Technology has and continues to be the biggest mover and shaker when it comes to advances across nearly all industries and it’s no different for real estate. Over the years, the way that people buy, sell, and rent property has become increasingly a digital platform and the trend continues with more and more real estate moving into the digital sphere. The shift to online and digital resources has given greater access to people and house hunters can now conduct searches of downtown Bangalore, India with the same ease as they would locally. Here’s where technology is making its mark in real estate.
Online Listings & Real Estate Searches
The move to online listings and searches has been the realm of both buyers and sellers, quickly becoming an indispensable tool for research, with 56 percent of buyers using it as their first step. There’s hundreds of sites on the web listing real estate and several startups working to become the go-to resource for house hunters and brokers looking to connect. These types of sites are allowing users to make customized searches, checking everything from subway lines to estate condition, and connecting brokers and buyers in less than ten minutes. While they are a valuable tool locally, these online search databases are absolutely vital to international real estate buyers and sellers.
Real Estate Apps
Smartphones and tablets have now broken into the real estate industry with a plethora of new property apps already on the market and more being launched every year. Many of the apps work in conjunction with online desktop counterparts while others are completely independent. Apps make house hunting even faster and easier, some even incorporating the phone’s GPS system to provide data for where the user is standing. There’s apps that give people the current market value of houses, whether they are for sale or not, useful statistics about areas, and trackers to help sellers know how many hits their property is getting.
Social media is also playing a part in real estate in the areas of brand promotion, agent interaction, and market distribution trends. For agents the social media websites provide an easy way to keep connected to clients and build online relationships to generate leads. Networks such as LinkedIn and Facebook help professionals get together and share information for properties, often with content marketing videos and photographs. House hunters can use social media to connect to Realtors and share housing information with friends and family in various regions at home and abroad.
According to Heather R. Huhman’s article on Business Insider, cloud technology is also starting to shape the real estate market in many ways. The cloud works predominantly through its intricate links with mobile tools and the apps used on them. It is the cloud that is paving the way for the lightning fast updates and real-time information to be available on houses, whether they’re in NYC or Bangalore. Cloud based services like Evernote and Dropbox are huge helpers for agents and consumers when it comes to sharing files, tracking notes, and dispensing contracts or disclosures. Signing a contract for a property half way around the planet can now be carried out from the couch using E-signature technology. The cloud is making real estate, world-round, and much tighter playing field.