Stessa vs. Competitors: Rental Property Management Review

What Is Stessa?

Stessa is an accounting and portfolio management software for rental property investors and landlorrds. It allows users to easily track the performance of their real estate investments, manage expenses and income, and generate detailed financial reports. Stessa aims to help rental property owners maximize returns and make better business decisions by providing visibility into the financial health of their portfolios.

In this comprehensive Stessa review, I'll cover the key features and benefits of using Stessa, how it compares to other property management solutions, and the best use cases for the software. I will also cover the pricing options, a step-by-step setup guide, and insight into whether Stessa is the right choice for your rental property accounting and management needs.

Ultimate Stessa Review: 10 Best Rental Property Manager Apps
real estate investment software

Discover the best rental property manager with our Ultimate Stessa review. Compare features, versus top 10 competitors including QuickBooks, Baselane and Avail.

Price: 0 – 20

Price Currency: $

Application Category: Accounting and Portfolio Management

Editor's Rating:
4.84

Pros

  • Free basic plan with unlimited properties and reports
  • Easy to set up and user-friendly interface
  • Automates expense and income tracking from linked accounts
  • Provides various financial reports and metrics on property performance
  • Secure platform with bank-grade encryption
  • Many Integrations including QuickBooks, AppFolio, Propertyware, RentPrep
  • Automated Rent Collection, Landlord Banking, Tenant Screening

Cons

  • Mostly focused on accounting, less on operations
  • Limited feature set compared to full property management software
Stessa Video Tours: Intro to Stessa

Seamlessly track and manage your rental property finances with Stessa's free cloud-based software platform.

Benefits Of Using Stessa

Simplified Accounting

One of the most significant advantages of Stessa is that it simplifies rental property accounting. The software automatically categorizes your income and expenses, making tracking your net operating income easy. Stessa also generates financial reports and performance metrics explicitly tailored for rental properties, such as Schedule E tax forms. This eliminates the need for spreadsheets or manual data entry. This rental property accounting software lets you quickly optimize returns across unlimited properties.

Income and Expense Tracking

Stessa enables automated tracking of all your rental property income and expenses. You can upload receipts and invoices, which get categorized and logged automatically. The software also integrates with bank and credit card accounts to import and categorize transactions. This makes it easy to monitor expenses and cash flow across your portfolio. It's a great way to keep yourself free from credit-related issues. If you are entrepreneurial and want to start a credit repair business, read our article.

Tax-Ready Financial Reporting

Stessa can generate all the reports you need to file taxes for your rental properties at tax time. This includes Schedule E, depreciation reports, and profit and loss statements. Stessa takes the guesswork out of preparing your rental property taxes. One of the most important capabilities is that it organizes expenses into IRS categories and exports tax-ready reports to simplify filing taxes on rental properties.

Portfolio Performance Monitoring

Stessa offers at-a-glance visualization of your overall rental property portfolio performance and financial health. Metrics like cash flow, appreciation, and equity are tracked over time. This high-level view makes it easy to identify underperforming properties. It gives rental property investors an online dashboard to monitor performance metrics like cash flow and ROI across their entire portfolio.

Mobile Access

With Stessa's mobile apps for iOS and Android, landlords can access their portfolio information and manage expenses on the go. You can upload receipts, record mileage, and view reports from anywhere. The best part is that this free landlord accounting software links bank accounts to categorize transactions and generate tax-ready reports.

Stessa rental property accounting software setup process in 3 steps.
The 3-step setup process for Stessa rental property accounting software. We liked that it can generate over 20 financial reports to analyze the performance of real estate investments from different perspectives. For those just starting out or on a limited budget, it provides landlords with free tools to track rental income and expenses, collect rent online, and monitor cash flow.

Boosting Your Returns with Stessa

If you are like most investors, you will love the new cash management options. This set of features solves real problems for real estate investors. The Stessa cash management account provides several unique features to help real estate investors maximize returns. Below, we have included our thoughts and analysis on the best ways to boost your returns.

This data is verified on the Stessa site as of December 9, 2023. Upgrading to the Pro account at $20 monthly offers the highest interest rate at 5.09% APY versus 3.14% for the free Essentials plan. Strategically utilizing sub-accounts lets you organize income and expenses by property. For example, if you break each property into a separate LLC, having individual income and expenses is essential. The 1.0% rate currently offered by the cash-back debit card rewards also increases your overall yield.

Working with a financial advisor to explore options for investing excess cash for potentially more significant gains is wise. An accountant can advise on tax implications to keep more of what you earn. These are specialized tips we apply ourselves to get the most from Stessa.

While accounts are not FDIC insured, funds are currently held at Blue Ridge Bank. So there is some protection. Also, Stessa focuses more on accounting over property operations. But the Pro plan unlocks essential features that can drive significant returns, making the monthly fee well worth it.

