PropTech is one of those new buzz words getting around the real estate scene increasingly more over the last decade. A portmanteau of property technology, it actually refers to the digital innovation of technologies used in processes related to searching, viewing, buying, selling, renting, and managing properties. Here’s how PropTech is changing the real estate game and reinventing the property market.
PropTech and Drones
It was only a few short years ago that aerial photography of properties was an extremely expensive option. Thanks to their ability to easily create budget-friendly digital videos and photos from multiple perspectives, drones have already had an effect on the property market. While they can be used for any size property in any location, they are most often used for large rural properties, grand scale mansions, or apartments in high rise buildings to provide potential buyers a better idea of their true size and positioning.
Drones are also quite useful when surveying property boundaries or for creating external plans and drawings of existing buildings, and they may also eventually be used to provide remote tours of properties for prospective buyers.
The technology isn’t quite there yet in the residential market- navigating a drone through such a small and enclosed space would be difficult. But the potential already exists for larger size spaces in the commercial and industrial sectors.
PropTech and Cloud Computing
The invisible backbone that has been supporting our online lives over the past few years, cloud technology has enabled the historically rigid real estate industry to become increasingly more flexible and mobile.
The rising popularity of cloud computing services over the internet (including server storage, networking software, databases, intelligence, and analytics) has helped to drive business and create lasting relationships within the property sector.
Cloud computing has provided a streamlined experience for stakeholders, as they are able to access extensive data regarding any project or property deal quickly and easily, no matter where they are in the world, as long as they have access to Wi-Fi or 4G Networks.
PropTech and 5G
The ongoing rollout of 5G is key to the planned and possible transformations of the real estate industry. That’s because it’ll provide massive amounts of extra bandwidth, allowing for an increasing number of smarter and faster online devices to connect to wireless internet.
The increased capacity of 5G will allow high-speed cameras to be installed around any property, which will not only provide added security for vacant homes but also allow for real-time property viewing thanks to the high definition images which can be transmitted instantaneously anywhere in the world.
PropTech and COVID-19
The social distancing and other restrictions on movement put in place for the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic have also had an impact on PropTech, just as it has with most other industries. The difference here though is that these restrictions have actually had a positive impact, as they have caused the real estate industry to accelerate their uptake and reliance on the digitization of properties.
Obviously, online property listings and real-time bookings in short-stay properties were already commonly done using online booking platforms long before the pandemic.
But these technologies, along with VR walkthroughs and online databases, have also recently been used to inspect properties, as well as make property sales, apply for rentals, take payments, submit loan applications, and even digitally sign contracts, all via secure gateways.
PropTech and the Future
Is the PropTech revolution here to stay? It is sure looking that way. But for PropTech to continue to thrive, real estate agencies around the world and here at home, all need to focus on identifying opportunities for PropTech innovation. Simply by incorporating the above digital PropTech solutions within their property processes, the real estate industry as a whole will view it as a necessity. In the end, PropTech is the future.
This article has been contributed by Luke Fitzpatrick.