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“Proptech” or property technology is the application of technology to the real estate markets. There are many tech companies that are working to transform the real estate industry, taking into consideration consumption patterns with the help of digital technology. Proptech helps the owners of the property, tenants, and brokers with various tech tools in order to buy, sell, research, or manage a property. This makes the whole process a lot easier and the transactions get streamlined between the owners and tenants.
Businesses today are heavily dependent on technology. The increase in disposable income of persons, digitization, and urbanization have helped in furthering the trend. Real estate is susceptible to technology changes like many other industries and virtual reality and AI is now being regularly used. Software and technology will assist several small and large companies to manage projects across places with greater efficiency. The Proptech market in India is expected to reach a size of $1 trillion by 2030.
The first few Proptech companies in India focused on listing residential and commercial properties. But consumer needs have evolved over a period of time and there is increased use of artificial intelligence and virtual reality. New Proptech businesses have emerged to meet the demands of consumers.
There are two domains in the real estate Proptech-
- Residential property tech-
These are the digital products developed by real estate technology companies to help individuals to own or rent apartments. The products offered are platforms for searching for a property like a marketplace, financing tools, and real estate closing tools.
- Commercial Real Estate Tech or CRETech-
CRETech is the commercial real estate technology that covers the tools used by companies and individual real estate professionals to sell, search or rent an office and industrial property assets. It consists of commercial real estate marketplaces, financing tools, property management tools, and asset utilization.
The future of Proptech would be-
Digitization of data assets-
There is plenty of customer data in the real estate industry which can be used to provide insights, and solutions and improve customer service. Data is available about residential complexes as well as industrial complexes, as a result of which the realtors can come up with improved pricing with the prevalent home trends, plan their advertising campaigns and target the right audience.
Use of Virtual reality-
Real estate brokers would be able to reach customers staying far off and conduct property tours online. This would be a great enabler of online business. Builders have to sell the property before completion and they would be able to display property visuals which would be able to add to the understanding of the customers.
Use of AI and Machine learning
Machine learning is being used by real estate companies to predict real estate prices by analyzing data points. In construction projects, machine learning can analyze various parameters and increase efficiency.
New Construction Technologies-
Robotics and drones are being used for site monitoring, delivering materials, and reducing unnecessary clutter. Technology is providing additional help from bricklaying to masonry, resulting in faster delivery of the project. New energy-efficient homes are planned to have smarter appliances like washing machines, dishwashers, and micro ovens.
Chatbots provide instant customer services on real estate portals and provide leads to human operators. Many of the visitors to a property website would rather use a chatbox than make a phone call. They don’t pressure the clients too much who are asked in due course if they would like to be contacted by a real person.
With the use of blockchain, real estate will be transformed resulting in the removal of inefficiencies. Blockchain technology would minimize the fraud committed and there will be more transparency. Investing in real estate requires money and hard work and the use of blockchain would enable the ownership to be tokenized and split into smaller digital amounts. Fractional ownership would help the retail investors own a part of the property that could be traded using blockchain-based tokens.
Some of the best Proptech companies in India are-
NoBroker connects flat and property owners with the tenants and buyers; in the process making buying, selling, and renting of properties transparent and affordable. It connects property owners with those who want to rent or purchase thereby saving on 1-2 months’ rent or the transaction amount that used to be charged as brokerage.
NoBroker provides property seekers with rental agreements, home loans, and relocation services and facilitates like online rent payment via credit cards, debit cards, net banking, and UPI wallets. It also provides other useful services for homes like painting, cleaning, Ac repair, home sanitization, pest control, carpentry, etc.
Magicbricks is one of India’s leading websites helping in buying, selling, and renting properties. There are other services as well. The “Property Pulse” column of Magicbricks contains real estate news, home loan interests, legal and taxation matters, and an analysis of real estate trends. There is a buyer’s guide which is an eBook that covers stages in property buying and contains answers, tips, and expert advice on how to manage the property buying process.
Housing.com is a real estate platform that allows users to search for properties across 40 cities in India and has various filters like price, location, etc. It provides services to two customer groups: the general customers, who wish to buy, sell or rent properties and the real estate developers, agents, and brokers who wish to market their services.
The company provides information on real estate projects, agents, home loans, and rental agreements. The other information provided is on local amenities, commuting times, price trends, and the location of nearby services. It also operates a cloud-based sales management platform for developers and agents that helps in inventory tracking, and sales management and has lead-tracking tools.
Stanza living is a technology-assisted concept that provides fully managed shared living accommodation to students and young professionals. The amenities provided are meals, internet, housekeeping, security, and community engagement programs. The company engages in long-term lease agreements with developers and property owners who convert their assets into shared living places according to the guidelines of the company.
Square Yards is a fast-growing integrated Proptech platform for real estate and mortgages in India and is also functioning in UAE, other parts of the Middle East, Australia, and Canada. The platform assists in searches, transactions, interiors, home loans, rentals, and property management. It uses Data Analytics and VR tools and is trying to disrupt the traditional marketplace by providing more convenience.
The Proptech companies that would progress would be the ones that will save time and money for people and create an efficient user experience, which would benefit everyone; the developers, investors, and property management companies. Due to advancements in data analytics developers would be better able to spot the trends and the balance of power would shift towards the new technology-savvy real estate companies.