E - Newsletter
Property Management Solutions since 1978

Volume III,  Number 2
Published occasionally by FullHouse Software, Inc.
July 15 , 2009
5415 Lake Howell Road, Suite 207
Winter Park, FL 32792

It's finally come! We've waffled,  done both prereleases and rolling releases  and really put IPM 10 through its paces. Now the time has come.  The release of IPM 10 sets the course for FullHouse Software for the next decade.

That's the focus of this newsletter.  We're delighted to announce this milestone and all the changes that go with it - like the new website.  Moreover, FullHouse Software begins its fourth year of operation July 1 - so what better way to celebrate than reinventing...almost everything? 

Bugs & the IPM 10 Updater
Shortly after we released IPM 2007, one of our customers discovered than an enhancement in one function made a function she used regularly fail. She exclaimed in exasperation, "Why don't you fix this stuff before you release the software!"  Our president replied, "The same reason Microsoft released Vista with networking issues - it's impossible to test every permutation even with unlimited resources, and our resources are hardly unlimited. Instead, we try to make core functions rock-solid, then respond quickly to new issues."  And we had an update available within two days.

Despite two years of development and nearly nine months of testing, IPM 10 is new software, and we know there will be some new, ahem,  'challenges'. 

The good news is that there won't the persistent bugs like 'transient tenants' or printers that simply won't work.  The bad news is that we have no idea what the new issues will be. If you expect IPM 10 to be bug-free, or your blood pressure just can't take relearning your daily tasks, wait to switch to IPM 10. We're releasing it in August so that we have time to make your maximum-stress period at year end as effortless as possible. We won't wait to release updates, and we expect them to be frequent throughout the fall. 

We also know that some users just don't have the time (or inclination) to check our website for updates. We cringe when we see a user on a year-old update, too. So we've built an updater to automatically keep your installation current.

Here's how the updater works:  we post an update to our website. You start IPM 10.  If you have Automatic Updates turned on,  it'll check the website, validate your license,  close IPM 10, download the changes and restart IPM 10.  It's that simple!  

Of course, the automatic update process requires an internet connection, and will work only as long as your maintenance is current. This achieves one goal we've been aiming at for years: getting everyone on maintenance on the latest update, and keeping them current. Now it's effortless!


IPM 2007 Forever?
Relax! If you don't want to convert to IPM 10 right off the bat, you don't have to. Everyone currently on our Maintenance Plan will get IPM 10.0 when it's in full release at no cost, just as you get all our program updates

However, if you don't have internet access, or have an older computer, or just don't want to change, we want to serve you, too.  This presents a quandary for us; we want to provide everyone with the latest and greatest software possible, but we don't want to force our users into something they don't want.  

To that end, once IPM 10.0 is in full release, we will offer a "Legacy Maintenance Plan" for users of IPM 2007 to receive basic support - unlocks, "how to" questions and new installations.  Database services will be available at consulting rates for Legacy Plan members, and of course there won't be any more updates, but we'll keep you up and running as long as you still want to use IPM 2007.


The Next Generation of IPM Begins
August 31, 2009

The long-awaited date is finally approaching! FullHouse Software is pleased to announce that Investment Property Manager 10.0 will enter general release August 31, 2009.  

IPM 10IPM 10 is the culmination of more than two years of development and testing. It's a ground-up re-write based on IPM 2007, taking advantage of the latest tools and features but with the workflow and concepts that make IPM successful. 

IPM's data organization in databases containing checkbooks, containing properties, containing units, containing residents remains the same.  The toolbar in IPM 10 is familiar to any user of IPM 2007.  A simple import function allows you to use all your IPM 2007 data in IPM 10 and gain all the advantages of the new database structure effortlessly. 

Enhancements are too numerous to list here, but include support for working on multiple screens at once, long file names, enhanced ticklers, tool tips throughout, automatic updates, separate definition for check and report printers (that you can change from the report!) and even support for remote offices.

There's more information on every screen in a consistent, intuitive format.  IPM 10 has half the screens of IPM 2007, so navigation is faster. Every task has been streamlined, from dropdowns for account numbers to effortless posting and monthly charges. And of course, gone are the 'end of month close' and the even less popular 'end of year close': IPM 10 compiles all totals based on date, so these functions are unnecessary. 

