Skip to main content

Maxwell Systems ‘ Colonial Property Management

With each new release, Colonial Property Management software continues to reinvent itself. This excellent product is a perfect fit for top line management companies looking for software that can do everything, and do it well.

EASE OF USE – 5 Stars
Colonial Systems is easily installed, and company setup is quick and efficient. The system will prompt you to enter system information, including company and project information, user information, security codes, account and group information. Company and user information must be entered prior to accessing the system. Once company information has been entered, you can access the system and continue entering system information, including unit, tenant, vendor and account information. The property management setup screen is comprehensive. Colonial Systems supports mixed usage, so you can enter square footage or percentage information for each corresponding space type. User-defined fields, a tickler file and a notes feature allow users to customize the system to suit their needs. Open architecture allows easy integration with third-party software systems such as Microsoft Word and Excel, as well as other software vendors.

FEATURES – 5 Stars
Colonial Systems Property Management fully integrates with GL, AP and AR modules, as well as the Construction modules. This makes Colonial Systems a good fit for management/development firms who need to track both existing properties, as well as keep an eye on existing and future construction. Colonial Systems is set up to handle multiple property types, including residential, commercial and retail.

Since last year’s review, the company has added plenty of new features, including new drill-down capability for financial statements, the ability to have multiple program windows open simultaneously, a more efficient help system and better access to security deposit information. The Bank Reconciliation feature has added several new or enhanced features, as well. Keeping in mind the importance of user flexibility, Colonial Systems offers user-defined unit and building types. The Maintain Tenant information screen is one of the most comprehensive I have seen, with detailed information on deposits, square footage, increases, renewals and payment information. The Executive Information System (EIS) is a one-click reporting and information system designed to provide quick, convenient and relevant information on any or all properties. You can quickly view property information, tenant AR balances, lease expiration dates, and expected move-in and move-out dates. For retail property managers, Colonial Systems tracks and maintains tenant sales figures and easily processes common area maintenance charges.

All Colonial Systems modules integrate to create a powerful system that is capable of handling an assortment of property types as noted earlier. Along with the Property/ Construction Management module, Colonial Systems offers a Property Forecasting Tool that assists with budget forecasting and a tenant services function that automates the important task of tracking tenant service requests. The Electronic Banking feature allows you to electronically process lockbox receipts. Tenants can also pay rent electronically, with payment posting and funds deposited into a specified bank account simultaneously. Using this feature will drastically cut down on paperwork. The Information Management System is included in all Colonial System modules and allows you to attach leases, bills or correspondence to any file. The advanced drill-down feature lets you view all the detail behind system files. Add-on modules available include Purchase Orders, Inventory Management, Work Order Management, Corporate AR Workflow and Investor Distribution.

Reports can be accessed using Colonial’s EIS, the Information Management System or by using the reporting options that are found in each module. The flexible query system allows you to create custom reporting options with standard reports. If you manage multiple properties, you can choose to run reports using a variety of methods, including Active Companies, All Companies, Regional Companies, or you can just select specific companies you wish to include. You can also choose to consolidate reporting information, which is a useful tool for gaining a more detailed, company-wide profile. Spreadsheet reports are easily printed to Microsoft Excel or saved as *.PDF files or e-mails when necessary.

When Maxwell Systems purchased Colonial Systems, it immediately upgraded the modules and user interfaces, making it a world-class property management software product. Over the past two years, Maxwell Systems has continued adding more features with each upgrade.

Product support is offered via an 800 number. Users can also get support via e-mail, fax or by using the new online customer support feature. Unlimited telephone support is offered as part of the company’s annual update program.

Colonial Systems Property Management will cost $3,000 for a single-user system and $9,000 for a five-user system, making this powerful software within reach of most mid-size to large companies. With its powerful, fully integrated property management/construction system, along with a host of available modules and add-ons, this truly is a good option for property managers and developers.


This review will hopefully answer some of your questions or at least point you in the right direction. We chose six areas to focus on for this review: Ease of Use, Features, Integration, Reporting, History & Support, and Relative Value.

Ease of Use is important, particularly for new users. How quickly can the system be set up? Is it easy to install? System Features gives readers information about the modules included with the system, whether there is an integrated accounting function, and whether or not there is an applicant module or a work order/maintenance module. Integration is also an important issue, particularly for large management companies running multiple software products. Reporting covers report processing ease, a summary of available report types, and whether customization or third-party reporting is an option. History & Support is another area to consider when making a software purchase. How long has the company been in business? What kind of customer support options are available? Is support included in the price of the software? Relative Value assesses whether the features that are included in the product are worth the cost?