Back ‘Now’ PropTech – Some property managers are already seeing the benefits of technology, more will follow
Geoff Parsons, Strategic Partnerships Manager at Demand Logic talks about how some property managers are already making use of PropTech.
The real estate industry is beginning to acknowledge the benefits that certain technology can bring, but it isn’t always sure how and when to adopt it. This quickly became apparent last year where broader ‘PropTech’ conversations steadily shifted away from the hype and pomp onto much more serious discussions about adoption. For some the answer is a robust and systematic structural change, alongside new strategic budgets which are designed specifically to fund technology solutions. However, for those who work in smaller firms or possibly sit further away from the big decision makers the answer is less clear. This is particularly apparent for younger real estate professionals who are more likely to see the advantage of tech but do not feel like they are in a position to embrace it. I should know, I used to be one of those young professionals! The answer is to not just rely on high level decisions but to also identify the practical steps that can be taken by individuals right now and so that a higher level of service can be delivered to clients sooner.
One part of the industry which is capable of embracing technology right now is property management which coincidently needs it more than ever. Property management is approaching a moment of radical structural change but space-as-a-service and the need for urgent carbon reduction is already placing fresh demands on a property managers desk. These are both areas where new solutions can not only make a positive impact, but also relieve some of the pressure faced by them. Thankfully an individual property manager does have the ability to adopt new tech solutions when they are managing a property with a service charge budget.
A service charge will contain costs for services that directly benefit the tenants and which the landlord has had to pay for in the first instance. The use of service charge funds is regulated by the RICS, and rightfully so, but we shouldn’t dismiss its use to fund more modern services. With appropriate communication and transparency tenants may agree to contribute towards an appropriate technology solution which benefits them. Consequently the service charge could be a way to enable a tech driven space-as-a-service offering. Property managers are therefore in a rather fortunate position where they can procure new tech solutions with relative agility.
At Demand Logic we provide a service which is being used by property managers today. We use existing data sets within a buildings hard services to increase comfort, improve maintenance and save energy. In many cases these are benefits which directly affect those occupying a building. The Demand Logic service typically runs through the service charge and provides an ROI within a year meaning we are also service charge neutral. Landlords and property managers then benefit by reporting a reduction in the performance gap (which needs to be eliminated in order to go net zero) and by improving their space-as-a-service sell.
We are very excited to be part of Future PropTech 2020 in October where we will be showcasing how Demand Logic are being used right now by the biggest players in the industry. Come for a chat if you would like to know more!