While we've had one eye on our existing users, we also recognize that IPM 2007 hasn't been as easy to learn for new users as we'd like.  IPM 10 is more consistent with the Windows standard, so if you've used almost any other Windows application, you already know most of the interface. This makes it easier for new users, and helps seasoned IPM users train their support staff.

IPM 10 does not overwrite IPM 2007 or earlier installations, so you can have both programs installed on the same machine. We recommend that you install IPM 10 at least a month before you want to go live with it: this is a new generation, not just a new version.  We're offering a free Webinar to get you ready for the transition, and have a 'making the transition' guide just to reduce your stress.

Visit our IPM 10 page for more information, here.

Preview Our New Website
The first thing we did when Realty Automation became FullHouse Software in September, 2006, was update the website.  That's our storefront and our window on the world. However, our current website betrays the ambiguity we had when we started FullHouse: we really didn't know who would be looking. Should we target new customers? Long-time users? Both? We chose the latter option and threw everything against the wall to see what stuck.

Now we have a better idea, and a lot more to offer. Our existing customers hit the updates, remote live support, and our email address.  Potential customers seem to appreciate our candid comparisons with other products, the ROI calculator, and the industry-specific pages we added for people new to the industry as well as new to IPM.  We didn't give potential customers a very easy path to learn about IPM or buy it.  And we certainly don't want to bother our existing customers with the sales stuff.

We believe you'll find the new website crisper and better organized. And Remote Live Support is in the top right corner. Take a look here - we think you'll like it!

New Horizons?
After IPM 10's in general release and the new website's live, what's in store for IPM and FullHouse Software?  The obvious answers include 'updates', 'a vacation', or at least  'a weekend off'.  But the real answers include IPM Enterprise Edition for our larger customers, and new features coming out our ears.  We'll be using the 'tips' screen in IPM 10 to query our users about what they want.  Some ideas kicking around include, online chat between IPM users, an integrated Web browser, a 'favorite reports' tool to streamline monthly printing,  and literally dozens more. IPM 10 is designed for change, and we want to live up to that potential.

FREE Webinar:
 'Making the Transition'  August 18, 2009
2 PM Eastern

This webinar is designed specifically to help you move from IPM 2007 to IPM 10. 

It will cover the nuts and bolts of importing your data, navigating screens, and doing all the things you do on a monthly basis. It will  focus on the basic monthly cycle in IPM 10, from charging residents to receiving payment to writing checks to printing reports. 

It will be recorded and available on our website after the original presentation. 

It will NOT go into detail on every screen or function. We're providing a transition guide,  and computer-based training courses  for that.

The course will be 45 minutes, starting at 2 pm on Tuesday, August 18, 2009. Space is limited, so email sales@fullhousesoftware.com to reserve your spot now!  

Yet one more reason why our maintenance plan is a great value!

Are You (and your Data)  
Ready for IPM 10?

Our design philosophy is founded on being just behind cutting edge, and definitely back from bleeding edge.  If you jumped on Vista, traded your SUV for a Prius and change phones as often as you change shoes, we know you've already got IPM 10 installed and have been playing with it.  

If you're like me, and have a phone that resides in the glove box of my 10-year-old Volvo,  and haven't had any problems with IPM 2007 there's nothing pushing you to change...right now. 

When you are ready to move, you need to make your data ready for IPM 10. If you have any tenant ledgers that don't match your charge/due screen, start working on them! IPM 10 relies on the tenant ledger, so get 'em right before you switch.  Anything else you've been putting off - trials out of balance, unposted items, et.c - need to be cleaned up first.

We're a small company, and know that we'll have our hands full after the general release, so we certainly don't mind you waiting a while to change over.  (Our automatic updates should reduce the pain from the bleeding-edge people, by making sure any fix is disseminated immediately).  We know we'll find more than a few 'gotchas' once hundreds of users pound on it daily. 

We're working hard to make the transition as easy as possible, and hope you do your part, too.

What's IPM 10? 
If this is the first you've heard about IPM 10, there's a webinar you can watch to get clued in. The webinar IPM 10 Webintroduced IPM 10 and starting the prerelease program. It covered the major screens and highlighted some of the new features.  You can view it on the IPM 10 page, or click here.  

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