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My neighbor’s house won’t sell. Virtual staging would help

My neighbor’s house won’t sell. Virtual staging would help

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The house next to me isn’t selling. It’s surpassed 100 days on market, above the 63-day median, and the price has already “been improved” once by $100,000!

There’s no need to mention the specific brokerage or agent listing the home, but suffice it to say that despite a strong local reputation, I don’t think they’re doing a very good job.

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There’s no telling what my neighbor has authorized them to do in terms of marketing, but it’s clear she wants it sold, evident by months of internal improvements prior to listing and by her recent visits to tidy up the landscaping.

The home is empty and barren of decor. It also doesn’t boast a particularly intriguing floorplan. This is a byproduct of our town’s older inventory and it not being legally incorporated until the early 1990s, which meant that owners could do what they wanted with a home, and many did.

The region’s boom as a mountain resort market eventually impacted homeowners’ concern for property values and created unrealistic expectations for out-of-town buyers who expected every home to be “mountain modern” and ski-town chic.

Good or bad, agents need to do what they can to make the home meet these expectations.

Thankfully, even when a home doesn’t meet buyers’ hopes, there are a number of virtual staging companies that can at least give aspiring buyers an idea of what the house could be.

8 virtual staging companies that can help get the deal done

Virtual staging is becoming an increasingly easy and affordable way to market a stale listing. Here are a number of software companies that excel in making empty homes meet market expectations.

Box Brownie

These guys have been at it for a long time now, and established the rapid turn-around model for property image enhancement, inside and out. They can do decluttering (the last thing this house needs), 3D tours, exterior enhancements and new construction renderings.

SnapSnapSnap, the company’s mobile photography enhancer, is impressive, and it could do a lot for my neighbor.

Virtual Staging AI

Relatively new to the scene, this company does exactly what its name suggests — uses AI to craft a virtual interior.

The user only needs to upload a high-quality image and choose the room type from a drop-down list, such as a bathroom, kitchen, bedroom, living room, and so on. Images are rendered as you wait, and they can be redone if the first iteration isn’t what you’re looking for. The style defaults to mid-century modern, but new interior design themes are being regularly added.

HomeKynd

This service stands out for its enterprise-level brokerage integration. It offers several different styles to select from, meaning team leaders and marketing staff can ensure agents don’t use the same items from house to house, for example.

They can also better report on what homes sell faster because of being staged and even what furnishing brand gets the best results. Remember, staging is a marketing asset; use what it gives you. The listing page integration is a super-smart way to engage buyers directly with the listing and even suggests that, when posting the home, it can be beneficial to leave a couple of rooms vacant to entice the home shopper to start designing.

Matterport

The industry standard-setter for digital twins (the house in question has one) partnered with SketchFab in 2022 to begin integrating virtual interior improvements.

Objects from Sketchfab can be still or animated, and like all other aspects of a Matterport tour, they can be “walked by” and considered from different angles. The company is known for working with a number of prominent consumer goods manufacturers in the creation and publishing of 3D renderings for marketing, sales and product configuration.

Bella Staging

Bella Staging uses actual graphic artists to edit, renovate, declutter and basically make your seller’s home look like the best on the block. Most projects are returned in 48 hours and include unlimited revisions.

Bella asks, with good reason, for high-quality images from which to initiate its editing process. This shouldn’t be a big ask, but unfortunately, far too many agents still don’t understand the importance of a good kitchen photo.

Bella Staging is as good as I’ve seen in this category, and there’s no doubt its bespoke handling of each project is a big reason for its top-of-category quality.

VSH Media

One particular standout is the in-image notes tool. Users can tap on a place in the photo to attach instructions to the editors before uploading. Use it to instruct creators on where you want couches placed or to indicate you want stools placed around the breakfast bar.

Speaking of decor, VSH Media comes with a library of home styles, such as Farmhouse, Contemporary, Hamptons, Urban, Traditional or combinations of each. There’s also item removal available, and “enhanced” images provide basically the same bracketing/image fusion tech that other apps in this space use to make window exteriors look good from inside.

Asteroom

Like a number of mobile applications in this space, Asteroom uses a rotating phone mount timed to pivot and shoot to capture a room. The rotating mount turns your phone into a 360-degree camera and pairs automatically with your device via Bluetooth (BLE 4.0). A single tap of the “capture” command in the app starts the process. The device will stop turning once all the way around, and the user moves on to the next room.

The app allows for an array of text designs, links, information tags, floating still images (for detail shots like appliance close-ups or a view through a window), and even logos to be presented for interaction within the app. You can also add 3D objects to virtually stage an empty space.

