As in many other industries, the Coronavirus crisis has highlighted the need for the real estate sector to digitalize. As consumer buying patterns change and more homebuyers are relying on digital tools to shop for new homes, the real estate firms that have already invested in technology to streamline their operations, fine-tune their user experiences, and create new ways to show properties and engage with clients in web and mobile formats are seeing an increase in pull-through rates.
The demand for digital selling tools in the real estate industry is rising dramatically, and will only increase as we head into 2021. Zillow, a home listing site, experienced a 191% increase in the creation of 3D home tours in March of 2020 compared with the average number created in February.
Within the same timeframe, the mortgage company, Redfin, experienced a 494% increase in requests for agent-led video, while the digital lockbox company, Rently, facilitated 197,964 self-tours—a 30% increase in demand from 2019.
Considering how significant these tools are becoming for real estate firms, we’ve compiled our top 5 digitalization technologies that we see transforming the industry in the next 12 months.
Keeping track of document filings, property data, CRM data, invoicing, expenses, sales tasks, sales content and social media activity can be a daunting proposition. Digitalization enables you to tailor your software to your business, reducing inefficiencies, duplication, and human error. Custom software can organize and reinforce best practices, taking the pain of repetitive tasks and allowing agents to focus on selling properties.
Also, automated software can reduce the frustration of buying and selling properties in other cities, states, or even countries by providing purchasing and lease agreements that can be validated by local laws in less time than manual methods allow.
Cloud computing technology can give real estate companies and agents the ability to store their files securely online and have it be accessible from all devices. Cloud solutions reduce costs by eliminating the need for independent servers and IT staff and increase productivity by boosting accessibility and sharing capabilities across multiple devices and platforms.
Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality
Immersive technologies, such as Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR), offer homebuyers the opportunity to tour the properties they are interested in without physically being there. High-quality 3D renderings provide a 360-degree tour of the property from customer’s phone anytime, increasing the chances that will find the exact property they want.
AI & ML Algorithms & Deep Learning
AI and ML can simplify the tasks associated with property valuations, estimating assets, and identifying relevant properties. Through deep learning, systems can be trained to assist with the tedious work of filtering tenants and determining rent.
In terms of market intelligence, Artificial Intelligence can help to analyze data and support effective decision making. AI algorithms are already being used to deliver insights into real estate market trends and improve areas of business.
Big Data Analytics can process a huge amount of data to help real estate managers predict future trends such as customer behavior, online habits, intent, past patterns, etc. This insight can be used to identify new leads and create more effective marketing campaigns.
While the coronavirus has lessened homebuyer demand in the short term, the buyers currently accessing digital real estate sales tools are more likely to buy properties, so the technology you use to reach them has to meet their expectations. Even in this challenging time, the real estate sector is moving ahead.
Would you like to more about how we can help you to reach homebuyers and gain an edge over your competitors? In our EndPoint Modeling workshops, we listen to your goals and walk you through the development process, delivering a full set of functional and non-functional specification documents: a detailed blueprint of the digital solution that fits your needs.
We guarantee that your product will meet all of your delivery criteria—including budget. For more information, please contact us, or leave a comment below.