Like most industries, the emergence of the internet and associated technological advancements have revolutionized the property sector and continue to do so. These days, a buyer can view a prospective property from thousands of miles away using drone technology, and purchase that property without even taking pen to paper. Here are some of the top emerging technologies altering the landscape of the property industry today.
As with a multitude of industries, virtual reality (VR) has the potential to significantly speed up real estate sales cycles. VR allows customers to experience a property instantaneously and puts agents in touch with potential buyers already further along in the buying process.
Up until now, agents have had to spend considerable time staging space and hosting viewings, but much of this could soon be a thing of the past. Not only are more and more agents utilizing 360-degree video, but some forward-thinking realtors are offering buyers 3D virtual tours of properties. Using 3D technology and drone footage, clients can virtually explore a property, experiencing everything from the scale of rooms, the head-heights of showers and the outside neighborhood feel before even setting foot at the address.
Blockchain enables companies to process major transactions without the need for involving intermediaries such as banks, credit card companies or governments.
If blockchain fulfils its real estate promise, it would bring security, efficiency and transparency to major transactions within the property sector. The two greatest impacts will be:
1. Smart contracts
Rather than going through a bank, with smart contracts, buyers can submit their information to a seller via an encrypted block, speeding up the transaction and reducing the chances of fraud.
In real estate, tokenization refers to using cryptocurrency to split assets and store them as tokens on the blockchain. This creates two big changes:
- Landlords can sell off a portion of their property and shares can be sold by investors on the open market via secondary exchanges
- Individuals previously ineligible can have access to opportunities for investment
Internet of things
Thanks to the internet of things (IoT), properties are growing infinitely smarter and with that, property management is becoming infinitely easier.
Everything from doors and light switches to security features can be accessed remotely, allowing for owners or property managers to monitor and control properties and their securities from afar. In addition to this, data can be gathered to understand and monitor information such as patterns of heating use or the most utilized spaces. A building’s temperature can be controlled remotely; reports can be sent out on utility interruptions site unseen. These advances are fast becoming expectations that those in the real estate industry are scrambling to keep up with.
After the events of 2019, remote work is on the rise more than ever, and the sharing economy is rising with it.
Since more and more people are choosing renting over buying goods and properties, a number of innovative businesses have entered the real estate industry to facilitate shared, mobile lifestyles:
- Companies like WeWork have focused on co-working spaces to enable businesses to operate without having to sign ten-year leases for office space
- Forward-thinking real estate companies like Zeus enable home owners to lease their spaces to businesses – and make extended stays in furnished homes available to businesses
- Monthly rental furniture from companies like CasaOne afford businesses and individuals the option to avoid buying furniture items at full price and reselling at a loss down the track
Need a ride? Hungry? These days, there’s an app for everything and people are on their phones more than ever.
When it comes to real estate, apps like Points2Homes and Zillow have created a centralized platform for both agents and clients to browse, buy or sell property, receive new listing notifications and find an agent. These platforms house data such as property values, mortgage information, listings and more.
The renovation space is being transformed by app use, too. With apps like Handy and Thumbtack, it's easier than ever to hire a painter, landscaper, cleaner, plumber, or any other professional contractor to attend your property and carry out work.
CRM and property management software
Customer relationship management (CRM) software like Salesforce, PipeDrive and many others help real estate agents stay on top of appointments, emails, calls and prospective sales progress. Similarly, property management software makes it much easier for agents to manage accounting, keep all the data and files stored securely in the cloud, and automate time-consuming tasks like rent collection.
Sometimes, it can seem like there are so many technological advances that it’s hard to keep up. The 21st-century world is undoubtedly changing and progressing at a rapid pace and to stay ahead of the game, we need to change with it.
Now more than ever, failure to recognize that many technologies are fast becoming integral to successfully performing within the real estate industry, will certainly result in missed opportunity.
Guest post courtesy of Denise Langenegger