InsideMaps

Another veteran of interior home data marketing, InsideMaps built its reputation on tours like Matterport but has evolved to become a valuable insights tool for all things real estate.

Virtual staging is merely one of its many capabilities, and it may not be the best match for my neighbor’s home because of its pedestrian and sub-1,500-square-foot size. Still, the company’s expertise and many added value propositions make it a worthwhile consideration for freeing a stuck listing.

Curb appeal counts, too

Curb appeal matters, and it’s another component of this house’s lengthy time on the market. There is no design or formal plan for what surrounds the home, merely an old set of steps, a lot of weeds, random stones and some short sections of garden hose lying about. It needs a total overhaul, and thankfully, most of the companies listed here can do exterior renderings, too.

Computer vision AI company Restb.ai has the numbers that show homes with high-end exterior photography, especially twilight edits, spend less time on the market. Given that we overlook a river and a ski resort, I can’t help but think some enhanced shots of the exterior would go a long way toward enticing a buyer.

It wouldn’t hurt for the agent to engage in video marketing, either. An engaging walk-through that better explains the home’s potential and its location would absolutely help, and it could be repurposed for social and web.

I know the market’s weird right now, and in small, expensive markets, it can be even harder to sell. But when so much more can clearly be done and isn’t, the market will only continue to suffer.

Email Craig Rowe

What to Do When a Tenant Violates the Lease: A Landlord’s Guide

What to Do When a Tenant Violates the Lease: A Landlord’s Guide

A lease is a binding legal contract that includes protections for both the landlord and tenant. Just as you are required to uphold your end of the agreement as the landlord, tenants also have certain obligations they are required to uphold.

You have discretion in determining what to do when a tenant violates the lease. It doesn’t always have to lead to an eviction. It depends on the severity of the violation and other factors, like a medical emergency, temporary job loss, or something else.

Common Tenant Lease Violations

Leases can be customized to include whatever you like. You could add clauses that cover parking, guest restrictions, home business use, and other terms. 

Here are some of the most common lease violations that you may encounter.

Non-payment of rent

The timely collection of rent each month is vital to your success as a landlord. You need the money to make your monthly note payments and to earn a profit. It’s so important that lease agreements typically include rent payment clauses.

A tenant who falls behind on paying rent is more than an inconvenience. It could jeopardize your investment. In addition to causing financial strain, the lack of rental income could force you to delay making needed repairs, which could affect your other tenants in a multiunit property.

Unauthorized occupants or pets

If a renter lets someone who is unauthorized stay with them, it could exceed the number of people who can safely live in the property. Unauthorized occupants may not be covered under your landlord’s insurance policy, which could increase your liability. It could also be a fire code violation.

Many landlords prohibit pets for good reason. They can be loud, can damage your property, and can also pose health and safety risks, like when a tenant has an aggressive dog or there is a flea infestation. A neighbor could also be allergic to certain animals.

Property damage

If a tenant is negligent or willfully damages your property, dealing with it could take up your valuable time and cause stress. Although your landlord insurance policy will cover some issues, it could also lead to premium increases. For all other repairs, you will either have to pay for the damages yourself or sue the tenant. In some cases, the damage could be severe. 

Situations you may encounter include:

  • Water damage from overflowing bathtubs
  • Fire damage from smoking indoors
  • Plumbing damage from flushing inappropriate items
  • Stains, mold, and odor from inadequate cleaning

In cases involving severe damage, the tenant may have to move out, and you will have a loss of rental income until the repairs are completed. If the damage is from a fire or burst pipe, it could also affect other units.

For more information on this, check out our landlord’s guide on dealing with emergency repairs.

Noise and disturbances

Your tenants should be able to enjoy peace and quiet in and around their rentals. If they constantly deal with loud music or TVs, barking dogs, or disruptive parties, it may give them a valid reason to break their lease agreements and move out. It could also give your properties a bad reputation.

Loud noises and disturbances could also cause conflict among your tenants. The police may have to be called to deal with these situations.

Illegal activities

Illegal activities could negatively impact the reputation of your property, which could make it harder to find quality tenants. It could also attract those who disrupt the local peace, like people buying drugs.

Some common illegal activities to watch for include:

  • Drug manufacturing and dealing
  • Gambling
  • Domestic violence
  • Theft of property
  • Disturbing the peace

Illegal activity on your rental property could result in some additional negative consequences, like a decrease in the value of your property, increased insurance premiums, loss of rental income, and increased maintenance costs. Because of these potential consequences, illegal activity should be dealt with as soon as possible to prevent further damage to your investment.

