5 AI property management strategies you can use to amp up your business today

Laurie Mega
Laurie Mega | 8 min. read

Published on August 1, 2023

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If you’ve picked up the news at all in the last couple of years, no doubt you’ve read about artificial intelligence (AI) and the transformative force it has become in just about every industry you can think of. And you’ve probably heard of ChatGPT, the AI tool that can do everything from telling a joke, to building code, to writing a novel.

And if you’re not using it yet for your property management business, you might be at least curious about it.

With its ability to process vast amounts of data and make intelligent decisions, AI has already begun to change the way properties are managed, enhancing efficiency, reducing costs, and improving the overall tenant experience. In this article, we’ll explore some of the myriad uses of AI in property management and how you can integrate it into your own workflow.

But first, let’s explore exactly what AI and ChatGPT are, and what they mean for property management and the larger real estate industry.

What Is AI and ChatGPT?

Artificial intelligence, or AI, refers to any process performed by a computer that typically requires human intelligence. Those tasks can include, predicting what you’re going to write in a search bar, suggesting items you might like on Amazon, or writing an entire email.

For property managers, AI could help spot patterns in maintenance requests, for example, allowing your company to anticipate and gear up—or staff up—for busy times, or perform preventative maintenance to reduce recurring requests.

It could even help you identify inefficiencies in your maintenance processes that are costing you or your owners money.

Generative AI refers to artificial intelligence that can produce some kind of content. It’s the type of AI that will write that email or you—or that blog post, or that video script. It does that by using a large language model (LLM), in which it uses deep learning and a vast data set to create new content.

There are a fast-growing array of AI tools available to help users do everything from paint a picture to solve a complex mathematical problem. One of those tools is the Google-powered ChatGPT.

Ask ChatGPT a question or request it to perform a task, and it will respond. Ask it to write advertising copy for your business, and it will, as long as you give it the right parameters.

Tell it to create a blog post—like this one—and it will. (We admit it. We used ChatGPT to write the rough draft of this post, then we went back and added another 800 words or so.)

Just be aware that AI and ChatGPT are still in their early stages of development. They won’t always give you entirely accurate content—in fact, we’ve known ChatGPT to give completely wrong information.

That said, no matter what you use AI for, you still need a human to double-check the work.

ChatGPT is just one AI tool out there, and it takes some playing around with to really get in the rhythm of using it. There are, however, tools that have already integrated AI into their platforms, allowing property managers to choose the exact area of their business they would like to streamline and then choose the best app or tool to help.

Let’s explore artificial intelligence for property management and five of strategies that can help your business.

AI Property Management Tools: How Can They Help Your Business?

In our 2023 Industry Report, property managers told us that while they plan to grow their businesses in the next year or so, they still want to streamline their processes and get more done with less.

Property management apps, many that use AI in some capacity, are helping them get there. And even tools such as ChatGPT are cutting the time and effort needed to perform day-to-day, and even big-picture tasks.

Let’s take a look at some of the ways you can use AI in property management.

1. Improve and Automate Operations (AI for Lease Management)

One of the key areas where AI has made significant strides in property management is streamlining operations. AI-powered systems can automate and optimize various tasks, freeing property managers from time-consuming activities and enabling them to focus on strategic decision-making.

For instance, AI can automate rent collection, lease management, and maintenance scheduling, ensuring timely and accurate execution while minimizing errors and delays.

To get a better idea, let’s take a closer look at AI for lease management and the leasing cycle. We already know from our survey that property managers are using ChatGPT and other AI tools to write marketing materials, including rental listings.

When prospective tenants apply for a unit, property managers can use AI tenant screening tools with to analyze credit scores, employment history, and other essential information to determine eligibility. For example, Buildium’s Enhanced Tenant Screening combines rental applications with RealPage’s vast database of rental history to match tenants to your properties.

By analyzing various data points, including credit history, employment records, and rental references, AI algorithms can deliver more accurate assessments, reducing the risk of default and ensuring a reliable tenant base.

