Successfully growing a real estate business means working smarter by automating as much as possible to free up time for money-making activities. If you’re a regular reader of our blog, you probably already know that Stessa Documents lets you organize all of your real estate files online. An excellent complement to this is Google Drive.
Today, let’s take a look at Google Drive. It’s one of the most powerful tools for managing your business and diversifying your rental property portfolio. Best of all, Google Drive is absolutely free.
What is Google Drive?
Think of Google Drive as your giant disk drive in the sky.
Google Drive is a cloud-based service that allows real estate investors to create, store, and organize things like documents and spreadsheets that are typically found on a computer.
Drive operates on the Google Cloud Platform, a private, software-defined network that provides fast and reliable connections to users in over 200 countries around the world.
Biggest benefits of Google Drive
Google Drive can be accessed with any browser or with a dedicated mobile app available for both Android and iOS. This functionality makes Drive the perfect companion for real estate investors working in the field.
Some of the biggest benefits of Google Drive for rental property owners include:
- Uploading and sharing documents within Drive or via text or another messaging service
- Downloading documents and accessing files offline when you’re without internet
- Adding multiple collaborators via a Google Group
- Share multiple files at once
- Convert documents created with other programs into Google Drive
- Revert to an older version of the document
- Integrate apps into Drive to make diagrams, edit photos, build 3D models, make sketches, and more
How Google Drive helps systemize your business
Rental property investors are often pleasantly surprised to find that such a large portion of their real estate business can be automated and systemized. This lets property owners spend more time doing deals and scaling up while routine tasks are completed behind the scenes.
In a nutshell, Google Drive stores files, documents, and images online that can be accessed from multiple devices. Files can be accessed from anywhere, synced across multiple devices, and shared directly from Google Drive or via email.
Google Drive also integrates with other Google G Suite tools you’re probably already using today:
- Gmail lets you set up and receive emails from multiple accounts and save attachments directly to Google Drive
- Google Voice gives you a free local phone number in your choice of location to make and receive calls and text messages
- Google Calendar can be accessed from anywhere and you can easily attach items from Google Drive or create an event from Gmail
- Google Docs is integrated into Drive to create, view, and share documents, spreadsheets, and presentations
- Google Maps for searching for a street or address, showing a traditional road map, or navigating on your smartphone to arrive at your destination quickly and safely
Does Google Drive work with non-Google applications?
Google Drive is very third-party friendly, meaning that real estate investors don’t have to give up their favorite app or software to start using Drive in their business. Some of the applications property owners will find especially useful to use with Google Drive include:
- CloudConvert is a free file conversion tool with more than 200 different file formats for audio, video, documents, images, and presentations
- DocHub to make changes to PDF files
- PDF Merge is an easy way to combine PDF files
- DocuSign allows landlords and tenants to open a document, legally sign it, and re-save the executed version back to Google Drive
- Ultradox integrates with Google Drive or the Chrome browser to create contracts, invoices, PDF documents, and more
- LucidChart is an online diagram software and visual solution to sketch and share flowcharts, diagrams, and models
- Floorplanner is a free online editor for making and editing 2D blueprints and 3D interior images within minutes
Google Drive vs. Dropbox
Google Drive was ranked the best file storage solution in 2020. Here are some of the key differences between Drive and Dropbox:
- Storage: 15 GB free with options to increase storage to 30TB
- Access to Google programs like Docs and Gmail
- Shared storage space
- Slower syncing between devices
- Calendar sync with Google or Office 365
- G Suite program pays between $15 – $30 per referral
- Storage: 2 GB with options to increase storage to 3TB
- Access to Dropbox Paper
- Private storage space
- Block syncing makes changes faster and more reliable
- Calendar sync with Google or Office 365
- Referral program for additional storage space
10 Google Drive tips every investor should know
A growing number of real estate investors are opting for the safety, security, and convenience of online storage solutions like Google Drive. However, the benefits don’t stop there.
Here are 10 Google Drive tips that rental property investors should know:
- Backup and Sync program syncs across all devices and backs up files from computer, laptop, phone, camera, or SD cards
- Collaborate with up to 50 people simultaneously with easy-to-track version history
- Make a document public with search engine access or set access levels to control privacy
- Directly share docs via Gmail with an enormous 10 GB attachment allowance
- Google Drive mobile app for scanning and uploading an image with searchable text
- Translate foreign language documents into your preferred language
- Google Drive apps are entirely web-based applications that link to your Google Drive
- Quick browser bookmark bar creation links allow quick content creation for Google documents, sheets, slides, sites, and forms
- Google Drive supports offline file access with the Google Chrome extension
- Save to Google Drive Chrome extension makes it easy to save nearly everything you see online to a folder on Google Drive
Real estate investors who use Google Drive have access to documents and data 24/7 from anywhere in the world. Everything is stored safely and securely in the cloud, so there’s no need to worry about important information getting lost or misplaced.
Property owners who use Google Drive to systemize their business have more time to scale up and grow their rental property portfolios:
- Google Drive is a cloud-based service operating on the Google Cloud Platform
- Benefits of Google Drive include uploading, creating, storing and sharing documents online
- G Suite tools like Gmail, Voice, and Calendar easily integrate with Google Drive
- Drive is very friendly to third-party apps like DocuSign and Floorplanner
- Google Drive was ranked as the best file storage solution for 2020