Assessing the Severity of Tenant Lease Violations

The severity of the lease violation should be considered when determining what to do. Is it a minor violation, or is it something serious that could affect your income and the peace and safety of your other tenants?

A one-time late rent payment, for example, is technically a lease violation, but you may choose to overlook it if it’s from a long-term tenant who has always paid on time. It’s important to consider whether something minor and infrequent is worth evicting a tenant over, or whether other measures—like making arrangements with the tenant—are more practical solutions.

A serious tenant violation is one that significantly disrupts the harmony of your community. It could also result in costly repairs or harm to the reputation of your property, or tie you up in legal disputes. If a violation is serious or recurring, removing the tenant may be the only way to solve the problem.

Always be consistent and fair when dealing with lease violations. If tenants know you gave someone a pass on a serious violation but you evict someone else for the same thing, they may no longer respect or trust you. It could lead to tenant disagreements, and it could also make it harder to resolve future issues.

Handling Tenant Lease Violations: A Step-by-Step Guide

How you handle a lease violation can affect the outcome. If you are professional about the situation and give the tenant a chance to fix the problem, you may be able to solve it without having to file an eviction lawsuit.

The following steps can help you deal with a lease violation the next time one occurs.

1. Document the violation

If a lease violation occurs, you need to collect evidence in case you have to go to court for damages or to evict. Also document both the violation and the steps you take to work things out with the tenant. The more detailed your records, the more evidence to support the eviction.

Be sure to hang on to all evidence that relates to the violation, including:

  • Rent payment records
  • Written communications
  • Photos and videos
  • Police reports
  • Inspection reports
  • Repair records and receipts
  • Security camera footage
  • Legal documents

2. Communicate with the tenant

You must inform the tenant of a lease violation in writing. Sending a letter by certified mail gives you proof that you notified the tenant and the letter was received. The letter should be professional and include a detailed description of the violation and the date it occurred or was discovered.

The letter should also state the evidence you have of the violation and what you expect the tenant to do. It should also give the tenant an opportunity to correct the situation, as well as clearly communicate what will happen if they don’t comply by a certain date.

3. Provide an opportunity for the tenant to fix the violation

The opportunity you give a tenant to fix the violation can be as simple as telling them to stop doing something. If they are throwing disruptive parties, for example, telling them they can’t have any more parties may be sufficient.

Tenants may need some time to fix certain violations. If someone is keeping an unauthorized pet, for example, giving them a week to remove it gives them the time they need to find it a new home. If the violation involves past due rent, you could give the tenant a specific date to pay by.

4. Initiate eviction process when necessary

Despite your best efforts, you may encounter a situation where an eviction is necessary. If a tenant continues to violate the lease terms or doesn’t fix a violation by a certain date, you may have to remove them to preserve the harmony of your rental community and maintain cash flow.

Be sure to send a written notice to vacate the property. Local and state landlord-tenant laws will dictate how much time you need to give someone to move out. If the tenant is still occupying your property after the move-out date passes, you will have to file an eviction lawsuit.

Tips for Preventing Tenant Lease Violations

There are some things you can do to prevent lease violations from occurring. Although they will require some extra work upfront, they may save you headaches down the road.

Thorough tenant screening

Although it may be impossible to prevent all lease violations, making sure you have the best renters you can find can help minimize problems. You can do that by thoroughly screening tenants.

There are several things you can do to evaluate applicants before they sign the lease and you hand them the keys:

  • Perform a credit check
  • Conduct a criminal background check
  • Require proof of income
  • Verify employment history
  • Contact references

Be sure to use your intuition when evaluating tenants. A tenant could lie and say a reference is a former landlord when that person is actually a friend, for example. Although finding the right tenant may take a while, it could be time well spent if it prevents future violations.

When screening tenants, be sure you comply with all fair housing laws. The same screening process should be used with all applicants so you don’t run into discrimination issues.

Clear communication of lease terms and expectations

Your lease should be easy to read and understand so tenants will know what is expected of them. It should be written in plain language, with limited use of legal jargon to prevent confusion. Your lease should outline both the tenant’s and landlord’s responsibilities. 

Here are some common things a lease agreement should include:

  • Rent due date and late fee
  • Pet policy
  • Security deposit information
  • Alterations to the property
  • Cleaning and maintenance
  • Number of occupants allowed and subletting

Tenants should understand the terms of the lease and what is expected of them. Be sure to ask new tenants if they have any questions about the lease before they sign it so you can address their concerns. After the lease is signed, mail or drop off a copy to them.

