Real Estate has already experienced some perks of digitalization: services such as Airbnb and Booking.com, for example, allow renters and landlords to streamline their interactions.
But there are things online property shopping just can’t provide. How can a prospective tenant sign a lease or walk around the property online?
In this article, we’ll take a look at how more advanced technology can enhance the online property shopping experience and make real estate agents’ work more effective.
Real Estate Software: The State of Market
According to a recent report from IndustryARC, the real estate software market is expected to grow significantly over the period of 2021-2026.
Here are some major factors driving industry growth:
- Better scalability;
- Continual technological growth;
- Rising business productivity standards.
As Reportlinker claims, the size of the global custom real estate software market was valued at $10.45 billion in 2020. In 2021, it is expected to reach $11.72 billion and continue to grow at a CAGR of 12.435%. By 2026, the market will reach $21.12 billion.
Meeting this growing demand is an abundance of companies providing real estate software to a variety of clients. Here are some of the vendors of property management software that contribute most to that growth:
- Accruent. Offer solutions for real estate, facilities, and asset management. The solutions include integration and business analytics features;
- AMSI. Deliver several types of software such as resident & lead to lease web portals, property management suites, and financial report solutions.
- Appfolio. Provide software to support the full cycle of property management: solutions for communication, servicing, accounting, maintenance, staff training, marketing, and leasing.
In 2020, the real estate market was shaken up by the COVID-19 pandemic. Many companies switched to remote working: Facebook, Twitter, Google, and others allowed staff to work from home.
With almost everybody gone from the office, businesses looked into scaling down office space. For instance, Pinterest paid $89.5 million to terminate their San Francisco office lease.
In Europe, the use of office space dropped by 32% in the first half of 2020.
As the pandemic continues, companies are bringing some workers back to the office, but have put plans to let everybody go back on hold. Most tech vendors in North America have allowed employees to work from home indefinitely.
Real estate companies are adapting to the new reality, too, focusing on offering services online in a more effective way.
Customers of Real Estate Software
Real estate is a complex industry that serves the needs of a huge variety of customers, who have a wide variety of needs, wishes, and problems they want to solve.
Therefore it’s essential for real estate software vendors to provide customizable solutions that cater to each client’s specific needs.
Let’s take a look at what customers expect from real estate apps in 2022 and how various solutions can help solve their problems.
- Property buyers. Clients who want to buy a property would like a software solution that allows them to easily browse available options, review the ones they like, and talk to an agent about them. In addition, online payment plan calculators and virtual tours would be outstanding features to attract new clients.
- Owners and renters. Property owners would benefit greatly from software that allows for accurate asset evaluation and renovation analysis.
Those renting out property would love a solution that helps them list their offerings.
Renters also need software that presents them with their real estate options in any location. They would benefit from detailed search filtering, allowing them to find the property they are looking for within their budget, a listing with a ton of relevant information such as floor plan, photographs, details about amenities and the neighborhood, and so on. Another great addition is a built-in chat function to let renters talk to a landlord and discuss the conditions.
- Developers and renovators. Companies dealing with building and renovating existing properties need to work efficiently with their resources. Paired with property development software, Enterprise Resource Planning software, or ERP, can help companies track how they manage their resources, analyze data, and find ways to optimize their workflows.
- Facilitators. Specialists who help property owners and buyers reach a deal can make good use of the best CRM for real estate which allows them to keep track of every client they have.
|Property buyers||Listing apps|
|Owners and renters||Property management software, listing apps|
|Developers and renovators||ERP solutions, service work software|
So, the real estate software market serves all kinds of customers and carries out all kinds of tasks. Now, let’s take a closer look at some major real estate solutions and discuss the problems they solve.
Real Estate Software Solutions Your Teams Need for 2022
As we’ve established, real estate software includes a wide selection of solutions to facilitate property management, client interactions, and various internal processes.
Let’s consider some categories of custom real estate software to see how they help real estate businesses achieve their goals.
Property management software
Property management software is a complex solution that allows real estate companies to keep track of all of their properties and manage them.
The software usually includes an app for use by owners, landlords, buyers, and tenants: they can interact through the app to list properties, review them, and negotiate purchasing or renting conditions.
In addition, the software provides a mortgage calculator to help buyers negotiate a deal that works for them.
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Head of Sales
All of the data on properties that the app collects is visualized and presented in the form of easily readable dashboards. This gives managers a clear picture of their assets and helps optimize their work.
AppFolio’s property management solution is currently considered one of the best on the market. The application is packed with features to the brim, including:
- Rent collection and utility billing;
- Accounting tools;
- Maintenance requests;
- Marketing tools;
- Tenant screening;
- Customizable online leases.
Listing software and rental apps
Rental apps let property owners and landlords list their real estate for others to buy and rent.
These apps present available properties and provide potential buyers or renters with every detail they want to know: the property’s location and neighborhood, condition, pricing, available amenities, and pictures.
For buyers and tenants, the app can offer comparison features, allowing them to make a well-informed choice. Also, potential tenants can apply for a property right through the app and talk to the landlord to get more information via chat.
A great example of a listing and rental app would be Zumper. This app is aimed at making leasing a long-term rental as seamless as booking a hotel. Using the software, renters can:
- Search through the app’s content using detailed criteria;
- Get notifications when a property that fits the preferred criteria appears on the app;
- Apply for a property online;
- Make deposits right through the app.
Service work software
Property development software can help renovators and developers track their expenses and resources and manage construction projects.
Such software also includes the following features:
- Project scheduling;
- Task management;
- Financial management;
- Customer and service management.
Speaking of great service work software, one example is BuilderTREND. This solution comes with everything needed for renovation or construction project management and budgeting. The app features a built-in CRM.
