What is PropTech?

PropTech is a newer term used to describe technology solutions geared towards disrupting the real estate sector. Other terms used to describe this type of technology solutions include CRE Tech, RealTech and ConTech. 

PropTech is very broad as it includes real estate, leasing, appraisals, residential property management, commercial property management, the sharing economy, smart cities/buildings, construction, RegTech and even FinTech. 

Within PropTech, companies are using innovative technology to change/enhance the existing ways of doing things and to address problems or gaps within the industry. These technology solutions are leveraging things like: 

  • Big data & analytics
  • Artificial Intelligence (AI)
  • Robotic automation
  • Digital capabilities
  • Internet of Things (IoT)
  • Virtual Reality (VR)
  • Payment/transaction/lending technology
  • Blockchain technology 

Some of the main areas that PropTech focuses on are: 
  • Building/asset performance, optimization and cost reduction
  • Tenant information
  • Listing and search
  • Decision making
  • Record management
  • Compliance & regulatory obligations
  • Monitoring risk
  • Speed and ease of processes
  • Automation
  • Payment/Transactions
  • Customer engagement
  • User experience
  • Creating value
  • Culture & talent 

Things to consider for PropTech solutions: 
  • Know what you are trying to achieve. Identify and be clear on your needs. 
  • Assess your digital strategy.
  • Determine how to use PropTech – i.e. building your own solutions, collaborating with vendors/startups etc.
  • Obtain buy-in for the solution.
  • Identify overlap or areas that should work together on the solution.
  • Socialize, train & implement thoroughly.
  • Select a solution that is agile and adaptable.

Resources and Interesting Reads: 

PropTech: What is it and how to address the new wave of real estate startups? Vincent Lecamus, Medium. 2017. https://medium.com/@vincentlecamus/proptech-what-is-it-and-how-to-address-the-new-wave-of-real-estate-startups-ae9bb52fb128 

The Beginner's Guide To Commercial Real Estate Tech: What Exactly Is PropTech? Champaign Williams, Forbes. 2017. https://www.forbes.com/sites/bisnow/2017/11/17/the-beginners-guide-to-commercial-real-estate-tech-what-exactly-is-proptech/#487083525239