Regular property inspections

Being proactive about regular rental property inspections is a great way to catch small problems before they become big issues. The frequency of inspections is up to you, but they could be quarterly, biannual, or annual. Before you inspect a property, follow the entry notification requirements where your property is located to be compliant with landlord-tenant laws.

Be sure to use a checklist when inspecting properties to make sure you don’t miss anything. Also, share the results of the inspection with the tenant. The property inspection isn’t just for your benefit—it’s also a way to keep your tenants informed.

Fostering positive landlord-tenant relationships

Your tenants should feel comfortable coming to you if there’s a problem. If they have trouble contacting you or if they believe you will be dismissive of their concerns, they may postpone telling you something important. If a tenant doesn’t tell you about a roof leak, for example, it could result in major damage if it isn’t quickly addressed.

Foster a positive landlord-tenant relationship by encouraging tenants to reach out if they have any questions or concerns. Be sure to respond as soon as possible and quickly take care of repairs to keep your property in good condition. Also, if a tenant experiences a temporary hardship, consider being flexible until they can get back on their feet.

Final Thoughts

Tenant lease violations aren’t just an inconvenience; they can also affect your landlord insurance. Some violations, like property damage or illegal activities, could result in coverage denial, increased premiums, or other problems.

Doing everything you can to minimize the possibility of violations benefits both you and your tenants. It helps to ensure that your property is a peaceful, safe place for everyone to live. It also helps with cash flow, saves time, reduces stress, and protects your valuable landlord insurance policy.

Save time and money with this refreshing guide to managing your own properties.

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Note By BiggerPockets: These are opinions written by the author and do not necessarily represent the opinions of BiggerPockets.

DOJ inquiry delays settlement-related document rollout at CAR

DOJ inquiry delays settlement-related document rollout at CAR

The California Association of Realtors postponed the release of 21 forms this week after receiving feedback from members — and an inquiry from the U.S. Department of Justice.

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The California Association of Realtors (CAR) this week delayed the rollout of nearly two dozen new forms dealing with the NAR commission suit settlement after getting an inquiry from the U.S. Department of Justice.

The Golden State trade group confirmed the delay to Inman Friday, with CAR General Counsel Brian Manson saying in an email that each June the organization “updates its standard forms to reflect the latest legal requirements and best practices in real estate transactions. This year, CAR prepared 67 new and revised forms for release next week.”

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“Out of an abundance of caution, CAR is postponing the release of 21 of those forms, which are associated with the changes in business practices required by the NAR settlement,” Manson continued. “CAR has received an inquiry from the [U.S. Department of Justice] regarding these forms as well as extensive feedback from our members. We believe it is prudent to take additional time to consider the concerns comprehensively.”

CAR did not provide additional details about the forms, nor did it described the nature of the DOJ’s inquiry. The U.S. Department of Justice did not respond to Inman’s request for comment. Real estate strategist Rob Hahn first posted about the forms and DOJ inquiry on Twitter Friday.

Though details about what happened are scarce, the DOJ inquiry and document rollout delay come at a significant moment. The real estate industry is currently grappling with how to implement new rules such as a prohibition on sellers’ agents making offers of compensation to buyers’ agents in MLSs affiliated with the National Association of Realtors. Such rules were the result of a major antitrust settlement the National Association of Realtors negotiated earlier this year.

The settlement-prompted rules are set to go into effect in August, and the industry has spent much of the spring trying to figure out what exactly will allowed and how the practice of buying and selling homes might have to evolve.

Against that backdrop, however, many eyes have been on the DOJ, which has indicated it wants significant changes such as “decoupling” — meaning sellers’ agents do not preemptively offer compensation to buyers’ agents, as often happens today — to agent compensation. The DOJ has been a wildcard through the antitrust commission saga because it was unclear how aggressive the agency might be in pushing for change.

Though the DOJ remains something of a wildcard, the inquiry into CAR’s legal and business forms shows at least that, while questions remain, the agency is still busy behind the scenes looking closely at the real estate industry.

Email Jim Dalrymple II

Entrata buys Colleen AI in bid for property management autonomy

Entrata buys Colleen AI in bid for property management autonomy

Software company Entrata acquired its second company in a year with the acquisition of the rental industry’s Colleen, which provides artificial intelligence-based tenant communications and leasing operation support.

