online leasing

With the help of technological advances, the rental industry has evolved to offer simple solutions for landlords and property managers to streamline everyday tasks in order to be more efficient, more organized, and more successful.  

Online software systems create easy solutions for marketing vacancies, processing applications, screening tenants, collecting rent, and managing owner and property accounts.  And one of the biggest areas of property management hasn’t been excluded from the list of software solutions either – lease processing has become completely electronic so managers can fill vacancies faster and with less error.

Lease agreements are legal contracts between a tenant and manager or owner regarding the terms and conditions of living on a rental property.  A lease is signed at the beginning of tenancy and provides legal protection for landlords who rely on agreements to enforce rules, especially in regards to how much and how often rent is collected.

Processing lease agreements directly through your property management software allows you to create or upload custom lease agreements that can be sent electronically to your tenants for them to review and sign online.

Property managers and landlords should take advantage of online lease features in order to:

  1. Save Time:  Online leasing eliminates the cumbersome process of emailing, printing, signing, scanning, and returning.  (Or the even slower, user-error-prone process of snail-mailing your lease documents to tenants).
  2. Improve Occupancy: By automating your lease signing process, you will have more time to market vacancies, screen applicants and approve tenants, so your properties get rented quickly. 
  3. Reduce Human Error: Electronic copies of your signed lease agreements are stored digitally and securely for you or your tenants to access at any time.  You never have to worry about misplacing hard copies of lease agreements again.  If your lease agreements require multiple initials or signatures at different items throughout the document, electronic signature software ensures that no pages or items are left unsigned. 
  4. Go Green: Most lease agreements are multiple pages, some even upwards of 20+ pages, which means a lot of paper gets used to print copies for every tenant and manager.  If you have multiple properties, you could be looking at using thousands of pieces of paper for each lease term.  Online leases eliminate the need for paper, positively affecting your carbon footprint. 
  5. Save Money: Not only will you save on paper and printing costs by eliminating paper leases, the amount of time saved by automating your leasing process results in real money for property managers who are able to spend their time filling vacancies and collecting rental income. 
  6. More Secure: Documents are tamper-proof due to digital encryption and audit trails, providing you with legally enforceable agreements that are easily accessible for reference when needed. 
  7. Build Better Tenant Relations: Modern tenants expect to manage everything online, including their rental housing.  By offering convenient services like online lease signing, you will attract quality tenants who are impressed with your modern business.  You will also be able to empower your tenants to reference their lease agreement anytime by accessing it securely online. 
  8. Automate Renewals:  Rather than starting from scratch and marketing vacancies to find new tenants, electronic signatures functions provide simple solutions for renewing lease agreements with your current tenants.

One of the biggest obstacles software companies faced when integrating online lease features into their programs was enforcing legal electronic signatures.  Electronic signatures also referred to as eSignatures, are an electronic indication of acceptance and agreement to the terms of a contract or document.  Meaning, electronic signatures are a way of agreeing to legally enforceable terms without needing to physically sign a piece of paper.

The best way to enforce the legality of an electronic signature is to ensure attribution and record the integrity of the signed document.  Mainly, one needs to prove the identity of the person who signed the document and that the document was unaltered after signing.  Leading providers of electronic signatures services offer advanced authentication methods, like linking a signature to a password-protected account and email address to prove who signed the document.  Record integrity is managed with hashing, encryption and secure retention and storage to ensure the document has not been altered.

The easiest way to access electronic signatures for processing lease agreements online is through integrated features in your property management software.  These programs ensure the best compliance and enforceability of your rental agreements in all 50 states.

Rentec Direct provides electronic signatures to fully automate online leasing for property managers and landlords through a partnership with Dropbox Sign.  DocuSign offers industry-leading levels of eSignature enforceability, and that helps users comply with the U.S. federal ESIGN Act and UETA Act, as well as many other international laws and statutes.

To learn more about how you can start using Rentec Direct’s eSignatures today visit the Knowledge Base Article – Electronic Signatures with Dropbox Sign.

Not a Rentec Direct user yet?  You can access all the powerful functions in the easy-to-use property management software with a free 14-day trial today!