If you’re wondering how accounting software can make your small business more profitable, here is a real estate case study.
Over the years, I have helped several businesses become more efficient by introducing technology to replace old methods. I began helping a certain real estate business over the past decade and have witnessed the vast improvement the company has made by incorporating mobile integration as well as an online presence. By implementing free small business accounting software, the real estate company improved overall efficiency exponentially.
Developing Various Payment Methods
I rarely carry cash as all of my transactions are conducted using my debit card. Coincidentally, I don’t order checks for my account either since all of my bills are payable online. After explaining why it’s more ideal to use online methods instead of sending cash or checks, the business owner implemented a payment button directly onto his website for his tenants. This payment processing was done through an online solution such as PayPal and allowed those with credit cards to make immediate payments.
Recent developments in the free small business accounting software allowed the owner to include a payment link within online invoices. This allowed him to email rentals, property management fees and other debts to clients with direct access to pay online. This alone allowed three tenants to pay immediately. In the area where the company is based, it takes more effort to obtain a money order or check than it does to use a credit or debit card to pay rent. Clients that were usually late or behind in payments were now paying regularly with each invoice.
Before using the free small business accounting software, this business owner had an employee that would keep track of finances in a pencil and paper ledger. This consumed a great deal of time for that employee. In fact, many errors were spotted in these ledgers due to inaccurate mathematical calculations. As the accounting software integrated with the bank records, the information updated automatically. The employee was then free to complete other tasks allowing her to make better use of her time.
The free small business accounting software was able to correlate various points of data in order to deliver a variety of reports. This information was useful when it came to developing future strategies regarding expenses and purchases. Trouble areas were identified in the monthly profit and loss statement and were addressed increasing net income over time.
Invoicing for Repairs and Property Management
This particular real estate company offered maintenance services not covered by rental or sales agreements. The accounting software allowed for customized products and services complete with basic descriptions to help prevent confusion. With the addition of the payment link within the invoices, clients were able to pay in a timely fashion – which most of them did. The automatic backups saved copies of the original documents offering greater functionality and less resources spent in printing. After approximately one year, the real estate company cut its paper and ink usage down to one-third of what it was in previous years. The only files printed today are tax forms and legal sheets in regards to sales and signed contracts.
As the client takes regular vacations out of the country for charity work overseas, I demonstrated how online access of financial data of the business can be beneficial. At any given time, he is able to access the accounting aspect of the real estate business and is able to keep in contact with employees while away. Instead of receiving bulk emails of receipts, files are now uploaded to the Cloud and shareable on a remote server. This eliminated the wait time for downloading email as the owner’s Internet in the other country is poor.
File Corruption Reduction
In many instances, the real estate owner downloaded files that became corrupt due to unstable Internet connections. He would need the same files emailed to him repeatedly. With a Cloud-based server, the files remain intact whether the download was complete or not. This saved staff several hours each month in communication time and re-sending various files.
Tracking Time and Projects
Due to the functionality of the free small business accounting software, the real estate business owner and employees were able to track projects and time with less complications. Instead of handwritten notes and unclear task management, the system incorporated clear print for clients to understand what they were being charged for. This reduced complaints from various tenants and homeowners as the invoices laid the groundwork for clear communication. Coincidentally, accepted payments throughout the years has steadily increased during the transition to demonstrating costs within invoices.
Tracking resources for invoicing enhanced cost efficiency as materials and tools were consistently monitored. I found that the real estate company was notorious for buying products it already had in stock. With proper tracking capabilities and billing measures in place through the free small business accounting software, various losses began to decrease. Less was being spent annually on maintenance procedures and goods allowing the business to retain greater amounts of money.
One of the more attractive points to the accounting software was the capacity to share files, ideas and tasks with anyone within the company. This was incredibly useful during the times when the real estate business owner was overseas. Instead of trying to live-chat with him at odd hours of the night for business matters, information was shared through the system. Although emergencies were addressed by phone, regular routines and tasks were handled on a regular basis.
In employee time and billable resources alone, the accounting software has saved this particular real estate business thousands of dollars each year. This savings was then used in marketing for future customers and enhancing the website. As long as the guidelines and procedures I helped create are used on a daily basis, the small business accounting application should continue to save the organization money.
Article Submitted By Community Writer