Key Takeaway: Stessa provides tailored tools to boost yields through higher interest rates, sub-accounts, debit card cash back, and integration with financial advisors and tax strategists. The platform is designed specifically to help real estate investors maximize returns.

stessa alternatives: How Does It Compare?

Stessa vs. Quickbooks

The main differences are that Stessa is purpose-built, accessible, and automated for tracking rental property finances specifically. In contrast, QuickBooks provides more customizable but complex accounting software designed for general small business needs, not specialized for real estate investors.

  • Free to use with unlimited properties, while QuickBooks has monthly fees
  • Integrates seamlessly with property management platforms like AppFolio
  • Helps maximize rental property returns through better financial visibility
  • Specialized support from the Stessa team focused solely on rental owners

Stessa vs. Avail

The main difference is that Stessa focuses on finance and analysis while Avail provides end-to-end property management. Stessa has unlimited free plans, while Avail starts at $5 per month per property. For investors looking to optimize returns, Stessa's accounting tools are precious. Avail helps landlords handle leasing, maintenance, and communication. Using both together can provide a complete solution for independent landlords.

  • Free, robust accounting and reporting
  • Automatic bank and credit card transaction imports
  • Integrates with Roofstock rental listings

Stessa vs. Cozy

Stessa offers free financial tracking and reporting, while Cozy provides a complete property management suite. Stessa integrates with Cozy, so investors get accounting insights plus robust rental tools.

  • Stessa focuses on financial analytics rather than broad property management
  • Stessa integrates with Cozy to combine accounting and property management
  • Stessa provides personalized recommendations to maximize returns

Stessa vs. Rentredi

The main difference is that Stessa specializes in accounting, analysis, and optimizing returns, while RentRedi offers a full-service property management platform.

  • More advanced analytics and reporting
  • Higher interest rates on checking accounts
  • Additional features like document eSigning

Stessa vs. Baselane

Stessa offers more robust financial tracking and analysis tools, while Baselane provides better property management capabilities. Both platforms streamline rental property accounting.

  • Free, robust accounting and reporting
  • Automatic bank and credit card transaction imports
  • Integrates with Roofstock rental listings

Stessa vs. DoorLoop

Stessa is ideal for individual real estate investors who want accessible, automated accounting and financial oversight of their properties. DoorLoop provides a more end-to-end solution for active property management and its accounting features, making it better suited for professional property managers or landlords with more units.

  • Best for individual landlords with smaller portfolios to track finances
  • Free basic plan with unlimited properties
  • Focuses primarily on financial tracking and reporting

Stessa vs. PayProp

While PayProp offers an all-in-one property management solution with features like maintenance coordination and rent collection, Stessa provides more specialized tools for real estate investors to efficiently track finances and optimize returns across their growing rental portfolios.

  • Better suited for investors looking to scale their rental property portfolios
  • Larger landlord community forum for networking and knowledge sharing
  • More accounting features like automated expense tracking and reporting

Stessa vs. Innago

Stessa outperforms Innago for residential real estate investors needing advanced analytics to maximize returns across rental properties. In contrast, Innago better suits commercial property managers who list vacancies and communicate with tenants.

  • Robust financial tracking and reporting
  • Property performance metrics and benchmarking
  • Streamlined tax preparation and Portfolio optimization tools

Stessa vs. Rent Manager

Stessa focuses strictly on financial tracking and analysis for property investments, while Rent Manager is full-service property management software.

  • Stessa offers unlimited free tracking, while Rent Manager has monthly fees
  • Stessa provides personalized analytics to maximize returns, unlike Rent Manager
  • Stessa has a mobile app for on-the-go access, which Rent Manager lacks

Stessa vs. SimplifyEm

Stessa is free, unlimited software with advanced analytics, while SimplifyEm charges subscriptions starting at $25/month but has basic property management features.

  • Stessa offers more robust analytics and reporting to optimize rental pricing
  • Stessa seamlessly has more integrations with popular software like QuickBooks
  • Stessa provides a more intuitive and easy-to-use interface
Stessa software - Property portfolio overview with financial metrics and comparison properties.
Stessa Real Estate investment software provides a comprehensive overview of your property portfolio. The solution helps investors maximize returns by automating accounting and providing key property financial analytics. While not a complete property management solution, Stessa handles essential accounting tasks like financial reporting and rent collection.

Best Use Cases for Stessa

Individual Landlords

Stessa is an excellent fit for individual investors managing their own small portfolio of rental properties. The expense tracking, reporting, and portfolio monitoring make Stessa ideal for hands-on landlords. Many small landlords will use tenant screening solutions like RentPrep to perform background checks on rental applicants.

Real Estate Investors

Investors with more extensive rental property portfolios will benefit from Stessa's ability to roll up reporting across multiple properties. This provides an invaluable high-level view of cash flow and returns.

Passive Owners

Owners who take a more hands-off approach will appreciate Stessa's automated expense tracking and reporting. This eliminates the need to collect and organize rental property expenses and data.

