According to an article in realtor.com, this technology could be extremely useful for real estate in the future and it may mean that seeing a home in person will become a thing of the past. It is easy to see the immediate appeal of this type of technology that will bring a listing directly to buyers regardless of whether they live round the corner or in a different country.
When they were first introduced, virtual reality headsets were seen as being most useful for gamers but now an increasing number of more commercial applications are being found. As a result, virtual reality is gradually entering into the world of real estate as more brokerages become accustomed to the newer technology. It’s anticipated that a greater number of consumers will purchase a virtual reality headset during the next few years, creating a huge opportunity for real estate agents, particularly those who are more focused on selling luxury properties. Obviously the introduction of this technology does largely depend on consumers purchasing these headsets and with a number of sophisticated models being launched this year, this is looking increasingly likely.
One real estate agent in Los Angeles has already been experimenting with this new technology for more than a year, with clients being able to tour multi-million dollar homes in 3-D simply by putting on the headset available in their real estate office. The technology enables viewers to look from side to side and up and down and to take in all the salient details in a house. In New York, a brokerage has begun using 3-D mockups to show commercial spaces to potential clients, and with the use of virtual staging, they are able to see how the offices can be outfitted which is far easier than simply viewing an empty space.
At the moment real estate agents who wish to use virtual reality need to buy their own headsets and they also need equipment powerful enough to capture a scan or 3-D video of the property and which will be compatible with the headset. Alternatively they may choose to work with companies who are experienced in virtual reality production. Apparently a 3-D scan of a 3,000 ft.² home costs around $500, but if the virtual reality video is shot professionally then the costs can be $3,000 or more, making their use only likely when marketing luxury properties. However the potential for saving time is huge and there is little doubt that this technology will become more accessible.