Just like any other industry today, real estate benefits from using the most advanced and up-to-date tools available to professionals in the field. For realtors and others that inhabit the market sector, such as real estate property managers, this means leveraging one or more of the most useful software platforms available to help with the day-to-day tasks associated with the job.
Software development is an ongoing matter. As industry needs change, the tools the industry uses adapt and change alongside it to remain relevant and to provide the types of functionalities needed for this new future. As the New Year comes ever closer, it’s the perfect opportunity to investigate the most current trends in software and what they can do for your real estate-focused business over the coming 12 months.
The current paradigm for home searches is based on so-called structured data. This translates to hard, easily quantifiable figures such as number of bedrooms, total square footage, and so on – but this doesn’t often paint the full picture of the property. This sends real estate agents on a treasure hunt to find the other information they need to help both buyers and sellers, and much of this activity is manual – it involves searching, by hand, for comparables, which is a time-consuming process to be sure.
This lost time could easily be spent in pursuit of any number of other activities, but there has been little in the way of functional ways around this issue. However, 2022 seems to be shaping to be a banner year in providing better personalization in property search thanks to the efforts of software designers creating search engines and algorithms that leverage machine learning and artificial intelligence. Soon, it may be commonplace to begin seeing MLS listings populated with more unstructured types of data that offer better overall information about a given property without having to spend excess time and energy hunting down these particulars.
It will come as no surprise that the entirety of the business world has had to make use of new software technologies over the past year or more. From 2020 and onwards, the necessities of battling a global pandemic saw just about every business sector transition, sometimes without warning or preparation, to a remote working paradigm, and the real estate industry is no exception. The catch, however, is that buying and selling properties is challenging when it becomes dangerous to meet with clients face-to-face, let alone show properties to interested buyers.
Virtual collaboration technology has adapted masterfully to this sudden demand for remote working capabilities. Video conferencing software and 3D virtual home imaging platforms have made it easier than ever to conduct almost all of the necessary steps remotely, and the lessons learned from having no choice but to weather a pandemic have resulted in a strong push to continue creating virtual and remote tools that are effective in aiding realtors and clients meet, discuss plans, and examine properties. 2022 will continue this trend, and we can expect to see more virtual options with ever-increasing quality to aid in remote realty.
If there’s one thing that has remained largely unchanged over the course of modern real estate history, it’s the fundamental way that closing and title processes have remained essentially the same. However, these processes are quickly becoming antiquated, especially in a modern society that expects expedience, transparency, and simplicity all without compromising security. Finding solutions that tick all these boxes has been a challenge to be sure, but now, new software solutions are poised to provide the answer.
This new technology comes, surprisingly, from the somewhat inscrutable world of cryptocurrency. While you won’t be seeing buyers and sellers using Bitcoin to make real estate transactions anytime soon, the software behind crypto, the decentralized database technology known as the blockchain, is being trialed to use online closing services and title insurance. Blockchain is both inherently secure as well as transparent, making it ideal for creating unalterable transaction records, and it’s only a matter of time before this software-based approach revolutionizes the way the title and closing process works.
Just about every business knows the benefits of using a customer management system for keeping track of clients and projects. A solid CMS can do more than store client data – it can act as a highly robust workflow management platform, in this case allowing agents to schedule client meetings, property showings, open houses, and anything else necessary to run a successful realty business. However, if there’s one thing that’s not ideal when it comes to using a CMS as a workflow management platform, it’s the lack of accessibility; many of these software suites are simply overly complex to use and understand, requiring a large amount of time dedicated to simply learning the ins and outs of the platform before an agent can use one effectively.
Thankfully, 2022 is likely to be the year of simplicity when it comes to the learning curve associated with these software platforms. Your average CMS is becoming more agile and easier to understand by leaps and bounds as the business industry prioritizes ease of use alongside robust feature sets. The real estate industry is set to reap the rewards of this movement; as the workflow management platform market becomes increasingly democratized and competitive, this breeds the kind of innovation that will make a solid CMS more of an ally than ever in the coming year.
Every new year brings innovation, and 2022 will be no different. If past is prologue, the real estate industry is poised to showcase even more growth in the coming year, and this will yet again drive new and better software solutions that will continue to make the lives of real estate professionals safer, easier, and more productive.