Pro features that used to be free

It is frustrating that the new “pro” (paid) tier takes away features that used to be free. I would be far happier to upgrade to pro if newer features were added and nothing was removed from the free tier.

As it is now I am looking at options to leave Stessa all together.

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@justin6 I’m in a similar position. As best I can tell, the only added feature is the Schedule E report (and increased interest rate if you use cash management).

@devin are there plans to add features for Stessa Pro users?

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Same! I don’t use half of the stuff in the paid version. Just the receipt upload, so now I have to pay monthly for that? Interested in other options also. I would be glad to pay for new features as well.

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Yes absolutely. There are indeed plans to further develop the suite of exclusive Pro features. This will be a primary focus going forward. We of course do not expect that all Pro customers will necessarily need or desire every single Pro feature. The idea is that the bundle as a whole makes sense for a broad audience of rental property owners and represents a solid ROI by saving countless hours of your valuable time throughout the year.

Key Pro features associated with this initial launch include:

  • Unlimited custom portfolios
  • Pro-forma analysis
  • 4.3% APY banking*
  • Advanced reporting and taxes
  • Accelerated rent payments
  • Unlimited smart receipt scans

The Schedule E report and accelerated rent payments are net new features launching today. Some advanced reports (Balance Sheet) were introduced as free beta features on a limited-time basis in the past. Those advanced reporting features are now part of the Pro package.

In sum, we feel the Pro option offers great value even for those investors who don’t plan to take advantage of each and every Pro feature. For example, at the current 4.3% APY, maintaining a cash management balance of only $5,000 for a year will more than cover the cost of a Stessa Pro annual subscription. Hope that helps!

*Stessa is a financial technology company, not a bank. Banking services provided by Blue Ridge Bank, N.A., Member FDIC. The Stessa Cash Management Visa® Debit Card is issued by Blue Ridge Bank, N.A., pursuant to a license from Visa U.S.A. Inc., and may be used everywhere Visa debit cards are accepted. Annual Percentage Yield (APY) of 4.3% for the Stessa Pro tier is accurate as of January 24, 2023. No minimum balance or opening deposit required. Fees could reduce earnings on the account.

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While it is frustrating that free things are now part of the Pro package, companies change how they monetize things all the time. What I find most frustrating is the lack of warning and communication to the users who have been using it for awhile. It’s not good customer service to just change things without warning or to allow a transition period for current users to understand the new options and whether its worth an upgrade. Food for thought: would have been nice to give current users a period of time to use the new features with a 30 day warning of the transition. Then it would not feel like things are changing with no warning and more likely to get people to upgrade.

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I was under the impression that the ads for roofstock properties and obie insurance along with data about fiances (for data mining) were covering the underlying cost of the service.

I logged in in the morning and everything was well only to log in the afternoon and the features I utilize being set behind a paywall. I didnt even get an email saying the features were going live till later at 7:11p.

Poor handling all around. I accepted inconsistent syncing and long deposit times becasue I felt a basic ledger system would be a fair trade. The economics just dont make sense any longer.

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I’m all for paying for a tool I use extensively and am excited to see new features. I do wish that there was a bill pay feature to the cash management part - I wish it wasn’t needed but that’s the only way some banks/vendors will take payment. I agree with a bit of a trial, I signed up for the monthly just to ‘try’ it out.

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Are Cash Management accounts going to be at 4.3% for a year?

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Me too. Same exact reaction. I noticed all the missing features that used to be Free making Stessa a lot less useful to me. I downloaded all of my Stessa Transactions so somehow that could not be blocked also and now I will be evaluating alternatives to Stessa.

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I see a bunch of free features were put behind the paywall. I’ve really lost confidence in the platform, especially with the free tier “rug pull” that just happened along with the constant issues of account disconnects. I would love to point at the request tab for numerous ways to make the “Pro” version worth it.

I would pay to have: Better account connection integration, automated bank transfers, automated bill pay, tenant facing app, transfer limit lifts, ATM deposits, a 24/7 phone support number, etc.

It’s not even close to worth the .5% interest rate boost for me.

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Terrible missteps, you guys take away balance sheet report away from free tiers? Come on, that’s not cool. And you still did not fix importing problems that have been ongoing for a long time.

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Hooray, good timing, rug pull during tax season!!

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I also am frustrated with these changes. It is one thing to make a decision to create a new paid tier of membership - it is, after all, a business. I don’t think anyone is bothered by the need for you guys to make a profit.

It is, however, quite another thing to create a new paid tier, move previously free features into the paid tier, and do all of this with no advance warning.

