Whenever possible, property management companies and their managers strive to invest a major part of their resources in their greatest strengths, namely, for example, in showing rental apartments with direct customer contact (yes, with certain distance…). In other words, administrative work in the office, such as collecting and processing the numerous incoming application documents for rental apartments, is usually not one of their favorite tasks, but nevertheless simply one of the unavoidable ones. Wrong. The future of processing application documents for rental apartments is automated and thus looks much rosier as far as manual and tedious work is concerned.

Moving away from manual to automated processing – a first big step, but by no means all the highlights that intelligent, AI-based OCR has to offer

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Numerous application documents to be evaluated

As with any application, the real estate management firm wants to know as precisely as possible what kind of tenant it is dealing with, so that it can finally decide not only for one among the many but for the right one and give the promise of the rental apartment. For this purpose, real estate managers will use the data from the following application forms:

  • Application form: Correctly and completely filled out, including reference data and contact of the previous landlord
  • Current excerpt from the debt collection register: So that the real estate management firm can be sure that the applicant has no debt collection cases
  • Copy of ID or passport
  • Personal letter (not mandatory)

From the information provided in these application documents, the real estate management firm has to figure it out. This is where the tedious work begins. Depending on the location and popularity of a rental property, hundreds of application dossiers come in quickly, which then have to be evaluated and compared. As already mentioned at the beginning, this is not only a massive administrative effort, but also not the preferred work of real estate managers. They usually much prefer to be out and about, interacting with the various applicants and showing them the apartments, communicating with tradesmen, and so on and so forth.

The integration of intelligent, AI-based OCR – so that in the future the focus can be put back on the really important things, like interacting directly with the promising rental applicants

The automatic processing of application documents

It is precisely for these reasons that the weaning of the manual processing of application dossiers is sought. Of course, this requires a method that also behaves and may process the numerous application dossiers of prospective tenants in a time that trumps the manual one by quite a bit. Intelligent, AI-based OCR (Optical Character Recognition) does both. And not only that, it does much more. But one thing at a time. The individual automated process steps with intelligent, AI-based OCR look like this:

  • Application materials are received by the property management firm, in hard copy and handwritten, electronically via email or via a website, and are automatically captured
  • The documents undergo a quality improvement, the pages are separated from each other
  • Application documents are automatically classified according to the application form, debt collection register extract, ID/passport, and, if applicable, personal letter
  • Intelligent, AI-based OCR now automatically extracts all relevant data from the application documents
  • Back and ready for the next process steps, the structured data remains in 1A quality

But what if the application documents are incomplete? Until today, this actually meant that the applicant’s documents ended up in the shredder. Until today

Automatic e-mail in case of incompleteness of application documents

Have incomplete documents been sent in? That can happen, after all, people still sit behind the completion of their application documents. What used to mean certain elimination from the application process no longer has to be the case today. We are talking about an automatic e-mail to the apartment applicant. If any information in the form is incomplete, for example, “how long have you been a tenant in your current apartment?” has not been filled in, or if the debt collection register extract is not up to date, a notice will automatically appear after data extraction by intelligent, AI-based OCR. Also automated, an e-mail is now sent to the apartment applicant with a request to submit the missing data or documents.

Without the real estate management having to lift a finger, a fully automated e-mail is sent to the applicant

Benefits through and through with intelligent, AI-based OCR

So with the automatic processing of rental property application documents based on intelligent, AI-based OCR, in addition to the obvious benefits such as the elimination of manual and tedious data entry and processing, there are other major benefits. The automatic generation and sending of e-mails based on the previously automatically extracted data or the intelligent recognition of missing data is crucial for real estate management companies and their optimized workflows.