SFR investors collect and utilize property data for various reasons, but surprisingly, many do not take advantage of the full gamut of benefits. In a recent nationwide survey we conducted, PlanOmatic found that out of a total of 1,893 responses, property data collected onsite was mostly used for property maintenance purposes, which accounted for 24.9% of the total responses.
This was followed by portfolio forecasting, which showed a slightly lower contribution at 21.4%; and renovations and acquisitions represented 19.6% and 17.6% respectively. In stark contrast, the category with the lowest percentage of responses included valuation, accounting for 16.5%.
When asked which data points SFR investors need to assess a property acquisition and/or determine maintenance, where respondents could select from multiple choices, geographic location (busy street, commercial district) ranked the highest with 6.5% of the vote. This was followed in a second-place tie by “basement or crawl space” and “exterior general condition” with 5.7%. With a slightly lower percentage, 5.3%, “exterior surface” was the third most important data point needed.
Scoping repairs for SFR properties is crucial for investors in order to thoughtfully plan for renovation costs and turn estimate time. According to PlanOmatic’s survey, RenoWalk is the most used software amongst SFR investors and owners for scoping repairs, accounting for 29.3% of the total responses. The second most used software is HappyCo with 28.6% of total responses. Facilio and Xactware are ranked third and fourth, representing 26.8% and 14.6% respectively.
The nationwide survey was conducted Nov. 2–4, consisting of an online survey of 1,893 respondents comprised of SFR investors, owners, and developers.
The booming SFR market is showing no signs of slowing down as investors bet that demand for suburban homes will continue to support higher rents. Investors are looking for ways to gain a competitive advantage, and as such, the focus on how property data and technology solutions aimed at optimizing both investment strategies and property management processes has become even more important.
Traditional home inspections work great for traditional home buyers. Investors and property managers need something different. The details about the location, renovation specifics, and rentability of a property are key factors in the due diligence process. Our nationwide survey indicates only a small percentage of SFR investors, owners, operators, and property managers are taking advantage of the key data points that are readily available at every property.
Property data and technology will continue to play an increasingly key role in the SFR space in 2022 and it’s time for investors to take advantage of the benefits to stay ahead of the competition.