At the global level, real estate sector is worth USD 217 trillion. Yet, it is one of the last industries to sweep up technological change. As an essential component of smart cities, the property market has growing number of lucrative opportunities in the form of proptech that will set it apart in the urban space.
Coming to a young and thriving country like UAE, 7.8 million expats who have settled there and other millions of tourist population are driving innovative growth in the real estate sector of the region. Global investors are increasingly showing interest in buying properties in the UAE, especially in Dubai and Abu Dhabi which is again a key driver to proptech adoption in the real estate sector. However, to fully adopt proptech and meet the demands of property buyers and tenants, there are a number of factors that need to be considered and followed.
The smart city government, as well as the private sector in the UAE, is showcasing efforts in implementing technological changes in the property market while keeping a close eye on the consumer behaviour, landlord-tenant relationships, the use of technology within the consumers and much more. What further makes these efforts more impactful is events like the Proptech Middle East 2018, which is taking place on 29th and 30th October 2018 at Sofitel Dubai The Palm Resort & Spa. This one-of-its-kind event of the Middle East will throw light on the benefits, opportunities, and challenges of embracing the technology.
So from the topics that will be the centre of discussion at the event, we have selected two of them that will provide you an idea of the event.
Leveraging Technology to Attract and Maintain Property Consumers
What are tenants and property buyers behaviour towards technology while performing activities that are relevant to the property market? Can proptech be beneficial in improving the real estate dealings, transactions, and user experience? The HSBC-commissioned new report on the use of property technology among the UAE home buyers answers these questions.
According to the report, 72% of the UAE buyers search for available property online. 67% use the internet to check the value of their existing property, 65% search for information on taxes and regulations, 65% explore the best place to live while 64% find out the prospective home prices.
The first-year global research report from HSBC penetrates into understanding how people feel and behave when buying and renting homes. It measures how the use of technology in the real estate market is bringing proptech to the UAE. The research includes the views of more than 9,000 people in nine countries from which over 1,000 are respondents are in the UAE.
Based on the research, the findings predict that the kind of impact financial technology (Fintech) is having on the banking sector, Proptech will have the same kind of effect on the property market.
Going further, there is much more potential for proptech to improve home buying and renting experience in the UAE than in other 8 countries. Firstly, the use of proptech in the UAE is lower than the other countries. Secondly, UAE respondents admitted to having experienced higher levels of stress during the home-buying journey than others.
67% of the UAE home buyers responded that they use websites, mobile devices and email to perform research on the property purchase as against 83% from other countries.
Further, to explore financing options, 61% of UAE respondents said that they use online resources compared to the average 74% from other countries.
62% of UAE buyers experienced increasing stress while dealing with people compared to 37% in other countries. 49% of the UAE buyers said they get stressed while negotiating prices (other countries – 29%) while 40% worry over fees in the UAE (other countries – 28%)
Hence, it is clear from the report that as property buyers are increasingly using technology, there is great potential in the UAE for proptech. A dynamic integration of artificial intelligence, virtual reality, predictive analysis, big data to real estate can improve the experience of home buyers by enabling them to view more number of properties and narrow down their choice by leveraging the proptech.
The On-demand Consumer
If proptech is focused on improving tenant experience, it can significantly contribute to tenant retention and overall growth. The property management needs to understand this if they are to provide the best service to landlords and tenants. They need to transform the way communications, transactions and dealings are accomplished by leveraging proptech. Fortunately, the property managers in the UAE are realising this fact and gradually turning to technology to offer the best possible service.
In this tech-driven world, when people want their requests to be easily transferred to the relevant authority they immediately use their smartphone for a chat-driven access to customer support. Considering this fact, property managers need to connect directly with the tenants and the landlords using technology so that their requests are immediately heard. This not just enhances the user experience but also improves the relationship between the tenant and the landlord, tenant and the property manager or the landlord and the property manager.
With the right support using technology, property management can save the time and money of the tenants or landlords and even add more value in the form of growth in tenant retention and ultimate gain in the property value. The points discussed below can help property management to understand the same.
1) Enhancing communications
Property management is responsible to make the processes and administration more efficient. If technology is added to this, it can take the tenant experience to a new level. Property managers can provide a direct contact line to the tenants so that their requests are transferred quickly and efficiently. This also helps the property management to understand where the happiness and the unhappiness of the tenant lie to the greater extent.
2) Prioritising consumer’s issues
A direct communication line between the consumer and the property management ensures that their issues are resolved with due prioritization. It also enables the management to understand the most pressing needs of the consumer by spotting the issues that affect the consumers at large.
3) Understanding the importance of technology
When property managers are serving the consumers with the direct line of communication they need to use the most reliable and effective way of communication that serves the need comprehensively. In this age of digital technology, people place their prime value on 24/7 communication service line and transparency. Considering this, property management needs to use the most advanced and reliable proptech that can improve consumer’s happiness levels and enhance consumer retention.
4) Providing Interactive Buildings
Apart from an advanced communication feature, property management should ensure that the building environment is perfect for a particular client. They need to show efforts in providing a smooth operating interface between the consumer and the building. The building operations should ensure that it meets the consumer expectations and requirements most effectively. Again to accomplish this proptech can prove to be highly beneficial.
However, playing the role of a property manager is no easy job. While emphasizing on enhancing the consumer experience and meeting the demands efficiently, there may be challenges that have to be faced. Hence, to understand these challenges and drive an informed change, UAE is welcoming its leading event Proptech Middle East 2018 to Dubai.
The proptech revolution is not just targeting the consumer community, but at the broader level, it is adding another important tech-driven feature to the smart cities of the future.