Technology and the Future of Commercial Real Estate
August 1, 2019
Founder & Owner, Kris Lindahl Real Estate
Commercial real estate has changed dramatically over the years, and modern technology has become an essential tool for successful real estate professionals. From marketing to internal communication, it seems the applications of technology are only limited by one’s drive and imagination.
Professionals need to know the different tools available to them, as well as the trends that continue to change the niche they operate in. Understanding the following new and evolving technologies can help real estate professionals in the commercial space expand their businesses today and prepare for the future.
Cloud Computing and Smart Contracts
Cloud computing makes sending documents simple and fast. Cloud computing also allows real estate professionals to set up a mobile office anywhere they go. Whether they’re on the road, on-site with a client, or in a meeting with industry contacts, cloud computing makes it possible to access documents from any mobile or desktop device.
Cloud computing has been around for several years now, and file-sharing software, in particular, is abundant. Real estate agents have their pick of different companies. When selecting a file-sharing platform, it’s best to choose one that clients are familiar with and feel comfortable using. This helps ensure that customers will feel more secure in their dealings with their real estate agent. Blockchain-based smart contracts may further revolutionize the security and efficiency of online interactions from the purchasing of real estate to tenant services.
Virtual reality technology is relatively new, and many people still have not experienced VR first-hand. However, a growing number of real estate professionals are pushing to use VR for purposes of marketing and selling real estate.
What are the benefits? VR allows people to experience real estate from afar. Whether they’re across town or in another state, anyone can tour and evaluate a building from the comfort of their desk chair. VR allows the client to make a preliminary check of a building without spending money on a plane ticket. VR technologies allow clients to narrow the field of choices conveniently. Many clients may not be comfortable buying sight “unseen” with VR at the moment, but – as this technology (and the way it is implemented) progresses – that number may shrink.
Communication is critical for real estate professionals. Good communication skills are critical for negotiating a transaction and following up with leads. For a real estate agent, it’s not just what you say, or how you say it: it’s also how efficiently you say it. Real estate professionals have to move fast in order to get clients, keep clients, and close deals.
Communication software helps real estate professionals organize their inbox and respond more quickly to inquiries. Good communication software can also help real estate professionals prioritize their emails and create to-do lists. Often communication software syncs with a calendar feature that helps the user keep track of appointments and send calendar items to clients.
However, all of this may just be scratching the surface of what CRM can contribute to a business. Artificial intelligence may offer features such as predictive lead scoring, robust data analytics, and recommendations based on client interactions. AI has already been implemented in many popular CRM platforms — as more time passes and more data is gathered, the impact of this technology is sure to only increase.
Renewable energy is becoming increasingly important to commercial building owners, and the ways in which energy is being captured/stored are advancing at an impressive rate. This cutting-edge technology makes commercial buildings more desirable to many investors and potential buyers. While a real estate agent may not control which green features their clients choose to install on their buildings, it is in an agent’s best interests to understand and be able to discuss green features with those who inquire about them.
The Future is Here
Those who have been in the game for a long time are likely aware of how technology is always shaping the way we do business. Now is the time to become familiar and comfortable with the technology that will affect the industry tomorrow. Information is more accessible than ever, and fortune will favor those who stay informed. We don’t know what the “I don’t need a website”-equivalent will be in the future, but it should be clear that successful businesses will avoid falling into a similar state of mind with truly disruptive technology.