How to Choose the Best Smart Access Control System for Your Rental Property

Traditional locks and keys can create headaches for you, your team, and renters. Having to keep track of physical keys and inevitably losing them can be frustrating for tenants and guests. Plus, lost keys create extra work for your team. 

Physical keys also pose a security risk because they can be easily copied or stolen. Unauthorized people could have access to your property without you or your team knowing. This can jeopardize the safety of your tenants/guests, team members, and property. 

Moreover, manually managing access can be a time suck for your team. Having to manually let in visitors/vendors, rekey locks when tenants move out, help guests/tenants access units, and other access control tasks can make it hard for your team to get everything done. 

If you want to avoid the headaches of traditional locks and keys, smart access control could be for you. With the right smart access control system, you can streamline access, improve the tenant experience, boost revenue, and more. 

Wondering how to find the right smart access control system for your rental property? That’s what we’ll cover in this post. Before getting into how to choose a smart access control system, let’s take a look at what smart access control is.

What is smart access control?

A smart access control system uses software and hardware to control entry to and exit from your rental property. 

Hardware for smart access control systems (like smart locks), allows you, your team, tenants/guests, vendors, visitors, and more to enter and exit your property without traditional keys. Instead, anyone who wants access to your property can use a code, keycard, smartphone app, or another keyless entry method. 

Smart access controls software helps you and your team monitor access to your rental property. This software provides entry and exit logs. It also allows you to set access permissions (like restricting an area to team members only) for tenants, team members, and anyone else on your property. With this software, you and your team can also grant remote access to your property. 

Access control hardware and software work together to make accessing your property easy and convenient for tenants, guests, team members, visitors, and more. 

What are the benefits of a smart access control system?

Now that you know what smart access control is, you might be wondering why you should use it at your rental property. Here are the top smart access control benefits you could see:

Increased security 

One major benefit of smart access control is improved security. Traditional locks require physical keys. It’s easy for someone to steal or copy traditional keys to gain unauthorized access. Plus, many traditional locks are easy to pick or break into. Even though you have locks on your property, traditional locks may not help you keep tenants and guests safe. 

With smart access control, you can eliminate traditional keys. Instead, tenants and guests can use a code or smartphone app to access units, rooms, and amenities. This eliminates the potential for stolen or copied keys. And, many smart locks are harder to break into than traditional locks – which boosts security and helps tenants/guests feel safe at your property. 

Better tenant and guest experience 

A smart access control system can also create a better tenant and guest experience. Tenants and guests want a seamless, high-tech experience. This includes being able to access your property and amenities with their smartphone or other keyless access methods. With traditional access control, you can’t provide the high-tech experience tenants and guests want. 

With smart access control, you can digitize tenant and guest entry, exit, and amenity access. Some smart access control systems also provide a tenant/guest smartphone app. By providing tenants with seamless, digital access control, you can create the high-tech experience they expect – leading to higher retention and reviews.

Boost revenue 

Another benefit of smart access control is that it can help you increase revenue. Smart locks are a top amenity tenants and guests want. 75% of tenants are willing to pay more for smart home tech like smart locks. 

A smart access control system can provide tenants/guests with the technology they’re willing to pay more for. So, you can increase what you charge for rent or guest stays – boosting revenue and making your property more profitable. 

Reduced workload

The last benefit of smart access control is that it can reduce work for you and your team. Traditional locks require constant work – like rekeying and replacing lost keys. Plus, you or your team have to manually manage access control with traditional locks, which requires more staff or longer hours for existing staff. 

Smart access control eliminates traditional keys and the need for rekeying. Many smart access control systems also automate entry and exit monitoring, letting visitors/vendors in, and other access control tasks. With this software, you and your team have less access control work – allowing you to focus on what matters (like creating a great tenant/guest experience). 

How can you choose the right smart access control system?

You now know how smart access control can help your property. So, it’s time to choose the right smart access control system for your rental property. Here’s how to make the best choice:

Step 1: Note all access points

Before choosing a smart access control system, you need to know what entry and exit points you want to cover. You might want to cover all units/rooms, common areas, parking garages, maintenance areas, or any combination of entry and exit points. 

Step 2: Decide on replacement vs. retrofit 

Once you know what access points you want to cover, you need to decide whether you want to replace all access control hardware or retrofit it. 

Replacement is more expensive. However, replacement also allows you to choose the latest hardware with better security and more features tenants/guests want. 

Retrofitting existing hardware is more cost-effective. When retrofitting, you’ll have fewer hardware choices and potentially lose out on features. 

Step 3: Determine access type 

After determining retrofitting vs. replacement, you should consider what access type you want. Depending on the smart lock, you can use access methods like a keycard, code, smartphone app, or biometrics. 

How you want tenants/guests, team members, visitors, vendors, and others to access your property determines the type of access control hardware you should get. So, if you want tenants/guests to use a smartphone app to enter and exit, you should look for a smart lock with smartphone access options.  

Step 4: Consider connectivity 

Next, you should consider connectivity. Smart devices use different connectivity methods to talk to each other. You can choose from Bluetooth, WiFi, Z-Wave, Zigbee, and radio connectivity. Not all access control hardware or software supports every connectivity method. So, the connectivity you choose will be determined by your hardware and software choices. 

Step 5: Decide on integration

Some access control systems are point solutions. This means that they only help with access control. If you want to manage other aspects of your property (like maintenance or tenant communication) with tech, you’ll need to adopt additional tech. 

Any additional tech you adopt needs to be able to talk to your access control system. Integration allows different software to talk to each other. If you choose a smart access control point solution, you should look for wide software integration. That way, you can adopt tech that works with your access control system. 

You can also choose a smart access control system that’s part of a larger property and device management platform. If you go this route, you’ll be able to manage every aspect of your property from one, easy-to-use platform. 

With a complete platform, you don’t have to worry as much about property management software integration. Since everything you need to manage your property is already on one platform, every system can already communicate with each other.  

Integration also comes into play with smart access control hardware. Some access control systems only support a few connectivity types (like WiFi or Z-Wave). If you want to have a lot of hardware options, you should look for a smart access control system with wide device integration. 

Step 6: Choose your must-have features 

Smart access control systems can come with a wide range of features, like:

  • Entry/exit logs
  • Access notifications
  • Tenant/guest mobile app
  • Access reports
  • Dashboards 
  • Visitor management
  • Device and software integration 
  • Tenant/guest communication

Your rental property may not need every access control feature. So, you should consider what your must-have features are. If your must-haves are access logs, reporting, and tenant/guest app, you can eliminate any access control systems that don’t have those features. By focusing on your must-have features, you can find the right access control solution for your rental property. 

BeHome247 Smart Access Control 

Now that you know the steps to find the right smart access control system, it’s time to choose one for your property. BeHome247 is the best smart access control system for most rental properties.

BeHome247’s smart access control system has best-in-class security and works with most access control hardware. As a device-agnostic platform with wide integration, BeHome247 works with most smart locks, regardless of connectivity type. 

Additionally, BeHome247 is a complete property and device management platform for multifamily, single-family, vacation rental, and hospitality properties. With BeHome247, you can manage and automate access control, property management, smart device management, and more – from a single, easy-to-use platform.

Along with being an all-in-one platform, BeHome247 is also a middleware solution. As such, BeHome247 works with legacy tech and can add new features (like EV charging). That way, you can continue to use any existing tech that works for you with BeHome247 smart access control. 

Whether you’re looking for just smart access control or a complete property and device management platform, BeHome247 has what you need. 

Book your BeHome247 demo today to see how smart access control can help you boost revenue, impress tenants, and reduce your workload. 

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