Data Storage for Landlords and Property Owners
As a landlord and an owner of a small Atlanta property management company, I have to deal with many different responsibilities. One of them is making sure that our data is safe, backed up, easily available in case of an emergency, and most importantly easily accessible by our team. It is crucial for us to keep the data for our tenant, property owners, vendors and suppliers safe and secure.
To ensure that our data is secure, I have been mainly using one application, Dropbox, for years. I have paid for extended version history (a $39 per year upgrade), had the unlimited data account and generally was happy with my decision. A couple of months ago, all of our data got erased from Dropbox (accident on our part) however, I was under a full impression that my data was still there and safe in the Drobox’s’ servers. Surprise came when my (at this point pretty hysterical) emails began as I tried to restore my account from the servers. It was not as simple as I thought. To make a long story (as horrible as it was) short, we were without our data for 8 full days! It was nine years’ worth of our company data on those Dropbox servers and to go eight days without access to data was horrific.
As I was going through this horrid experience, I was thinking that one data (cloud) provider is definitely not enough to keep my data secure. I search and researched and have concluded that Google Drive and their set of business tools is a perfect solution for us. It gave us access to our data from multiple email addresses while keeping all the data in the same place, visible and usable by everyone in the office. The price for Google Drive and all the tools is extremely reasonable and so it was decided to move our data to Google Drive.
Another surprise came when Dropbox has restored our files, and instead of 300GB of data, it only restored 230GB! To move or copy even 230GB of data is no easy task when you are doing it in the cloud. We had to manually move each folder from Dropbox to Google Drive. With the amount of data we have, it took one person over 2 weeks to move the most critical data to Google Drive. At which point I realized that I cannot further dedicate my resources to manually move files. It’s too time consuming and not very practical. I called Google. Their tech support is amazing and I was speaking to one, very qualified tech in minutes. After explaining my plight, he suggested using an online app that is available in Google as an extension. There were several extensions to choose from and I downloaded them all. Just to give it a whirl. They are all free (have permanently free accounts) and of course, paid versions of their services. After trying them out for a couple of weeks, I have found the one!
CloudHQ. Can be found at www.cloudhq.net has been able to do the job of moving our files in less than 24 hours! And then I realized that it does so much more. I tried out the free version and then decided to go to the paid version which gave me unlimited space for moving files. It gave me the option of copying all my files from Dropbox to Google Drive. Loved it. I can also sync the files between Dropbox and Google Drive. CloudHQ can save my emails as pdf files (we need to keep copies for 7 years), they also have a chrome extension which enables Gmail users to share gmail labels, we can sync the copies of emails, there is so much productivity savings that we can do to utilize CloudHQ, I can’t even describe it all here in this short article.
We have survived the loss of data, bad service from DropBox, restoration of our files, acquiring another data storage source, we also bought an external drive (just in case), great service from Google, figured out a great and efficient way to move and copy files with CloudHQ, synchronize all the files between the different platforms and still keep our sanity. CloudHQ has saved the day!
As a landlord, you are a small business owner, and your data storage are as crucial to you as it is to me. I wanted to take this opportunity to share this story with you and let you know, should this happen to you, there are options out there that can make your life easier.
Marina Shlomov, a managing partner at ALH|Podland Realty & Rental Homes Property Management is the author of many articles on Landlording, Property Management, and Real Estate Investing. A residential builder in the state of Georgia since 1999, Marina is an investor herself. Her Atlanta property management company is intended “For Investors” and “By Investors” for a simple reason – she knows what investors’ goals are and she works hard to reach their goals. In her spare time, Marina likes to spend time with her family, friends, garden, read and travel. Check her out at www.alhpodland.com. You can find Marina’s articles and comments at @rentalhomesatl on Twitter, on Facebook, Google+, Blogger. and YouTube, Bigger Pockets and REI CLub and LinkedIn.