Property managers can also use AI to look at the bigger leasing picture. By analyzing turnover rates, vacancy times, and application rates, property managers can determine where they’re losing money over vacant properties, what kinds of applicants they’re getting for their units, and even how many tenants are renewing their leases.

With that information they can adjust their marketing strategies to bring in their target tenants, determine where they may need to update units, and work on tenant experience to pull in more renewals.

2. Enhance the Tenant Engagement and Experience

More and more, chatbots and virtual assistants powered by AI are handling tenant inquiries and providing instant responses. These virtual agents can answer frequently asked questions, guide tenants through common processes, and even assist with lease agreements and applications.

By offering 24/7 support, AI-powered chatbots ensure prompt and consistent communication, enhancing tenant satisfaction and reducing the workload of property management staff.

For example, AI Chatbot tool Nice allows businesses of all types to build their own chatbots and integrate them into their CRM.

3. Make Smarter Decisions (AI for Real Estate Investment)

Our industry report identified a trend in rental ownership: more rental owners consider themselves investors than in previous years. While some owners are investing intentionally and some are somewhat falling into rental real estate investing, both types of owners are looking to their property managers to help them grow their portfolios and make smart investment decisions.

Some AI tools’ ability to analyze vast amounts of data in real time enables property managers to make smarter, data-driven decisions for their owners, as well as for their own businesses. By analyzing historical and current data, AI can predict rental demand and identify potential investment opportunities.

When it comes to operations, AI algorithms can process market trends, property performance data, and tenant preferences to generate valuable insights.

Buildium’s Insights & Analytics can measure key KPIs to help you keep your owners’ properties and your own business on track.

Learn more

4. Make Properties Energy Efficient and Sustainable

AI can play an important role in promoting energy efficiency and sustainability in property management. AI-powered systems can monitor energy consumption patterns, identify areas of waste, and suggest energy-saving measures.

By integrating with smart devices and sensors, property managers can use AI to optimize HVAC systems, lighting, and other utilities, resulting in substantial energy savings and reduced environmental impact.

For example, property managers can use HVAC systems that include temperature and motion sensors that will adjust heating and cooling to meet tenant needs. Data collected over time can help inform property managers of how and when common areas are used.

AI algorithms can analyze weather forecasts and occupancy patterns, as well, to automate energy usage, ensuring that properties are heated, cooled, and illuminated, and landscaping is watered, based on weather conditions.

5. Mitigate Risk and Enhance Security

AI-powered surveillance systems can analyze video feeds in real time, detecting and alerting property managers to potential security breaches or unauthorized access. Those systems can employ facial recognition technology, as well, to improve access control and ensure that only authorized individuals gain entry to restricted areas.

Additionally, AI algorithms can assess data from various sources, including social media and news feeds, to identify potential security threats and prompt early warnings. By proactively monitoring online platforms for mentions of property-related issues or neighborhood incidents, property managers can respond swiftly and mitigate potential risks.

The integration of AI into property management has the potential to revolutionize the industry, empowering property managers to streamline operations, enhance tenant experiences, make data-driven decisions, improve energy efficiency, strengthen security measures, and gain valuable market insights.

By leveraging AI technologies, property managers can optimize resource allocation, reduce costs, and provide a higher level of service to tenants. As AI continues to evolve and advance, its potential in property management will grow, shaping the future of the industry in profound and positive ways.

But there is a learning curve with AI tools. Property managers can dip their toes into these sometimes-murky waters by using tools and apps that already integrate AI into their own processes.

For example, Buildium users can check out its Marketplace partners, some of which are using AI to automate business processes, enhance the tenant experience, and even manage investments.

To learn more, check out Buildium today.

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Laurie Mega

Laurie Mega has planned, written, and edited content on a variety of subjects. Her work has been published by HomeandGarden.com, The Economist, Philips Lifeline, and FamilyEducation, among others. She lives in the Greater Boston Area with her husband and two boys.

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