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There is no such thing as a software that is perfect for everyone. This is especially true in a diverse, vertical market such as self-storage. Originally born of the idea to simply manage units and keep track of payments, management software rapidly evolved into the central hub of countless operations that now goes far beyond basic management processes. Advanced revenue management, tenant communications, marketing automation – there is an unbelievable number of features and partners offered by these once basic systems.
Along with additional features, however, can sometimes come unwelcome changes as well. The management software you fell in love with even a few years ago may now not look, feel, or even cost remotely close to what you originally purchased. Changes such as negative software updates, company mergers, and rising costs are problems that can afflict software consumers of any industry but being prepared to assess your operational needs and re-evaluate your options can save you months (or years) of headaches down the line.
Whether you have become disenchanted with your current software provider or just a fresh face to self-storage, here are some important factors to take into consideration when looking into a property management software:
Starting Simple: Cloud or Standalone
The most fundamental question in choosing a management software is how you would like your system to operate.
Standalone software though Windows or even DOS was the original benchmark for software and is still used today, though significantly less commonly. Through standalone systems, your software and all of your data is hosted locally on your computer. Backups are usually done manually and stored on the local hard drive or an external hard drive. The reason for the decline in standalone software use is in part due to its inherent vulnerabilities.