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Software company Entrata has acquired Colleen AI, an artificial intelligence-based tenant communication tool, executives announced Thursday. Terms of the deal — Entrata’s second in the past 12 months — were not disclosed.

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Entrata plans to roll out what it calls “Autonomous Property Management,” which will make “workflows increasingly automated and portfolios more efficient while simultaneously delivering an elevated resident experience,” according to the announcement. Powering that vision will be what comes from the Colleen AI deal, a product called ELI+, or an enhanced version of Entrata Layered Intelligence.

Entrata CEO Adam Edmunds said the acquisition will augment the company’s Autonomous Property Management initiative, adding that it “significantly accelerates our vision.”

“Through this combination, operators can power end-to-end automated workflows and interactions,” Edmunds said in a statement. “This, in turn, will allow teams to concentrate on meaningful resident connection and high impact tasks to positively impact the resident experience and, ultimately, NOI.”

ELI+ will be layered in the existing solution’s many components to add pace, data accuracy and enterprise-wide connectivity by closing the distance between data gaps, enabling features to react faster and given human decisions better levels of clarity and justification.

“There are thousands of data variables within the Entrata OS, and ELI+ leverages all of them to automate and contextualize every interaction — a clear advantage over other, non-native AI solutions.” the release stated.

One such product example of how AI will better server property managers day-to-day will be evident in what’s called “Conversational Context Switching,” according to the company.

The process allows each tenant interaction to be immediately contextualized with the resident’s goal for reaching out, and then automatically leverage the resident’s occupancy history to address other potential discussion points, such as a problematic payment method or renewal interest. This kind of automation keeps the individual engaged, prevents fragmented communications and bolsters overall interaction quality.

“One of the key challenges to effective AI is high-quality and current data,” said Itamar Roth, CEO and co-founder of Colleen AI, in a statement. “By introducing Colleen AI as native technology to the Entrata OS, the efficacy will be unmatched in the multifamily industry, dramatically accelerating the possibilities for autonomy in many areas that don’t exist today. We are thrilled about the innovation potential this combination brings.”

Other products being shipped in conjunction with the acquisition include a new suite of property management tools focused on the resident experience called PMS, Homebody, a “a fully integrated resident financial services offering.” and a utilities component to streamline billing and maintenance activities.

In July 2023, Entrata acquired Rent Dynamics, a system for reporting on-time rent payment history to credit bureaus.

Colleen rolled out a voice AI for rent collection earlier in 2024, Inman previously reported. Colleen Voice is believed to be an industry first, a conversational experience originating from property management software that can contact tenants to inquire about late rent, fees, specific amounts and other critical lease terms.

Entrata states it serves more than 20,000 apartment communities and three million residents.

Email Craig Rowe

Fathom’s Verus Title subsidiary acquires LW Traveling Title

Fathom’s Verus Title subsidiary acquires LW Traveling Title

Fathom Holdings beefs up title coverage in three states with “strategic addition” to geographic footprint, acquiring nine-person title agency with offices in Utah, Colorado and Virginia.

At Inman Connect Las Vegas, July 30-Aug. 1 2024, the noise and misinformation will be banished, all your big questions will be answered, and new business opportunities will be revealed. Join us.

Fathom Realty’s sister company, Verus Title, is beefing up its coverage in three states with parent company Fathom Holdings’ acquisition of Utah-based LW Traveling Title.

Real Estate Mergers & Acquisitions Co. facilitated the deal for both parties, on terms that were not disclosed. Based in American Fork, Traveling Title‘s nine team members also provide services out of offices in St. George, Utah; Colorado Springs, Colorado; and Buena Vista, Virginia.

Marco Fregenal

“Utah, with its thriving real estate market, is a strategic addition to our geographic footprint,” Fathom Holdings CEO Marco Fregenal said in a statement. “With the addition of Traveling Title, Verus Title is poised to leverage its technology tools and exceptional service commitment to deliver unparalleled service in Utah, Colorado, and Virginia. This expansion underscores Fathom’s commitment to providing comprehensive and innovative real estate solutions.”

Paul Yurashevich

Verus Title President Paul Yurashevich said that with the technology tools Verus brings to the table, “we have a winning formula for best-in-class title products in the state.”

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Fathom Holdings generates more than 90 percent of its revenue through Fathom Realty, its real estate brokerage business, but also provides mortgages, title insurance, insurance and technology for agents.

After going public in 2020, Fathom acquired North Carolina-based Verus Title for $1.7 million — $700,000 in cash, and $1 million in Fathom stock.

