On November 15-16, the property management community gathered to share their expertise and explore how technology can solve some of the most pressing challenges facing individual businesses and the entire industry at Buildium’s first-ever PM Nation user conference.

More than 350 attendees — including real estate managers, investors, HOA leaders, and sponsors from 46 states and internationally — gathered in Boston to network face-to-face, learn about the latest industry research, and develop their strategies for success in 2022. sharpen .

From investment opportunities and top tenant priorities to the latest Buildium and Propertyware product roadmaps, we’ve covered it a lot. And we don’t want you to miss any of it.

So in case you couldn’t make it in person, we’ve rounded up some of the event’s biggest takeaways:

Today’s Challenges and Opportunities

PM Nation Mike Mauseth keynote
Mike Mauseth, Senior Vice President of RealPage presents the findings of PM Nation’s 2022 Property Management Industry Report on Day 1. (Photo credit: Austin Wilder, South End Digital)

Mike Mauseth, Senior Vice President of RealPage, kicked off Day 1 by sharing the latest research from our Property Management Industry Report 2022, conducted in conjunction with the National Association of Residential Property Management (NARPM).

Mike’s outlook for the industry was both clear and optimistic, a sentiment shared by those in the audience and the wider community of property managers we surveyed. He revealed that 86% of respondents predict revenue growth in 2022 and 73% plan to grow their portfolios, the highest rate we’ve seen since 2017. Investors continue to see huge potential in the rental of properties.

The keynote set the stage for how smaller investors can compete with larger companies targeting the housing market, sharing how personalized service — a hallmark of property management firms — can give them an advantage.

Along the same lines, Mike shared feedback from landlords and tenants about what they value most about property managers. Landlords are increasingly looking to PMs for their expertise on local market conditions, regulatory changes and investment advice. The technology they are most looking for is digital payment options, followed by technology for lease signing and maintenance requests and tracking capabilities.

Residents have similar priorities. They now expect more digital-first interactions during their rental experience. The data shows that in many cases PMs do not deliver these digital interactions to the extent that residents want. If residents had their way, the use of electronic payments would be 23 percentage points higher than where it stands now.

All of this led to Mike’s biggest takeaway: Changing residents’ habits and expectations, largely impacted by the pandemic, have made technology an essential part of the rental experience. In light of the pandemic, new technologies are now at the heart of doing business in the industry. They help property management companies of all sizes leverage their strengths and exceed the expectations of both residents and property owners.

“First you start and build your accounts. 25, 50 bills. Then you realize you need help and you need to hire people and set up software and systems to do it. It costs much… [Technology] A big part of our growth has been to leverage and build the business. It’s a great collaboration.” – Jason Born, Born Property Management

The PM Nation Experience

And that’s what attendees pointed out as a defining benefit of coming to PM Nation. For many, it was a unique experience, one that combined the wide range of possibilities technology can bring to the industry with a deeper look at the personalized service and distinctive value that each property management offers; that special “x-factor” that defines successful customer relationships.

We weren’t the only ones championing the benefits of that combination. A dozen partners joined us at PM Nation, each with their own approach to improving the nuts and bolts of property management through technology.

PM Nation Discovery Lounge
Participants explore partner solutions and get answers to their questions in the Discovery Lounge. (Photo credit: Austin Wilder, South End Digital)

The Discovery Lounge quickly became a hub of event activity, serving as a space for attendees to have one-on-one conversations with partners, share their specific challenges and make plans to help them find the right technology on the go. appropriate way for their business.

“[Our software] helps us look back and understand how and why we got here. Be it a novice investor or an experienced management company, it is the tools that help build a young business and it is the tools that help a mature business perfect itself. [The technology] is invaluable.” -Aram Gosdanian, Abbeyhill Real Estate and Management

At PM Labs, attendees also had the opportunity to speak directly with product experts from Propertyware and Buildium, who helped them learn how to make the most of new, relevant features and enhance their skills with the tools they use every day.

“The biggest and best improvement we made was using the e-lease feature…..When we lease in Word, it probably took 20-30 minutes to complete a lease. Now we can approve an applicant, initiate an e-lease and email the e-lease within 5 minutes. It saves so much time.” -Jeannie Connors, Realty Solutions NJ

Breakout sessions during the first day were an opportunity to delve deeper into the details of some of those features. Speakers from Buildium, Propertyware and external partners shared their experience on how to make the most of new processes, service offerings and technology in every area of ​​a business, from accounting efficiency to communicating with residents.

PM Nation Breakout Session
Barbara Kaplan, Industry Principal, RealPage, David Do, Propertyware Consultant, APM Help, and Paul Rozelle, Senior Vice President, GOAL Property Services discuss accounting efficiency during a day 1 breakout session (Photo credit: Austin Wilder, South End Digital )

Clients such as Drew Sygit of Logical Property Management and Shirley Lopez-Cano of PRANDI Property Management took part in the discussion to show how they have put these features into practice to not only work more effectively, but also to open up new opportunities in the market. as a competitive advantage that attracts potential customers.

PM Nation Partner Breakout
Attendees gather to learn about the latest Buildium and Propertyware partner solutions (Photo credit: Austin Wilder, South End Digital)

The perception of the residents was another important point of attention during many discussions. Partners such as Tenant Turner spoke to crowded rooms about the possibilities for digital experiences emerging during the pandemic and how they could cut through the noise to find technologies that really matter to residents. Presenters highlighted solutions such as automated lockboxes, maintenance and viewing scheduling, and tools that reduce response times. All these conveniences simplify the everyday aspects of finding and renting housing, which ultimately adds value in the eyes of tenants.

Looking forward

PM Nation wasn’t just about what works now. Attendees also learned how to prepare their business for 2022 and beyond.

PM Nation Crystal Washington keynote
Attendees take their seats for futurist Crystal Washington’s keynote, day 2 (Photo credit: Austin Wilder, South End Digital)

In her keynote on Day 2, futurist Crystal Washington, CSP, used the context of our always-online, hyper-connected lifestyle to share advice on how to deliver differentiating experiences for customers. She showed attendees how to focus on evolving customer needs, find gaps where expectations exceed existing services, and then seize those opportunities to be the first companies to offer what customers really want.

Her strategies fueled sessions on the Propertyware and Buildium product roadmaps, where a variety of new features were announced to help property managers make the most of the digital-first interactions that residents and homeowners alike have come to expect.

PM Nation was a first experience of its kind, but it won’t be the last. Stay tuned in 2022 to learn more about what’s to come.

The event may be over, but it’s not too late to gain the insight you need to be successful in the new year. View the 2022 Property Management Industry Report featuring the experiences and preferences of thousands of property managers, tenants and landlords.

Our Industry Report partner, NARPM, will also annual convention and fair on October 17-20, 2022, where they take a closer look at key real estate management trends.

Responses from this year’s attendees and sponsors showed that PM Nation is more than just a conference – it’s a community. By connecting and sharing experiences we can learn from each other, help each other through challenging times and improve the way business is done. We hope you will attend future events as we build the future of property management together.

Read more on Buildium News