The COVID-19 pandemic brought unprecedented changes across a spectrum of industries – including the real estate sector. Considering the processes that the real estate industry entails, transforming and accepting remote processes became not only challenging but also of paramount importance simultaneously.
How has the pandemic impacted the real estate industry?
As expected, the majority of showings and the open houses took a backseat because of the pandemic. Buyer options became restricted, with limited to no means to explore and verify the properties. This time period haunted both the agents and the sellers considering the legalities that required the presence of both parties in person. Additionally, real estate agent income plummeted and building projects (both commercial and residential) came to a standstill.
The housing crisis of 2007-09, being still fresh, made sellers and agents apprehensive of similar circumstances knocking on the door. The distribution of loans was a risk and it impacted the buyers similarly when attempting to close on real estate purchases.
What changed because of the pandemic?
The real estate industry saw numerous impactful changes as a result of the pandemic; many of these changes not only paved the way for the growth of the real estate business but also made buying and selling processes more streamlined. Changes such as actuated 3D tours, virtual showings, electronically signed contracts, zoom meeting closure, mobile and remote notaries, and much more have now become a permanent part of the industry and inspired continued technological growth.
In this blog, we will take a look at some of the popular and useful digitization tools that changed the face of the real estate industry and made the process much easier and more convenient.
Client Management via Cloud Apps
Client management apps can greatly increase efficiency in the real estate domain. Where the realtors, sellers, and buyers need to keep track of client-related tasks, client management apps like Moxtra and Propertybase can come to the rescue. Using these apps can remove any dependence on manual work by offering smart automations.
With the advancement in technology, there has been an exponential rise in the number of features available in client management apps, allowing realty professionals to choose apps that offer features to meet their needs. These apps may include features like calendars, contact management, email marketing, property management, and listing processing.
Take Advantage of Electronic Signatures
The process of buying and selling a property is rewarding, but it’s not a cakewalk. There are multiple steps as well as legalities involved in the realty process, which means more intervention from the perspective of verification and signatures.
During the pandemic, it became difficult to process paperwork transactions in person; this created a huge gap and proved to be a roadblock to closing deals. This is where electronic signature providers like Foxit eSign came to the rescue.
Important real estate document processes, such as listing contracts, loan estimates, approval letters, appraisal letters, title search documents, closure documentation, and more were simplified by utilizing electronic signature software solutions. With Foxit eSign, you can upload a document and eSign it anytime and from anywhere. This helpful tool can also send a signed document from within its framework to multiple parties at the same time with just a few clicks. Not only this, but you can also further streamline with the usage of templates and through integrations with apps realtors use regularly such as Slack, Gmail, Dropbox, Salesforce, and more.
Foxit eSign comes with many other features to not only help in the e-verification process but also in exhibiting your company’s brand. Additionally, the company places special focus on automation to make the digital signature process easy for everyone and features important identity proving and security features, such as 2FA and KBA. This software tool provides best in class e-signature software with some amazing out-of-the-box features.
Don’t Miss Any Important Leads
Ever thought about losing out on important emails that could potentially attract leads? If yes, then Yesware is the answer you are looking for.
With Yesware, you can more effectively stay on top of all lead communications. As part of this software tool, features like tracking and managing emails instantly become simpler. You can create exceptional templates and enable multi-touch campaigns. You can also schedule emails and book meetings/appointments from a single place. An interesting capability of the tool is that it also allows sync with LinkedIn Sales Navigator and Salesforce programs.
More Savings and Better Profits
(Image Source: houzeo.com)
One of the most challenging factors in the real estate business is to simplify the process of selling and buying. Another key factor that sellers worry about is the commission fee they have to fish out. On average, a seller pays a 3% commission fee to the listing agent and around the same percentage to the buyer agent. Though you cannot ignore the commissions, there is a way around the problem.
A positive thing to note is that the real estate commissions have started to decline due to the competition in the flat fee MLS world. So, if you really want to save on commissions, try Flat Fee MLS listing service with vendors like Houzeo. Houzeo exposes your listing on the MLS and other real estate giants like Zillow, Realtor.com, Trulia, and many more at an affordable price. With Houzeo, you can save thousands of dollars in the listing agent commission and possibly the buyer agent commission as well considering the flexibility the platform provides. Houzeo is also regarded as one of the best For Sale By Owner websites with 100% online process capability.
Houzeo provides an exquisite seller dashboard that makes the management of listings easier. The platform also comes with a state-of-the-art app that makes you review, compare, and submit offers.
Additionally, Houzeo can help with the offer process. Just like reviewing and comparing home selling offers is important, it is equally important to submit and counter offer to settle and close the property purchase deal. Once submitted by a buyer, a counter offer can be initiated by either seller or buyer as needed; these tools can be of great help as they can reduce the settlement time, which otherwise would often require manual intervention.
Houzeo, exclusively offers the capability to counter offer in addition to submitting the initial offer. Both sellers and buyers can directly communicate when counter offers are submitted on Houzeo, thus automating the process and removing any manual roadblocks.
Overall, Houzeo is one of the best-rated Flat Fee MLS listing providers.
Considering the post-pandemic world, it would not be wrong to say that every decision, whether small or big, often relies heavily on virtual reality. Whether it is shopping for a t-shirt or buying a house, high-quality pictures and videos are what people seek to make a calculated decision.
Virtual reality platforms like Matterport allow home buyers to make more informed decisions remotely. Matterport gives an extra edge over other similar platforms by providing a detailed floor plans to enhance the buyer experience and add to the home portfolio. This could be really important for some buyers who are not satisfied with just the videos and pictures of the property.
Enhancing the Buying and Selling Experience With Graphics and Flyers
Canva is probably the most popular graphics and illustration tool in the real estate market today. This software has all the necessary designs and templates to create amazing campaigns and social media posts. The tool, in a nutshell, helps with real estate marketing and simplifies the process so practically anyone can use it easily.
Canva encompasses drag and drop features, media export options, various styles, background options, and much more, allowing you to easily create real estate flyers and postcards to market your property. Similarly, you can also work on email templates and social media banners to aid you in the process of selling homes online.
(Image source: Houzeo)
Scheduling a visit for buyers is one of the important factors in selling your home. A common issue experienced is that once your property gets listed, you will generally get multiple showing queries fast. If you are not on top of things, this may lead to chaos or missed showings.
Houzeo provides the ability to manage agent showings and schedule them. Sellers can opt for a specific plan and pay a nominal amount for this feature with this realty platform. When using the software, the seller can then easily fix time slots for different showings. Additionally, buyers can select a particular time slot which would be intimated to the seller who can take a call accordingly. These processes are uniquely automated on Houzeo for optimal showing organization.
The aforementioned tools can help sellers reduce the house selling burden as everything is digitally available and there is minimal manual intervention. While the pandemic introduced further use of helpful software and technology out of necessity, it has further pushed the realty and many other industries into the right direction with important updates. The way realtors conduct business has forever been changed for the good, providing endless opportunities for both buyers and sellers.6