The real estate industry is a lucrative place to be for those who want to build their wealth. By 2025, the global real estate is projected to generate a revenue of $4,236.7 billion, based on Grand View Research. The increasing demands for housing, migration and enhanced income levels are some of the factors that are helping the market.
North America, Asia Pacific, and the Middle East are going to see substantial gains within seven years, driven by a large population and favorable government regulations, the report said. The rapid urbanization is influencing the demand for commercial, retail, industrial and healthcare infrastructure spaces, as well as urban home spaces with better amenities.
Along with these factors, technology is also driving the industry forward. In this highly digital era, the real estate sector has also been adopting various innovations. There are new tools and systems capable of making transactions a lot faster and more efficient. Technology has particularly transformed the process of home buying from reading newspaper ads to searching properties online first. Mobile phones have also provided a faster way for sellers and buyers to communicate.
The industry may have transformed considerably over the past decades, but technology continues to evolve. Here are some tech trends that are shaping the real estate industry this year:
Smart and automated home
Several technologies are making homes smart and automated today. There is a keyless code entry system that allows easy check-in and removes the worries about losing keys. A Forbes article notes this is particularly an interesting selling point for vacation properties.
Then there are green smart home ecosystems for the increasingly environment-conscious generation. Smart thermostats, video doorbells, and strong wireless network are also making it to residential properties. Their integration in homes provides energy efficiency, cost savings and added security.
Blockchain is one of the newest buzzwords in the business world. It is the underlying technology behind cryptocurrencies, which have seen astonishing growth in 2017. But its application goes beyond digital money, and many industries are already working on that, including real estate.
Blockchain is seen as a new foundational technology shaping the real estate business with its ability to provide more data security and transparency among real estate transactions. One of the first movers in adopting blockchain for real estate application is RESAAS Services Inc. (TSXV:RSS, OTCMKTS:RSASF).
RESAAS Services is a provider of cloud-based solutions for real estate professionals, including agents, brokerages, franchises and multiple listing services. One of its most successful products is the RealTimeMLS, an award-winning cloud platform that helps over 400,000 real estate professionals have real-time communication, transactions and sharing of data across the globe.
Understanding what the real estate businesses need, RESAAS has acquired Real-Block Inc., which has developed an Ethereum-based application that RESAAS is now integrating with its cloud platform. The immediate application of the technology to its services is an improved agent referral payment, automated through smart contract.
Blockchain can also be used to create a decentralized and secure database that will make it easier to validate agents’ licenses, qualifications, and identities.
Augmented and virtual reality
Today, prospective buyers can search for properties online through websites like Zillow. But soon, they can check the properties through augmented and virtual reality. With the success of Pokémon Go, the technologies of augmented and virtual reality are becoming a more viable consumer tech with a potential to reshape the real estate sector, per Inc.
VR Global, for instance, offers virtual presentations that allow sellers to showcase their properties anywhere using interactive 3D or 360-degree technology, virtual, augmented and mixed reality applications. AR and VR can be used as a meaningful sales tool, giving clients a fun and more convenient way of seeing a property before they see it in person.
As the world increases efforts to reduce greenhouse gases, one trend being considered by real estate developers is the use of microgrids. They are small-scale power grids decentralized from the main electricity network. They can cut electricity bills and boost one’s green credentials.
Schneider Electric last year unveiled a microgrid at its Boston One Campus. It uses solar power and aims to cut down costs and provide power resiliency. In India, ABB also installed a solar power microgrid at its manufacturing facility in Gujarat.
Another technology that is becoming more useful for the real estate industry is the drone. With this tool, agents can integrate photography and video tours in their listings. Drones can produce impressive and detailed shots that can capture the attention of potential buyers and increase the chances of making a sale.
Other than serving as a marketing tool, drones can also be used to survey roof leaks and other parts that need fixing, making them a great solution for landlords.
With these technologies, the real estate industry is looking at a great year this 2018. The processes of buying and selling properties, and even developing new homes, are going to be more efficient, secure and convenient.
Written by Anna Reyes
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