Technology is moving incredibly fast, so quickly in fact, that as soon as a new gadget is revealed, the public are eagerly anticipating the next model. The introduction of tech in the property market has initially been a slow starter compared to other sectors, but it is certainly kicking off this year.
Property Investment in 2016
The traditional method of selling your home has swiftly gone digital, with the launch of online estate agents such as Tepilo, and eMoov, both attempting to save their customers money by cutting out the middle man so to speak and providing home sellers a chance to market their property to a much wider audience, at a much lower cost than using a local estate agent.
The number of buy-to-let landlords browsing the internet to expand their property portfolio is growing considerably. Who can blame them! The old fashioned way to find a property is to visit a number of estate agents in the location where you hope to buy a property and either look at the properties with limited information in the window or set up a number of viewings which can take up hours of your time to get through. With one click you can see hundreds of potential properties that may interest you, all with high-quality images and long descriptions detailing every aspect the property has to offer. The search tools on sites such as Rightmove also have the added benefit of filtering your search to narrow down your results even further to suit your requirements.
Yes, the traditional method of selling your home has gone digital, but the technology that may be available in the next couple of years could seriously transform the whole process of buying a new home or expanding your property portfolio in a smart and efficient way. (1)
2025 Property Search
In just under ten years, experts predict that finding a new home will be a completely alien experience to property hunters today. With the availability of drone technology, virtual reality and interactive properties, searching for a property is set to become extremely different.
If you’re searching for your next home, investing in a small drone could enable you to fly over the top of a property that you’re interested in buying and allow you to explore every inch of the exterior as well as the neighbour’s garden, the road it sits on and the proximity it is to the nearest school, train station or shops.
The use of drone technology will heighten the experience of searching for a property, giving you the unique opportunity to explore a new home like never before. You can not only view the property but you will also be able to analyse noise levels, view the surrounding neighbourhood and even calculate the distance to and from your place of work.
Drones could also allow you to search up and down streets looking for potential properties to invest in, although you won’t be looking out for traditional sale signs as these will more than likely be replaced with digital notifications streamed to your devices that will potentially guide your drone to the property that suits your personalised requirements. (2)
Virtual reality could radically transform the way we view properties in the next couple of years. No more awkward viewings, standing in the master bedroom of a home, trying to size up the room and imagine your furniture fitting in, while the homeowner continuously apologises for the mess, whilst keeping one hand on the collar of their dog who is desperately trying to jump all over you. Virtual reality will allow potential buyers to view a property from an office space, walking through the property and analysing the pros and cons of the property in their own time.
Despite the type of technology having initially been around for longer than anyone would like to admit, it is only now that the experience of using the VR headsets are being developed and taken seriously. (3)
Home is a place of rest, play, education and memories but technology is set to make staying in on a Saturday night a whole new experience. In a matter of years, your home could become completely interactive, with wearable technology alerting other gadgets around your home to perform certain tasks. Movie nights in could be automated with a wave of your hand, popcorn could be automatically prepared and the heating will warm up after 7 pm, closing the curtains after it goes dark and dimming the lights to ease sleep after 11 pm, making sure to set your alarm for the next day.
Waking up for work on a Monday morning, you could be met with the aromatic smell of freshly ground coffee being automatically prepared and your blinds slowly opening to promote a more natural wake up.
Ok, maybe we’re going a bit overboard with the automated futuristic home, but the technology is already available, it is simply down to affordability, practicality and of course demand.
The launch of online property portals such as Trulia and Zillow in the US and Rightmove in the UK have increased the demand for property investment and crowdfunding. Advertising within the property market has increased the demand for landlords in the UK and crowdfunding has emerged to bridge the gap between those hopeful landlords with a minimal budget and those with sufficient equity to invest immediately.
Digital property companies are disrupting the UK property market in a positive way. Hubble matches landlords and tenants seeking flexible office space in London in a very similar way to the hugely successful Airbnb. Property Moose is a crowdfunding platform designed to give investors the chance to invest in UK property from as little as £500. (4) Asset Mapping is a 3D visualisation software mapping building’s infrastructure such as air conditioning, plumbing, smoke detectors and security cameras, to increase the efficiency of building management. (5)
There is no doubt that technological advances are set to shape the UK property market and it is only a matter of time before the above become the norm and even become out-dated. Share your thoughts on the matter by tweeting us directly @theheatongroup. We will respond to all tweets.