What’s New In PropTech

You won’t believe some of the things that are happening in the world of property technology.

The first Australian Property Technology Summit was held from 5-7 September in Sydney. 34 speakers from around the world addressed an audience of industry representatives, property enthusiasts, investors, and technology experts on the changing aspects of the property industry.

Chris Rolls, Managing Director of PieLAB Venture Partners was one of the keynote speakers and addressed the event on the evolving landscape of property technology in the region and brought back some interesting insights on what is happening in proptech not just in Australia but around the world. Here are some of them:

There’s a good chance your real estate office will be operating out of coworking space in the near future…

Coworking space is fast becoming the first choice (as opposed to a last resort) for forward thinking businesses when it comes to where their business will be operated from. And it’s not just small and medium businesses driving the demand. Amongst increasing competition for top talent, banks, mining companies, and global technology organisations like Google, are looking to coworking space as a means to provide staff with top shelf perks while sharing the cost of delivery with other businesses.

A PWC report predicts that co-working space will account for 30% of all commercial working space by 2030. A big prediction when you consider Australia’s coworking space accounts for less than 1% currently. However, this is not unrealistic when you consider how far behind Australia is. Globally coworking space makes up 5% of all workspace, and in London the figure is already at 8%.

Australia’s largest coworking space provider Hub Australia says that 50% of their clients have more than 15 employees. So, the next time you think about fitting out a real estate office, ask yourself if your team would like coffee served at their desks, an in-house gym, ironing service, and concierge to run their errands, and if the answer is yes, consider coworking space as an option.

Would FREE electricity be attractive to buyers and renters in the future.

Did you know that at certain times of the day, electricity is not just free but negative in price?Yes, that’s right, the wholesale cost of electricity is less than zero essentially meaning wholesalers will pay you to use it. According to Kyle Bolto, CEO of Symbiot, a proptech business specialising in the smart use of electricity by tapping into the wholesale rates of electricity and using artificial intelligence and algorithms to turn household appliances on and off throughout the day, you can cut your energy bill by 40%, more than the saving you’ll get from expensive solar panels for a fraction of the cost.

For example, imagine your home learned when you use hot water, and turned off the production of hot water when you were away on holidays, or when you are unlikely to have a shower. Picture a scenario when the price of electricity hits zero, and your home automatically takes advantage of this and switches on your pool pump. This is what Symbiot’s technology does. They even have software that integrates with your AirBnB calendar so when your guests leave your AirBnB holiday rental, Simbiot turns off all energy usage and starts it automatically for when the next guests move in a week later.

FREE Property management is already being trialled here in Australia.

If you own a real estate business, you know that there is downward pressure on fees in both property management and sales. Organisations with discounted models are partly to blame as well as increased competition. On the property management side of the business, there is increasing competition from low cost technology enabled property management providers. What you may not be aware of is that one of these is trialling a FREE property management service. They have specifically been asked not to be named, and the free service comes with some catches but fundamentally it is a no cost property management offering in the marketplace right now.

So, if there has ever been a time to introduce technology to drive efficiencies, reduce costs generally and start generating income from other sources of revenue, now is the time to get started.

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