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Really after someone that has used this software and what they think about it. Also, if they recommend any other software that is better than LV; I would like to hear from them too.
I have reviewed some of the threads on this forum and I can see a fair few people have asked this qn before with various software being recommended. I have a few BTL properties and manage my properties myself. I have been using spreadsheets to keep logs of rental income, property cost/valuations/improvements, mortgages, PDF folder structure for filing documents/invoices/tenancy agreements, etc and Outlook for tracking expiry dates for various important checks and events. I also use a generic Accting package (VT cash book) which is free to download which works out for each property in the portfolio the receipts and payments of rent and rental expenses. I also use a database for recoding tenant and property details together with a log of my communication with all 3rd parties.
I am finding this way of working quite fragmented, time consuming and in the long run costly as I want to try and build a portfolio over the years. I have been looking at Landlord Vision and the more I look at it the more attracted I am getting to it due to following additional reasons:
1. Everything is in one place
2. The interface is clean and intuitive to follow
3.Free support for any queries
4. they have cash flow, tax analysis (CGT as well as Income tax) which after s24 assumes a significant concern so one can prepare for high tax liab if highly geared
5. they also have a tenant module as well as journal to keep track of communication between LL and tenants
6. pricing is right from £10-£30/mth + VAT(it is only fair to charge on the basis of Active tenancies) and updates from what I can see to their product is almost even month (new features as well as fixes) which suggests they are dynamic
7. a whole accounting module to help in preparing accts and knowing what profits you are making per property
8. a cash flow report together with PL & BS to show how one is doing at any point in time
9. The most important tenancy documents to self manage properties.
10. SInce it is a UK based Co all references are to UK based landlord and tenant rules as well as uk tax legislation (which discounts some of the non uk based software),
On the negative side:
1. The Accting module is quite longwinded and may suit a person that has Accting and tax background
2. Pricing can be improved upon in the way they count "Active Tenancies". So if you rent 5 rooms per property that counts as 5 active tenancies. You need only 2 properties like this & your starter plan needs to be upgraded to Standard plan (twice the price by then).
Look forward to hearing from anyone that has used it and others that feel there is another software that does even more than LV at a price to suit our pockets as landlords
I have tried LV as well as some of the others - to be honest I didn't find any of them particularly easy to use. Part of the problem is that every landlord has specific ways that their tenancy/records work and it is tough for a generic system to account for all these small differences.
For now I am still sticking to a combination of Excel and Podio (which a CRM system which is very flexible which I have adapted for my needs) - its not ideal but does the job.
A blog and information source for buy to let landlords
If software is set up correctly it should save you a lot of time. If it isn't then you will regret changing from your current systems.
It's worth having a chat with Arthur Online.
I use Excel for book keeping, tenants and property data, with some VBA scripting to automate repetative tasks and / or time consuming tasks. Google Drive to share files. Teamviewer to access an office computer.
I have 30 properties and 150+ tenants
It does :
Booking keeping; upload transactions from bank account, auto allocate to categories and tenants. Currently holds 7 years transactions, 200,000 rows.
Tenant : Rent Charging and Production of Weekly Rent Schedules; currently over 150+ schedules.
Tenant detail editing
Property detail editing
Property highlights when certs are due to expire, energy consumption goes beyond predegined threshold e.g. 10 m3 daily during winter, 5 m3 daily during summer.
Property energy consumption; auto download daily consumption from energy supplier website.
Maintenance; tasks property and staff
To Arran Pritchard
I am impressed that using Excel/Google Drive and Teamviewer you can manage so much!!!. The question though is can you manage all this with time to spare or are your systems busting at the seams? How do you for eg check for profits/losses per property? Tax liability you are accruing? Cash flow- how it will look in a year's time? How do you keep a note of conversation with your tenants and 3rd party suppliers? what about tenancy agreements (which change all the time with legislation)?
I use https://www.smartpropertymanager.com which serves me well for my handful of properties, and does the majority of the above but is completely free.
I've reasearched different softwares for months and tried a few different full time including Arthur and Landlord Vision was the best for me.
I don't think it is the most intuitive to navigate around but it isn't bad and it does everything you want.
Only real let down for me is the iPhone app.
Landlord Vision has key dates and you can add tasks so it reminds me what I need to do/chase up something and the reports were great when I did my self assessment. I'd recommend it.
Just do 3 of your properties for free to get a feel for it. Their customer service is good too.
Landlord vision doesn’t have auto bank feeds which is a killer for me. Bank reconciliation involves downloading a file from your bank (remembering the last date you did this to avoid duplicates) and then uploading to LV.
It’s painful. If they sorted this I think I’d move to it.