CRM for real estate
Customer relationship management systems are a great way for a business to keep track of every client they have and ensure that the sales process goes as smoothly as possible.
The software also provides data analytics features to help real estate agents get a better idea of their sales performance and see the company’s current strengths and weaknesses in a visual way that’s convenient to use.
For instance, one top real estate CRM, Contactually, offers several intelligent features on top of the usual package: the system is able to recommend the best time to send emails to clients and to prioritize tasks. For those who find themselves sending what feels like a million messages a day, there is also a template library.
Trends in the Real Estate Software Market
Real estate software makes business a lot more transparent for company employees and provides a convenient way for clients to interact with those companies.
The software helps a real estate business keep tabs on all of its assets and clients, while clients can book, sell, buy, rent, and request other real estate-related services remotely. There are no lines, no driving around, a lot less paperwork.
But that’s not all; many real estate businesses are looking into advanced technology to improve the quality of their services and gain a competitive edge.
So, let’s look at developing trends in the real estate software market.
VR in real estate
Listing apps are a very convenient way for clients and real estate agents to interact remotely. But internet-based communication has one huge limitation—its inability to convey physical experiences.
What do we mean by that? You can certainly rent out an apartment or apply for a mortgage online. But you can’t really “see” the property beyond the provided pictures.
This is where Virtual Reality can help out: VR tours help clients get a better feel for the property without actually setting foot in it. The immersive experience leaves a better impression and decreases the hesitation clients may feel when looking for real estate online.
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Virtual Reality can also be used to enhance:
- Floor plans;
- 3D presentations.
Increased immersive contributes to generating more leads and sales, especially since the major buying force currently is millennials, who are interested in tech-enhanced experiences.
Internet of Things technology can find a ton of use cases when it comes to real estate.
The major one is asset management. Real estate companies can use technology to monitor the condition of their properties. Through connected hardware, they can get insights and see if some properties require renovation.
IoT is also the basis of smart home and smart city technology. Properties powered by smart home devices are more comfortable to live in and are considered more valuable assets.
Another great application of IoT to real estate is Digital Twins. The technology allows for creating virtual replicas of buildings, neighbourhoods, and even whole cities to analyze how they work and find ways to reduce energy consumption, enable better city planning, and predict disasters.
Due to global environmental concerns, large industries are looking into ways to reduce their energy consumption, on their own initiative or because of local policies.
Real estate is being given the same task, and some are going about it in a smart way.
With the help of the Internet of Things, households can participate in gamified challenges to save energy.
Households can get points for performing various actions that reduce energy consumption: turning off devices not in use, for instance, or using a dishwasher more conservatively.
Then, the households may get their performance evaluated and stacked up against their neighbors. The best-performing households can be rewarded with electricity bill discounts or gifts.
How Much Does It Cost to Create Custom Real Estate Software?
Like any other type of software, the cost of real estate apps in 2022 will grow fairly high if you’re not careful. The key to making sure you don’t spend a fortune on real estate software development is to understand the factors that go into the final price.
Let’s break that down a bit.
Types of real estate apps
All kinds of software benefit various parts of the real estate industry: property management programs, listing apps, CRMs, and service work solutions.
They differ in number of features and in scale, the choice of which determines the expertise and amount of resources it takes to build them.
The development team
The development team is also a huge factor in the overall cost of real estate software development.
Cost depends on the number of specialists on the development team and their rates.
A regular real estate software development team consists of:
- Business Analyst;
- Project Manager;
- UX/UI Designer;
- QA Engineers.
There are various scenarios for cooperation: if you have an in-house development team and want to bring in a couple of experienced developers to help and share the expertise, then the cost comes down to paying an hourly rate to the programmers you hire.
On the other hand, a company building a solution with no expertise on board will need to hire the whole team to manage project budgeting, break the project into tasks, build features and the app’s look, and test it.
Some costs can be cut by hiring remote workers from an area where rates are lower. For instance, developers from countries such as Estonia work for $35/hour while providing a great level of expertise.
Based on such rates, a rough estimate for a real estate software solution would be:
|Size of real-estate business||Cost|
|Mid-size business||$50 000|
|Large business||$80 000|
Our Success Story
HQSoftware is an experienced software provider in the real estate industry. Our development team has completed several projects to help real estate businesses expand their clientele and increase sales.
Real estate platform adjusted to the country’s market specifics
The real estate agency needed an application that allowed apartment owners to list their properties online for tenants to rent. The application targeted a specific real estate market, enabling owners to not only list the whole apartment but also separate rooms or even beds for renting.
The solution featured an advanced search algorithm with filtering options and a booking calendar.
VoIP application for calls, photos, and drawing
Our team has also worked with a client on a mobile application for field service workers in real estate. The application enables workers to make VoIP calls and take pictures of construction sites during those calls. The app also includes a drawing tool so workers can mark pictures up and share them with others.
Being aware of the connection issues field service specialists might encounter, the developers made sure the application behaved appropriately.
A cross-platform application connecting house owners and service providers
The HQSoftware development team has delivered a solution that allows homeowners to request house maintenance services, such as appliance repairs, redecoration, and utility maintenance.
The requested services are just a couple of taps away. The client doesn’t have to get on the phone, talk to a robot, or wait in a queue for the request to get processed.
There are search filtering options, such as type of appliance in need of service, service provider area of operation, and a rating system.
If you have a similar project in mind, drop us a line. We will make sure that you get the best collaboration experience and an excellent product.
Head of Production
Oversees all production processes and manages the Quality Assurance department. Develops the company’s IoT, AR, VR, AI, and ML expertise.
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