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Investors pour into proptech; who and what are the next big things?

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Investors pour into proptech; who and what are the next big things?

Whether finding, financing or finessing their next home, Australians are embracing proptech like never before.

Whether finding, financing or finessing their next home, Australians are embracing proptech – property technology – like never before.

A recent capital raising of $1.6m by an Australian investment platform is the latest high-profile display of the impact proptech is having on the real estate industry and consumer behaviour in the property sector.

Proptech refers to software and services that enable people to engage with other businesses, customers and industry professionals digitally.

The technology’s ability to assist with how people buy, rent, sell and manage their property has seen these innovations adopted globally.

From capturing real-time data, increasing efficiencies and reducing costs, through to enabling meaningful investment decisions to be achieved, the benefits of proptech are proving increasingly attractive to investors.

The real estate industry had been slow to embrace digital technology. The influence of the pandemic coupled with businesses in the industry recognising the value of technology has prompted the industry to begin embracing the disruption.

Founder and president of the Proptech Association Australia, Kylie Davis told Australian Property Investor Magazine that there is a major disruption taking place in how real estate is being transacted.

“It is being driven by buyers and investors who are seeking more transparency, better service and time-saving measures,” she said.

Residential Proptech Landscape

Combining data and tech smarts with human expertise, PropHero is the latest example of a business transforming the way Australians buy and sell their property.

With a focus on making investing simple, transparent, time-efficient and profitable, they’ve built and launched a platform that helps people buy property in New South Wales and Queensland.

Pablo Gil Brusola, the co-founder of PropHero, said the platform makes property investing accessible to a younger generation who have savings and want a simple digital experience.

“We also have older clients who like our data-driven approach so they can diversify their property portfolios.

“We’re cutting down the time it takes to invest in property by 90 per cent because we have a digital platform and a network of trusted professionals,” Mr Brusola said.

Trends to watch out for in 2022

The ever-evolving proptech industry is moving at a rapid pace and it can be hard to keep up.

These are some of the most eye-catching trends to keep an eye out for in 2022:

  1. Virtual tours and augmented reality

    Fuelled by the pandemic, attending a virtual tour instead of showing up in person became the new normal for most people.

    With life beginning to return to normal, there’s no rush to remove virtual tours. Businesses around the world are slowly transitioning into utilising drone work and augmented reality to make the digital experience more exciting as we move beyond the pandemic’s restrictive hold.

  2. Artificial intelligence neighbourhood analysis

    When buying a home, neighbourhood research is a must, but this can be a very time-consuming and manual task for potential homebuyers.

    Artificial intelligence is enabling potential homebuyers to discover a suitable suburb based on what’s important to the buyer, such as proximity to the city, nightlife, restaurants and parks just to name a few. The technology then recommends suburbs that would be suitable based on their input.

  3. Internet of Things (IoT) devices

    IoT devices are an affordable solution businesses, renters and homeowners can use to reduce costs, improve efficiencies and increase productivity.

    What are they? Well, they’re smart devices such as gadgets, sensors or appliances that are connected wirelessly to technology to talk to each other and us. They collect, send and, in some circumstances, act upon information received.

    They enable their users to make meaningful decisions on a range of things, including energy efficiency, property valuations, automated building and security. According to Intel, the global IoT market is set to hit $6.2 trillion by 2025.

COVID accelerating tech takeup

Proptech became the lifeline of the real estate market during the pandemic, with investors, renters and homeowners unable to travel, view properties or attend meetings in-person, many were turning to the internet for answers.

As life begins to move on from the pandemic, will proptech still have a role?

The Emerging Trends in Real Estate Report 2022 released by PwC and the Urban Land Institute, illustrated the belief of public and private investors in the growth and maturity of the proptech market post-pandemic in the US and Canada.

The report stated that the Global PropTech Investor Confidence Index is at 8.9 out of 10 and 54 per cent of investors expect to make more investments in 2022.

Company Proptech Adoption

Here in Australia, the growth of the sector is at 8.2 per cent for companies generating more than $1 million in annual revenue in 2021, according to the Australian Property Investor Map.

“It is being driven by buyers and investors who are seeking more transparency, better service and time-saving measures.” Ms Davis said.

The 2022 Australian PropTech Summit kicks off in March this year and is a great opportunity to explore how proptech can add real value to a business, property or home.

Five companies leading the proptech revolution in 2022

Opendoor

Revolutionising the way residential real estate is transacted, the San Francisco founded company makes it simple to buy and sell a home through their digital platform. You can even do it on your mobile device.

Soho

The Australian founded company utilises data and machine learning and the platform matches users with their dream home when searching for properties. The platform also connects users with a real estate community, updates and market trends to enable them to make informed decisions.

Yourkeys

Enabling real-time transactions, the London based company offers a platform that enables house builders and real estate agents to onboard buyers, give buyers the ability to track their purchase and follow the sale progression in real time.

Hover

Transforming smartphone photos of properties into realistic and interactive 3D models through deep learning, Hover is enabling homeowners to unlock the full potential of their home and create their dream home. Users can purchase materials through the app too.

Pacaso

With a mission to make owning a second home simple, Pacaso has created an app and SmartStay technology to reduce the cost and hassle through their innovative co-ownership opportunities. People select a house from their featured collection and they work with other interested parties to determine sales details and even close the deal.

They also take care of furnishing, repairs and property management utilising innovative technology.

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