A more customer-friendly approach would have been to give at least 3-6 months advance notice, with a longer transition period during which all previous features were made available to both free and paid tier memberships. New features introduced at launch time for paid-tier, with a clear timeline for transition of previously free features to paid-tier only.

The removal of pro-forma analysis and the balance sheet report from the free-tier was particularly glaring, in my opinion.

As others have stated, I would considering paying for a paid-tier that had clear value-added features, but not one which merely restores basic features that were removed from a now-crippled free tier. The increased in interest rate, custom portfolios, and accelerated rent payments, along with some of the advanced reports are reasonable features to have in a paid-tier, but I hope that Stessa will strongly consider restoring some of the other features back to the free tier in a gesture of good will.

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While companies routinely change pricing, it’s rare to take away features from existing clients unless it was a previously known “freemium” model or free trial period. The fact that Stessa chose to roll out features to it’s existing users and then change to a paid subscription for those features in the new year is awful.

I had already been using several features that were switched over to “pro” and now my tracking methods will be messed up unless I upgrade.

Stessa was looking like a great service and was slowly adding things that were going to have me switching away from alternatives like RentRedi, Avail or Hemlane. Unfortunately, if you can’t trust the company to be loyal to its existing customers or transparent about its actions then it makes little sense to build your business with them.

I will give Stessa a few weeks to see if there is enough fall out from this bone headed move to reverse some of it for their current customer base, but after that I will be moving on and continuing to other services.

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Devin,

Are you able to shed light on the future roadmap of the Pro option? Coming from Quickbooks where I was paying four times the cost, Stessa Pro is a great value provided the suite of services in continually updated. In particulare, there is a tremendous need for bill pay within Cash Management. Is this on the horizon? Thanks.

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Very disappointing. I knew Stessa would monetize at some point but $20 per month is excessive for small investors. Features that I have relied on are now behind a pay wall. The free version is not going to cut it–even for small investors. Now I am in the awkward position of looking for a new bookkeeping solution. I have used Wave Accounting in the past. It’s free and works well, but its not customized for real estate.

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Making something “Pro” when it was free to begin with is a horrible way to do business. And timing this with tax season is a way to handcuff your loyal customers.

“Pro” added 1 new feature while making existing free features now a paid feature. $20/month is also a bit much when all of my data is available and can be marketed for.

The insurance quotes were not even close to market comparisons and the “Pro” paid program with no future roadmap released, warning, or added value shows that there is a lack of leadership and customer service.

My last customer service communication around accounts not synching to one of the largest banks in the USA… I was told that I could reach out to my bank and have them switch their connection… or I could go with Stessa’s checking accounts for integration. Why would I pay for a service when I allow for my data to be mined + store my money?

Things that would satisfy me:

  1. Release a roadmap for what Pro is actually going to add
  2. Fix banking connections
  3. Find vendors that can actually compete with markets (insurance, mortgages)
  4. HELOCs
  5. Portfolio loans
  6. Option that if I pay, my data cannot be sold
  7. Make this a full service property and portfolio management tool

Not all would need to be satisfied, but anything is more than what’s been communicated.

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Add me to the list of upset customers. I think everyone here has good points. I was actually expecting you guys to monetize this at some point, but right now I can’t even set an expense transaction to my Portfolio, I have to choose an individual property. This seems pretty basic and I was surprised to see that this now requires a Pro license. I guess I can create a fake property and assign those expense to that, but it seems like a messy work around…

I agree that it would have been much better to get some kind of heads up for existing users. It wouldn’t have been necessary if you were just adding new features that were now being charged for, but taking away previous features for existing users just doesn’t feel great. Even if you set it up the way you have it for NEW users would have been fine. But you took away stuff from those of us who depend on this software to run our business. I do not have a large portfolio and haven’t been doing this for too long, so I don’t have a lot of extra time or money to quickly figure out an alternative.

I feel like no one thought of the users when these decisions were made. I hope management can see this conversation and reconsider these decisions.

I sincerely appreciate your time and consideration.

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Perhaps it would have been a better approach to bundle those new features into the improved Pro platform, rather than to deprecate features from the current platform?

The lack of communication is also disconcerting. I was literally using some of the legacy reports the day before and lost them while working on a project with someone. Truly frustrating.

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Agree with the masses here, AT TAX TIME? Can something be done to allow us to get portfolio level tax reports and then charge? This really adds to tax time frustrations - I’ve been declining my accountants suggestion to change for years - may be the tipping point.

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