Technology is continuing to make waves in the world of business and property is no exception. Already this month, more than £45 million has been invested in property technology companies.
Online estate agent Yopa has raised £27.6 million from estate agent group LSL and DMGT, which owns the Daily Mail. Unlike most traditional agents, Yopa offers a fixed transaction fee instead of taking a certain percentage of the sale price. At the same time, digital mortgage broker Habito has announced it has raised £18.5 million. Habito uses cutting-edge technology and leading mortgage experts to help buyers get the best deal. The technology means they can analyse every mortgage on the market offered by more than 70 lenders within seconds. Habito said it had advised 50,000 people on mortgages worth more than half a billion since launching in April last year.
It is interesting to see that traditional estate agents such as LSL are investing in Yopa. Savills has also invested, according to Jefferies analysts who cover LSL, Anthony Codling and Sam Cullen. They say that traditional agents are doing well by investing in new technology. Good examples of this are Rightmove and Zoopla, which have really shaken up the market. About 18 months ago Zoopla said it would work with proptech companies to future-proof its own business.
The proptech world is only likely to get even more exciting as technology grows and is even being studied at top universities. Oxford University’s Said Business School has launched a course called the Oxford Fintech Programme. Within it, there is a module dedicated to proptech and real estate innovation. This will enable students to share ideas and explore innovative ideas in an online classroom, which could mean expensive mistakes are avoided. It is hoped the course will look at generating ideas rather than looking at case studies. It will be interesting to see how many estate agents sign up for the online course to help shape the future of their services.
Whilst people working in the property management business may feel threatened by proptech because it could make their roles redundant, it may be wise to embrace the changes. One way would be to analyse the technology and find out how it can complement or add value to your business model. Many of these innovations can help people to do their job more efficiently. At the end of the day, property is a people business. This means that face-to-face communication and trust are still, and will always be needed and respected. However, what proptech can do is take away time consuming administrative tasks and help to speed up other functions, enabling you to utilise your time and give more time to clients.
Take, for example, viewings. Traditional viewings where agents and landlords physically show potential tenants or buyers around properties is inefficient and time-consuming. That’s why virtual reality property tours are such a brilliant innovation. The agent or landlord can still be on hand to answer any questions and give information about the property. They can also conduct more virtual viewings in a day than they ever could if they had to wait for people to turn up to view the property. Therefore, they can potentially rent more properties faster and cheaper than before.
InventoryBase is one of the many products cropping up regularly to make property selling, renting, management, maintenance and development more automated and process-driven which in turn will make the market more efficient and more exciting at the same time.
Try InventoryBase today for free and book a demo with our team here.