiles can be a big deal for property managers that are really able to have some space in the phone in order to connect with their existing tenants and residents to facilitate getting rent, to getting them to do the things they need, to submit the maintenance request.

The advantage of having system like yours would be that they can pick and choose and put together whatever they want. The biggest problem I see right now in the property management industry is that there’s all these walled gardens. There is no API. This jack of all trades and masters of none, they’re the master of one. They have one thing really going for. Maybe it’s the back office, for example.

Evan: You’re 100% right. That’s what going on. It’s actually not just property management. As a whole, as an industry, it’s a lot. But this industry is even more antiquated and old school than  a lot of other industries. It’s funny because I see that all the time. There’s a company that is really cool. You can open your door with an app. They do that really well. There’s another company that does really good payment system stuff or another company that does drive cleaning really well.

You’re telling me I’m going to have to have 400 apps. And they don’t talk to each other. It’s really hard for a resident to get really involved in it because there’s just so much going on. What if you create and condense that everything together.

Jason: If you just squeeze everything into one physical app, one tangible app in the phone and the rest are connected through web apps or though good pages that are mobile friendly. That’s going to make that works so seamless and so well for a property manager.

Evan: It’s customized based on their needs. These property managers know their residence better than anybody does because they’re dealing with them on a daily basis. They know what will improve their life, make their job easier. It’s funny because they’re smarter even they don’t they are necessarily. From a technology standpoint, they know what need to be built. As they start to get interested in mobile and they start to implement technology, they realize, “Man, this is really cool but we could save even more time if we did X, Y, & Z.” That’s where we come in to say, “Okay, you want to do X, Y, & Z. If X, Y, & Z could apply to all these other customers, we’re happy to help you build it. Most of the time, 80% of the time, it does make sense. What they want to do is something that a lot of other customers could find value on.

Jason: That’s killer. There’s so many property management companies and like you said, so many of them are really antiquated, especially in the multifamily space. But single-family, they tend to be a bit more early adopter and a bit more tech savvy. I think they’ll be a really great audience for you. I’m excited to see what happens after this show. Is there like a big set up cost or is it just monthly?

Evan: No. Actually, I’d love to have some of your listeners and you, really help. We haven’t focused on single-family, really. Like I said, our focus has been on these large property management companies or small property management companies in the multifamily. But I’d be really interested in understanding the customer a little more and working with your audience to come up with some tasks and some pricing that makes sense for you guys.

Even the user of that 60 doors, I’d love to incorporate them and somehow have some type of this technology to be able to offer them, to help get them to those under 200 doors. That makes the pricing make sense. I understand that they don’t have apartment, a lot of money, but that’s the idea of this product. I want it to be accessible to everybody.

Even at a dollar door, if it’s 60 doors, it could make sense if the development make sense.

Jason: Absolutely. The biggest challenge for the property managers at the smaller sizes time is something like this, when they can connect and outsource at various firms because they can afford a higher, usually it’s some of those that smaller level and they’re like solopreneurs,

the advantage of this would be that they would be able to delay hiring by leveraging all these different technology platforms that are available and incorporating it into this one central hub. If they are larger, they’re able to be able to scale without throwing people at their problems, which we’re fans of throwing technology, systems processes, automation, all these stuff at a problem, long before you start throwing people at it. But most people default the people, they’re like, “I need to hire. It works well for them.

Evan: Right. I get it. It’s really interesting. It’s cool.

Jason: A dollar door is very affordable for a tool when they’re pawn in maybe $100, in some instances, $200 per door a month.

Evan: Our typical set up cost is about the first month payment times two. It depends because we have different branding options right now. One option is we have the MyResidentLiNC mobile app. That’s our most affordable option. If the management company doesn’t mind being featured in our pair in app, that’s the most affordable price, then we create a custom management facing apps. As an example, Warmington, who’s our customer. We create The Warmington app and then there’s dropdown of all of their properties just for Warmington. The iPhone and the Android icon are just for Warmington.

The third option, some properties are big, we have a property that has 20,000 units. That’s a huge property. They’ll create a custom app for that property and then they manage all of them on our backend. That’s the most expensive option.

For single-family, it probably would make sense to be under the MyResidentLiNC platform or probably create a new platform just specifically for them where the user types in the address and the property manager has access to that address. We can associate them and then, they can start to push custom development to those users based on addresses, based geographic parts of town, or their type of user, or whatever they want. That way, we could probably  make the product affordable for people in the space.

Jason: Yeah. Some of these guys, even though they’re small, they sign up for like AppFolio and they’re spending a minimum of $200 a month or $300 a month or something, just to have this backend. This is really cool. Anything else that people should know about MyResidentLiNC?

Evan: We love working with new customers. That’s how we’re building this product. We want to hear feedback from customer. We want to improve their operations, improve the resident experience. Any feedback or ideas that you or any of your listeners have, we’d love to hear it. Email me at evan@myresidentlinc.co. Anything you think that would improve the customer experience or improve your workflow, make it a little more efficient for you, we’d love to hear it. There’s no bad ideas and hopefully, we can bring some of that development to you guys.

Jason: Awesome. Evan, I really appreciate you coming out and hanging out here on DoorGrow Show with me. Why don’t you give everybody your website address again.

Evan: Yeah. Our website is myresidentlinc.com. Come and check it out. Call us or email me if you have any questions.

Jason: You’ve mentioned in green room, before this, that you have a new baby.

Evan: I do. Really excited. It was funny when I have interview, I thought it was a call so obviously, I’m working from home today. As you can see, I have a three-week old baby and she’s getting a little fuzzy side to side so I decided to stay at home and help her out today. Her name is Kennedy Rose. It was funny because entrepreneurial dream, I was sitting downstairs without my shirt on ready to do this call, eating cereal really quick and I go, “It’s not a video. Jason […].”

Jason: Is this your first?

Evan: My first.

Jason: I’ve got four. Congratulations. Having a kid changes everything, changes perspective. It brings out the provider attributes in us, especially in us hunter entrepreneurs. We are hunters. It brings out this protective side in us. That’s always a cool thing to see especially daughters. Daughters change guys. I’ve got three of those.

Evan: Jason, I’d love to come back to get some feedback from some more single-family types of users and we have more custom solution for single-family. I’d love to come on and show you guys what we’ve been able to do.

Jason: Awesome. I’ll get you connected with some other companies as well. Thanks for coming out.

Evan: Absolutely. We’ll talk soon. Bye guys.

Jason: You just listened to The DoorGrow Show. We are building a community of the savviest property management entrepreneurs on the planet in the DoorGrow Club. Join your fellow DoorGrow Hackers at doorgrowclub.com.

Listen. Everyone is doing the same stuff; SEO, PPC, Pay Per Lead, content, social direct mail, and they still struggle to grow. At DoorGrow, we solve the biggest challenge getting deals in growing your business. Find out more at doorgrow.com.

Find any show notes or links from today’s episode on our blog at doorgrow.com. To get notified of future events or news, subscribe to our newsletter at doorgrow.com/subscribe. Until next time. Take what you’ve learned and start doorgrow hacking your business and your life.

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