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Keeping it Real – How Technology Can Change the Face of the Australian Real Estate Industry

Two Dam Creative

 

Few industries have experienced as much change and upheaval in Australia as the property market. Here’s just a snapshot of the more pressing issues that are impacting this $11 Billion per annum industry:

 

  • The Influx of overseas buyers flooding the market and pushing prices up and locals out, along with regulations to control this phenomenon.
  • Legislation to tackle the chronic practice of underquoting on property prices prior to auction or sale.
  • The rise of negative gearing as a major potentially election-deciding political issue.
  • A looming fight over enterprising investors purchasing apartments to rent out through Airbnb and other online hospitality marketplaces.

 

 

 

All of this and much more is occurring against the backdrop of a resurgent boom in housing prices that shows little sign of slowing. Median property prices in Sydney and Melbourne have seen double-digit percentage increases, topping $1.15 million and $840 thousand respectively. In Melbourne, that’s an increase of $110,000 in 12 months, and almost 150% on ten years ago. This stratospheric rise in the cost of homes has had a profound effect on the market, making housing unaffordable for large swathes of the population. Many families are reconciling themselves to the reality of perpetual renting as the universal dream of home ownership rapidly evaporates before their eyes.

 

Agents of Change

All this tumult is having a powerful effect on the business of real estate. Rising house prices may deliver a windfall for agents via increased fees. Conversely, already squeezed buyers can frequently ill afford the additional cost of buyers’ agents or advocates and are looking for alternatives that will allow them to put every penny directly into their properties to maximise the chances of breaking into the market. Vendors, on the other hand, are more than happy to avoid agents’ fees if they can. Fortunately for vendors, but not so happily for agents, there is a major player in the industry that is more than happy to make that happen

 

Caught in the Web

The digital revolution has radically altered virtually every facet of modern life, and the real estate industry is no exception. Online property search sites such as Realestate.com and Domain have shaken up the status quo and become indispensable tools for home buyers and sellers. Australians are quicker on the uptake than virtually anywhere else. In the USA, 44% of house seekers use online tools as their primary resource of information. In Australia, that figure is a staggering 86%. Realestate.com alone receives well in excess of three million hits per month to their website. With an audience so hyper-engaged with technology, it is no wonder that the industry is gravitating so emphatically to the internet to keep up with a rapidly evolving landscape.

 

Gaining Mobility

The website visit numbers, however, do not tell the whole story. The intriguing piece of the digital puzzle is that over 50% of users are accessing online resources via their mobile devices. To give you some idea of the role that mobile plays in the industry: the two most prominent mobile applications for real estate have been collectively downloaded over ten million times. In a country of 24 million people, even accounting for multiple downloads, that figure almost defies comprehension. It equates to more than one download for every man and woman aged between 25-55 in this country. Quite the feat. If nothing else, this illustrates the enormous opportunity that exists for new technologies in the real estate space.

 

 

Appsolutely Fabulous

Numerous factors make the real estate market an app developer’s dream:

  1. House hunters are on the move. Your mobile device is the only viable option when you’re spending weekends flitting between auctions, open houses and inspections.
  2. Everything is location based. Your phone or tablet’s location tracking capability opens a whole world of location-based data feed opportunities to potentially integrate into an application.
  3. House hunting is an iterative process. Every property you visit provides more information about what you are looking for and where you are looking for it.

 

This is by no means an exhaustive list. However, the digitally minded amongst you should already be cluing into the fact that these and other factors lend themselves particularly well to utilising artificial intelligence and machine learning to deliver tailored mobile solutions to a hungry, captive market.

 

All this has got us exceptionally intrigued and fired up at 2 Dam Creative. With such economic and technological opportunity still to be tapped, we believe that the ingredients are all there for the right idea to make a big splash.

 

If you’ve got a real estate related app concept that you’d like to discuss, we’d love to talk to you. Our experienced team have the skills and know-how to help you make it a reality.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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