In all sectors of the economy, business stakeholders have become aware of the necessity to analyze and run their enterprises efficiently and sustainably. Nowhere has this been more evident than in multifamily property management. The pandemic abruptly forced owners and operators of apartment communities to lean into technology and develop workable solutions in real-time to provide safe customer service to tenants under extreme circumstances. Potential tenants touring apartments and signing leases, as well as management staff responsible for maintaining daily operations adopted virtual reality through phone apps, chatbots, document sharing, and digital interfaces. Although we saw a surge of capital investment in proptech during COVID-19 that has since leveled off, the technology is not going anywhere. In fact, there is an increasing consumer desire for the convenience and customization that tech solutions can afford in property management. A 2019 NAA (National Apartment Association) survey found that 84% of respondents who did not have smart home tech wished they did.
Let’s dive into the current use of AI and proptech in property management, its impact on the bottom line, and the concerns facing smaller and medium-sized residential owners.
Democratizing Data For The Built Environment
According to Market US’s “Global Smart Buildings Market” forecast for 2022-2032, the market for smart technologies and computer vision solutions for real estate is expected to grow by about 183.8% over the course of a decade, with a sustained Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 15.8%. These newest technologies have revolutionized reporting, which can generate limitless amounts of data. Data-driven decisions have improved customer experience, provided marketing intelligence, and driven operations and management efficiencies. AI and smart systems have taken property management to the next level, redefining the expected standards.
Still, there are concerns, particularly among smaller property owners who are uneasy about the upfront costs. They want to make sure that the investment is worth the outcome. The significant capital investment is a potential barrier for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and discourages investment. Additionally, these more expensive technology solutions may need to integrate with legacy systems already in place. What is needed is the flexibility of proptech and platforms to cater to smaller entities and investors.
ApartmentBuildings.com is a platform catering to SMEs. It provides an equitable user experience to shop, save, and explore inventory and a roster of commercial real estate professionals who can help investors meet their needs and tailor feasible solutions and services.
Smart Buildings Market
According to Market.US, North America, which includes the U.S. and Canada, is currently dominating the global smart building market, and the U.S. is expected to continue to lead in the commercial segment. Factors driving this growth include an increased demand for energy-efficient buildings. Advanced HVAC, lighting, elevators, and energy management systems can reduce energy consumption and lower operating costs.
AI video analytics can enhance tenant safety and the safety of those visiting the property. Smartphone app integrations can let in the dog walker when the tenant is at work, track package delivery, and schedule maintenance repairs. These time-consuming tasks can be relieved from staff, streamlining operations. Smart access control technology can regulate access to amenities, parking, and other access points in the community. These cellular-based systems are portable and not reliant on Wi-Fi or complex wiring, making them less cumbersome and costly.
Sustainability reporting is now compulsory for individuals and organizations responsible for managing and operating real estate portfolios. The industry is evolving and facing added government regulations and requirements. Thanks to trade media, conferences, and the Internet, there is a growing awareness of the benefits of smart building solutions in managing financial risk, operations, and tenant retention. Experts agree that ESG data analysis is the foundation for a long-term sustainability strategy. Often, small and medium-sized owners need help with how to proceed, and the task seems daunting. Increased guidance is needed for SMEs to learn how to analyze and choose innovative products and solutions through education opportunities and resources. The real estate proptech industry is highly competitive, with new players entering the market, but many target larger and established companies. These providers have an enormous opportunity to recognize and develop products for the valuable and largely untapped SME market. Property management solutions and services that can leverage existing systems and use tools like cloud-based mobile apps and smartphones can help SME multifamily owners and managers stay competitive and future-proof their communities for years to come.