‘Proptech’is the community of small to medium-size new companies that are launching online services into the property market. They are a swarm of smaller businesses changing the way property transacts. Some of the digital world’s best minds are fixing their brains on making the property game more seamless, for purchasers, vendors, agents, investors and developers in the sales market.
As the Millennials (born after 1980) market continues to open everything needs to be a few clicks away, mobile and tablet ownership is near saturation point (93 per cent) and usage levels not far behind, 66 per cent of us use a mobile device to go online. So when it comes to buying property they expect a service that reflect this.
Richard White, CEO of Goodlord, a consumer and business-to-business app and online platform that helps agents manage the process of setting up a tenancy more smoothly says, “the property market is an industry steeped in history and, to a certain extent, set in its ways but, perhaps later than other sectors such as retail or transport, technology is starting to have a real bearing on the property industry.” “But we’re only at the start of this process and I think there’s so much more to come yet.”
Almost every corner of the property industry now has at least one proptech company launching a solution into what it sees as convoluted and highly manual operational areas: conveyancing, valuations, property development and investment, document handling, lead generation, key management services and planning. Estates IT has 35 integrated proptech partners and had to put up a webpage explaining who they were, they include Adobe Sign, Growth News, Mail Chimp and BriefYourMarket and 24X.
The modern agent is looking for a, “different proposition and wants to exploit proptech services to give them a business advantage, and because the property sector is a large vertical market it has lots of niches which these companies look to exploit.” Agents might have feared technology, assuming to be a threat, but the mood of the market is changing and agents now recognise that technology can give them an edge.