Out-of-State Owners

For owners who don't live near their rental properties, Stessa provides much-needed visibility into how their properties perform financially. The mobile apps also make it easy to manage expenses remotely.

While Stessa gives rental property owners core accounting tools to track income and expenses, it does lack maintenance requests and tenant communication capabilities.

Stessa Pricing

How much does stessa cost?

Stessa Essentials (Free)

The Essentials plan is free and allows owners to add unlimited properties, connect bank accounts, track income and expenses, and access basic reporting. However, integrations are more limited, and it offers only basic reporting.

Stessa Pro ($20/month)

Stessa Pro offers advanced reporting, custom tags and classifications, automated receipts and mileage tracking, advanced integrations, API access, Accelerated rent payments, and a higher-yield cash management account.

Stessa landlord accounting software - property portfolio overview with financial metrics displayed.
A sample property in the portfolio showcasing financial metrics in Stessa landlord accounting software. Stessa offers an invaluable solution for landlords and real estate investors to simplify accounting, maximize returns, and gain financial clarity in their rental properties.

Step-By-Step Setup Guide

  1. Sign up for a free Stessa login.
  2. Connect your financial accounts like bank and credit card accounts. Stessa will automatically import your transaction history.
  3. Add your rental properties to Stessa, including address, number of units, purchase date, etc.
  4. Classify your imported historical transactions using Stessa's preset rental property income and expense categories.
  5. Customize your account by setting up units, adding users, configuring automated imports, and enabling mobile apps.
  6. Review and configure your portfolio, performance, and financial reports.

Once the initial setup is complete, Stessa will automatically track and categorize all future transactions, making rental property accounting and management a breeze.

Is Stessa Right for You?

Stessa is best suited for hands-on real estate investors and landlords who want an automated solution to simplify their rental property accounting and maximize portfolio returns.

It's an affordable and user-friendly option for individual investors or small family-owned portfolios. Stessa eliminates the hassle of spreadsheets and manual processes. It eliminates manual work by pulling transactions from linked accounts and auto-categorizing them for rental property bookkeeping.

However, more prominent institutional investors may want a more robust real estate management platform with maintenance coordination and leasing management features. Stessa also lacks direct rent collection capabilities and tenant screening tools.

For most individual rental property owners, Stessa provides the perfect blend of easy-to-use tools for tracking income, expenses, and portfolio performance. The mobile apps, automated reporting, and free plan make it accessible for landlords of all experience levels.

According to Brookings, The U.S. rental housing market is large and diverse, serving 44 million households in all parts of the country.

Stessa Review Conclusion

When I tested Stessa, I found the automated transaction tracking especially useful for simplifying rental property accounting. Connecting bank accounts automatically pulls in and categorizes income and expenses, saving me monthly hours. Based on the detailed financial reports and tax-ready exports it generates, I highly recommend Stessa to any landlord looking to improve visibility into property finances.

The software eliminates the need for spreadsheets and manual processes by automating expense tracking, reporting, and portfolio monitoring. In an intuitive real estate-centric platform, Stessa provides an end-to-end view of property financials. While it lacks some property management features, Stessa excels at its core purpose – making rental property accounting and optimization accessible for owners of all sizes and experience levels. And with plans starting at free, it's easy to try out.

If you want to take your real estate investments to the next level, Stessa is worth exploring. The platform will save you time, effort, and headaches during tax season. Sign up for a free account today and see how Stessa can help you maximize returns on your property portfolio.

Stessa FAQ

Is Stessa actually free?

Yes, Stessa offers a robust free version called Stessa Essentials that includes core tools for rental property owners like unlimited properties and bank connections, full transaction data export, and basic reporting. However, more advanced features like automated workflows, detailed analytics, and document eSigning require upgrading to the paid Stessa Pro plan, which starts at $16 per month when billed yearly. So, while the software is technically free, unlocking specific capabilities has a cost.

Does Stessa require a fee?

Stessa's basic Essentials plan is entirely free with no hidden fees. You can add unlimited properties, connect bank accounts, run reports, and export data. Upgrading to the Pro plan unlocks more advanced features like automated bank feeds, receipt scanning, and custom reports. Pro plans start at $20/month paid monthly or $16/month if billed annually. Stessa also offers free ACH rent payment processing for owners through Stessa Rent Pay. The only potential fees are if you choose paid extras like credit checks or make wire transfers from your Cash Management account. But the core Stessa software itself remains free.

Is Stessa able to collect rent?

Yes, Stessa offers an online rent collection feature called Stessa Rent Pay. It allows landlords to collect rent via ACH with no fees. Tenants receive email invites to connect bank accounts and set up automatic payments. Funds are typically available in landlords' Stessa Cash Management accounts within 2-3 business days. So Stessa provides an easy way for rental property owners to collect rent digitally and eliminate manual tasks.

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