PropTech is the new buzzword that has been increasingly disrupting and changing the landscape of the entire real estate industry over the last few years. Technology companies and start-ups have identified inefficiencies within the industry, so they are now delivering state of the art, tech-bound resolutions to improve efficiency and productivity by digitizing real estate workspaces. PropTech is pretty much the talk of the town because it’s no longer just a niche phenomenon. But what exactly is PropTech, you may be asking? Well, in order to define this trend, here’s everything you need to know.
What Is PropTech?
A portmanteau of ‘property’ and ‘technology’, the term PropTech is frequently used to describe the start-ups within the property marketplace, but it actually refers to any property-specific technology innovation. Whether it’s planning, construction, buying, selling, renting, or managing, PropTech addresses many of the important questions regarding how both real estate agents and end-user experience and extract value from the marketplace.
The entire PropTech ecosystem is a movement toward more efficient systems that is deeply rooted in the digital landscape, trending towards new and future consumer patterns. It encompasses all property processes and is becoming increasingly competitive and comprehensive, by removing, reducing, or supplementing time-consuming tasks with a variety of automated solutions. These advancements help to streamline processes by cutting out the middleman wherever it makes sense to so.
Despite real estate making up a decent percentage of global GDP, the property industry has been struggling to mobilize their technology strategies fast enough to keep up with the change. In fact, technological growth and productivity overall have been relatively slow when compared with many other industries. That being said, the rise and overall acceptance of PropTech throughout the industry is due to the technological changes required to address the requirements and the inconveniences of its end-users and consumers.
And it’s definitely worth pointing out PropTech is really only one small part of the wider digital transformation of the entire real estate industry. Technology-driven innovation is increasingly driving a mentality change within the marketplace, not only with the assembly and transaction of data but with the overall design of buildings and cities as well.
On the future of PropTech
Whilst it’s difficult to predict the future of PropTech with any degree of certainty, there are certainly some pretty well-educated assumptions we can make based on the existing ecosystem and the evolution of fintech and any other previous waves of technology. The initial adoption continued uptake, and ongoing longevity of almost any technology almost always hinges on whether or not it actually improves the overall experience of its users. This means many advancements within the real estate space will likely be enhanced by these new and emerging tech resolutions, whereas many more will most likely be replaced completely.
Property management firm Buttonwood states that in the not too distant future, clients and agents alike will be able to locate and purchase new properties simply by leveraging big data and then use blockchain technology to significantly speed up the entire purchasing process.
Artificial intelligence and other machine learning tools can then be used to recreate the property in augmented reality to allow for any renovations to be visualized, before using 3D printing technology to render and build an exact scale model of the finished product for approval. Once the renovations are completed in the real-world using robotics and more 3D printing, interactive 3D tours in virtual reality can then be offered to assist the sales process with prospective buyers.
As PropTech is already making its presence felt in both residential and commercial marketplaces, the future of technology in the real estate industry is certainly looking more and more exciting. There’s obviously a lot of work and changes ahead before its effects are felt as fully like the current uptake of fintech, but just like any other disruptive technology, the future is definitely much closer than you think.