Fathom’s 2021 $28.88 million acquisition of E4:9 Holdings and two other subsidiaries, Encompass Lending Group and Real Results, furthered the company’s goal of building an end-to-end real estate services platform.

Verus Title locations

Source: Verus Title.

A technology-focused title agency, Verus works with underwriters including Chicago Title, WFG, Fidelity, Old Republic and Stewart and has expanded its licensing footprint to 31 states and Washington, D.C.

Like many of its competitors, Fathom has seen a decline in revenue as elevated mortgage rates slow home sales, but has continued to add agents and trim its losses. Fathom Realty grew to nearly 12,000 agents during the first quarter, and parent company Fathom Holdings trimmed its net loss by 30 percent from Q4, to $5.9 million.

In April, Fathom launched a new joint venture, Verus Title Elite Texas LLC, with individual teams and top-producing Fathom agents throughout Texas. Fathom said it plans to have joint ventures in most of the 30 states where its Verus Title subsidiary operates by the end of 2025.

Fathom Holdings announced in May it had sold its insurance subsidiary, Dagley Insurance, back to founder Nathan Dagley for $15 million, and would the proceeds to strengthen the company’s financial position and support growth initiatives.

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Email Matt Carter

StackWrap makes sense of your tech-stack: Tech Review

StackWrap makes sense of your tech-stack: Tech Review

Indie broker Max Fitzgerald built this app to be the top layer of brokerage tech stack, enabling better organization, access and understanding of its most-used tools.

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StackWrap is software for consolidating access to a brokerage’s tech stack.

Platforms: Web
Ideal for: Tech-forward brokerages, teams

Top selling points:

  • Flexible user experience
  • Easy product/account integration
  • Granular admin controls
  • Highly scalable to brokerage size
  • Current partner product selection

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Top concerns:

This application may encounter integration issues as its growing user base suggests more complex and sophisticated linkages. I suspect some added controls and directives related to what can become part of the system will be necessary.

What you should know

StackWrap is productivity software that serves as a top layer to a brokerage’s tech stack, enabling better organization, access and understanding of a company’s most-used applications. The solution was built by Max Fitzgerald, who owns the independent brokerage Craft & Bauer.

Users can connect any number of common systems — Follow Up Boss, SkySlope, their MLS, etc. — to the StackWrap interface, giving them a single place to begin their workday. The primary dashboard offers a modern, smart layout with a simple navigation design that allows one-click access to what you need when.

Need to check-in on an agreement signature? Click your DocuSign link. Did a new lead sign up for a newsletter? Hop into Mailchimp or SendGrid to see what’s what.

There are feature panels that list notifications, tasks, transactions and a daily calendar, all fueled by the respective product.

Beyond StackWrap’s inherent administrative flexibility, each panel can be resized, moved around and altered as needed to design as efficient a physical space as an operational one.

Admins can add products with a few clicks, require the product’s API code and decide in what category it should live. Savvy agents can set up hierarchies, such as “Productivity,” “Marketing,” “Communications” and “Internal,” for example. It can do what you want it to.

The intent of StackWrap is to make sense of all the disparate logins and domains an agent must interact with to function.

Through my own reporting, and backed by Fitzgerald’s impetus for creating the product, we know that agents are often given too many products to work with or eschew. This can make recruiting pitches from your competitors all the more attractive because of how a wooing brokerage may handle their technology.

In short, technology tools can all be too much for agents at times, which contributes to a lack of adoption or, worse, a general apathy toward tech.

A valuable byproduct of this software is that it can help brokerages better monitor what products get the most use and reveal product redundancies.

Because the admin can impersonate agent users, it becomes easy to oversee what software agents use (and for what) or to measure login frequency, for example. This is great data for deciding if licenses should be renewed or if account levels can be reduced in some way.

Think of StackWrap as your software foyer or receiving area. The entryway to your tech stack.

It has its own features, too. It can be arranged by teams or across offices, and again, the admin flexibility is impressive, even if most brokers will pass off such roles to marketing staff or ops executives, which is fine.

As I told Fitzgerald in our demo, I’m always happy to look at products that are trying to find ways to internalize efficiency. He’s not necessarily adding to the proptech noise; he’s offering a way to control its volume.

Have a technology product you would like to discuss? Email Craig Rowe

Craig C. Rowe started in commercial real estate at the dawn of the dot-com boom, helping an array of commercial real estate companies fortify their online presence and analyze internal software decisions. He now helps agents with technology decisions and marketing through reviewing software and tech for Inman.