VR technology comes to mind when discussing recent innovations in the game development and film industry. However, it also proved highly beneficial in the real estate sphere, creating a controlled environment to present goods existing only on the stage of ideas. Technology like VR home tours from Visengine helps in overcoming current pandemic challenges and moves the industry forward.
Traditionally, the real estate sphere includes a lot of human-to-human interactions. In the case of buying, the agent discusses details with the client, draws up a list of potential properties to show, and starts an endless row visiting and evaluating various apartments and houses. If selling, the same process is in action, but sellers are dragged into constant negotiations with possible buyers instead of visiting others. Of course, we describe the process in dark colors, but reality doesn't give much place for a better description. Dealings in the real estate sphere can be tiresome and take a considerable amount of time with no sure guarantee of profit.
VR widens possibilities because it provides solutions for survival in times of the pandemic. The National Association of Realtors 2020 study says that 93% of buyers used websites in their home search, and more than half of them chose to buy a house they've found online. Movement restrictions and quarantine requirements force agents and landlords to look for different ways to interrogate clients and architects to present their projects in a much more persuasive way.
The article covers five directions in which Virtual Reality creates opportunities for the real estate business.
Direction 1. Visual Tours for distant showcases
You don't always want to buy a house standing right opposite your current one. The distance between today's residing place and a dreamt region creates challenges. Clients may be interested in purchasing a property outside of their state, or on the other part of the country, or even abroad on some distant island with a limited population and lots of free space. However, real-life visits seem impossible to accomplish when the distance to the possible new houses rises. VR technology helps to review all variants and creates a real-life experience.
Moreover, due to the pandemic, traveling became much more complicated. Clients may visit several sites in the near region, but quarantine regulations and rising traveling costs won't let them accomplish more. That's why virtual reality is an excellent solution for choosing a new home without leaving a safe environment.
Agents use 3D virtual tours to present the property in two ways:
A video of a tour
With the advance of technology, they start to take different shapes, but in short, it is a video of the property. A client may wear a VR headset and get a prerecorded tour around the amenities. Another variant is a 360-degree video, where the client also wears the headset but stands in one place and can look around. These kinds are often mixed, but all carry one same characteristic - the client follows a prerecorded path without a possibility to change the environment. Such video doesn't need programming, only a panoramic camera for filming and a VR headset.
A program for an interactive visit
With such a program, the client visits property recreated in virtual reality. An example of this type is a street-view in Google or an online tour in the museum, where you can move by clicking on the hotspots around you. This technology allows clients to interact with the property directly and creates a more private experience.
Direction 2. Comparing various offers at the same time
Impressions from visiting different houses mix into one pile, which complicates the future choice. However, digital house reviewing allows people to check various places quickly and compare them to find the best one. Such platforms as Zillow have a base of multiple offers, each of which has a 3D guided tour to represent the property.
Direction 3. Furnishing in Virtual Reality
Staging plays a vital role in selling the property. Empty rooms leave a place for imagination, but a fully-furnished apartment creates an image of a ready-to-live-in home. However, staging costs remarkably, and depending on the property's size and level, the price may be higher than 10 thousand dollars. Such expenses become over the top because they need to be covered by the seller or the estate agent.
Virtual staging reduces costs and possible inconveniences of furniture choice. Companies like roomy that specialize in digital solutions add furniture to the photos of vacant rooms or stages inside of the house in Virtual Reality.
Direction 4. Visualization for architectural projects
Before constructing a building, the idea must be approved and invested in. With the pandemic and overall decrease in free money flow, investors take much more time to evaluate the project's profitability. In the past, 2D plans showed quite dreamy images of future buildings, but with Virtual Reality, you can recreate a transparent and solid view of the construction.
Moreover, VR also reduces costs in showing the interior of the project. Instead of creating a full-sized apartment room model, architects and real estate agents are free to implement their ideas in Virtual Reality. Furthermore, clients and investors get a far more immersive experience.
Direction 5. Simplified communication between landlords and tenants
In a renting business, explaining to clients all the details of an apartment for a weekend swallows a catastrophic amount of time. Landlords need to always stay accessible to answer questions concerning various issues, from hot water problems to keys loss. If a business orients on a high turnover level, explaining the same points to each new client is a massive waste of resources.
Instead, Landlords can create a 3D tour of facilities and allow tenants to become accustomed to the environment during the tour. It provides more efficient and much less troublesome communication.
Virtual Reality is a solution to keep the costs down for sellers and provide an immersive experience to customers. Every estate agent can easily manage to create a 360-degree video and different digital firms are ready to create any other form of VR representations. The next step is to learn more about the innovations and apply them for your benefit.