The global real estate industry is enormous. It’s estimated that the global real estate market generates $3.5 trillion USD in revenue each year, a number that’s only poised to grow.
The incredible wealth captured by real estate has made the industry a ripe target for technological disruption. Change has been slower than in other industries, but new innovations in every step of the process are finally beginning to catch on.
The nature of real estate transactions is changing, and innovative real estate technologies are set to have a transformative impact around the world. These are just some of the new technologies you can expect to make waves in one of the world’s biggest industries.
AI and Property Matching
In the past, real estate agents would comb through hundreds of listings looking for properties that matched their clients’ needs. Online listings and search functions have already streamlined that process, and the evolution of Artificial Intelligence is accelerating the property matching process.
Agents can now lean on AI to apply thousands of parameters and rapidly identify the perfect properties for their clients. AI is increasingly being used not just to examine listing details but to comb through bigger data sets about the neighborhood or to stay informed about market conditions.
Marketplace platform Nobul has embraced the way AI can help agents. In the words of Founder and CEO Regan McGee, data is driving change in the industry:
“For so long, the real estate industry has been in the dark ages. But finally, we’re stepping into the light and seeing that business can be conducted much faster and better using these digital tools and techniques that are commonplace in other industries.”
The development of smart contracts using blockchain technology is another promising innovation coming to the real estate industry. Real estate transactions are rife with paperwork, and contracts are major culprits for adding time and costs to every sale and agreement.
Enterprise blockchain innovations already include smart contracts for agreements between consumers and real estate agents, including Listing Agreements and Buyer Representation Agreements.
Expect blockchain to increasingly help manage the web of contracts involved in real estate transactions. Enterprise blockchain is introducing distributable records of agreements and taking unnecessary labor hours out of the contract process.
Major banks and alternative mortgage lenders have largely dropped the ball when it comes to providing digital consumer experiences in the mortgage space. New start-up companies are racing to provide digital mortgages, either acting as brokers between consumers and mortgage lenders or attempting to become alternative lenders in their own right.
The digital mortgage space answers a common problem. Consumers expect to be able to do anything online, and older, bigger industries have been the slowest to catch up.
Digital mortgage companies are focused on speeding up the lending approval process, cutting out a number of fees that are related to lengthy, in-person processes, and making it easier for homebuyers to access existing equity before they buy a new home.