You’re opening a new brokerage… it’s an exciting time! Whether you were a top producing agent or team at another brokerage or you’re taking your talents to a new city or state, growth is almost always what a new brokerage owner is aiming for. And technology is synonymous with growth, so you have some important decisions to make.
The first piece of software most new owners will agree is worth investing in is to recruit agents. It makes sense because the technology offering can also be a key part of your recruiting success. The second piece of software is a little trickier. Should you buy an accounting software designed for real estate brokerages? Should you use one that integrates with QuickBooks? Can you use QuickBooks alone?
QuickBooks for Real Estate
QuicksBooks is an ideal option for real estate brokerages for a lot of reasons:
- It saves a lot of time of time because many of the bookkeeping tasks are automated, making it easier to run your business.
- Your brokerage can grow with QuickBooks: whether you have 50 agents or 500, QuickBooks is designed to be flexible and scalable for growing businesses. With millions of users across North America, it is the most widely used accounting software in the market.
- QuickBooks can be customized to work the way you want it to.
- Integration options (e.g., credit card billing, your bank, etc.) are practically unlimited; QuickBooks connects to hundreds of business applications.
QuickBooks does have some limitations, though:
- It’s not specific to real estate, so you have to have to track things like commissions and trust/escrow manually. This is where integrating with real estate back office software is a lifesaver.
- It’s difficult for you to report on sales production and agent performance. Again, integrating QuickBooks with the right back office tool makes all the difference.
For these reasons, most new owners decide that QuickBooks alone won’t be enough to help them reach their goals for sales and growth.
Accounting Solutions Designed for Real Estate
Real estate accounting software can offer real benefits, particularly with respect to tracking items that are specific to the real estate vertical. Accounting software tailored for real estate will often already house most of the requirements needed to run your back office and some vendors—generally the more established ones with developers on staff—can offer customizations for specific needs.
But this type of software may also carry certain risks:
- System complexity often requires significant training lead time. If you have staff turnover, this is a risk. And you have to be confident that you could recover control if staff accountant or controller left.
- Integration options may be limited, resulting in manual data entry.
- Reports are often inflexible and not user friendly.
The Right Decision for Your New Brokerage
As always, the right choice is not going to be the same for everyone. For a majority of new broker/owners, QuickBooks plus an integrated commission management tool is the perfect fit. It’s an ideal way to start your business on a solid foundation. To find out more, check out the #1 back office solution for new brokerages.
We wish you the very best of luck in your new endeavor!