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American Computer Software — MANAGEMENT Plus

From the January 2006 Review of Property
Management Software

MANAGEMENT Plus provides a comprehensive property management system, with functions
for managing all phases, from tenant prospects, to move-in/move-out, managing
security deposits, tracking tenant and property histories, and service and work
order capabilities. The system includes some accounting features and also offers
integration with outside accounting packages. Pricing is based upon property
units being managed and the number of computers on which the system will be
installed. A package supporting up to 100 units costs about $1,100, including
support and system updates. The program is scalable to virtually any size company
and number of properties/units.

The MANAGEMENT Plus primary interface provides traditional pull-down menus and
an icon toolbar across the top, both providing access to the system’s
features. The system includes several wizards that assist in setting up the
program and creating property and tenant records, as well as assisting with
various tasks, such as move-ins and move-outs. These wizards and “setup
interviews” further guide users through tasks such as setting up contracts,
subsidized housing and system preferences. A tenants list is readily available
and displayed as a spreadsheet that shows various lease and tenant information
along with lease status.

Above the list, the system provides buttons for accessing the Tenant Ledger,
which is used for recording tenant interactions or performing lease transfers.
Other buttons include options for scheduling charges, escalations, managing
security deposits, OSR, certifications (for affordable housing compliance) and
work orders. Individual tenant and property information screens are intuitive,
with simplified data-entry fields and selection lists.

The system includes functions for traditional property management needs, such
as move-in/move-out, lease renewals, property/unit management, basic maintenance
functions, deposit management with interest option, pro-rating, late charge
assessment, transaction processing and receipt production. The system can also
track and maintain client correspondence electronically. Limited receivables
management is also built in, but the program is intended to work in concert
with a company’s accounting system. In addition to the maintenance and
service features, MANAGEMENT Plus includes a technician/vendor list that details
which workers are assigned to each particular unit and can be used for preventive
maintenance scheduling.

Several optional add-ons are also available, including advanced work order
and service management modules and an applicant processing system for monitoring
marketing efforts and tracking prospective tenants. Other add-ons include ACS
Compliance for managing multiple funding layers, including tax credits, project
and tenant-based HUD subsidies, TRACS, HOME and Bond compliance; Meter Reading
for calculating and allocation of multi-tenant utility bills; a Military privatized
housing application; the Waiting List; Demographics; and the LockBox. The company
does not offer a module for accepting electronic payments and credit cards.

MANAGEMENT Plus integrates with QuickBooks, Peachtree, MAS 90, Microsoft Small
Business Manager, Great Plains and BusinessWorks. An optional PDA interface
allows remote entry of tenant and property data, with the information synched
back into the main system upon return to the office. Data can also be imported
from outside systems and exported into various formats.

MANAGEMENT Plus’ Document Printing function allows setup of automated
printing tasks, such as customizable tenant notices and other correspondence.
The system’s standard reports include financial, unit occupancy/vacancy,
maintenance, marketing, list printing options and several periodic reports.
The system’s Letter Log manages tenant and prospect correspondence.

SUPPORT – 4.5 Stars
The built-in support system offers traditional assistance, and the vendor’s
web site offers access to a free searchable Knowledgebase and FAQ section. Four
support subscription packages are available, in addition to per-incident support.
Numerous training and workshops are offered.

MANAGEMENT Plus is one of the few property management applications on the market
that does not include a full GL and accounting system integrated into the program.
This may be to the advantage of companies satisfied with their current accounting
application and not wishing to invest the retraining effort of a new system,
but it might pose challenges for users of less functional accounting packages
or those with which MANAGEMENT Plus does not integrate. The system is best suited
to property management groups with smaller real estate holdings.

2006 Overall Rating – 4 Stars