Being successful in the real estate business looks much different now than it did 30 years ago. Back then, you might cold call clients, go door-to-door, and work diligently to have face-to-face interactions. Now, like many businesses, real estate is digital. Whether you’re a broker or an agent, the secret to success is the best real estate software. Using the right applications, you can streamline your lead process – from acquisition to closing.
There are four primary types of real estate software that agents and brokers use: CRM, ERP, management software, and applications that create VR tours. Let’s look at all four types and see how each one will make your real estate endeavor better!
Real Estate Software: Customer Relationship Management (CRM)
As the name implies, CRM software helps agents manage their relationships with clients. When you meet a new client, you’re going to learn more about them. You’ll get their contact data, some information about the home they want to buy, and learn more about their timeframe. Some people will contact you well before they’re ready to make a move because they want to understand the process better. Others will wait until the last possible minute and need to move ASAP.
With an online real estate management software CRM solution, you can put your client’s details in one central system. Then, all quality CRM solutions will let you:
- Manage that data: Add or delete contacts with ease. Update information and add notes as you learn more about their needs. When you call them up in the future, your clients will be pleasantly surprised by the fantastic memory!
- Automated lead nurturing: Quality CRM real estate software will nurture leads for you. These systems can send out emails with properties they might be interested in, handle auto-responding to incoming texts, and other aspects that move your leads from new to ready to buy or sell with you!
- Contract management system: You can store the details of your transaction securely and set reminders for deadlines. Is one of your client’s houses going to close in 15 days? No problem. Add it to your CRM, and this important milestone will be on your radar.
There are more features of CRM systems as well, but those are some of the most vital for real estate agents.
Popular CRM Systems
If you’re interested in these products, real estate brokers and agents in the industry commonly use these four solutions:
- HubSpot: This CRM solution is widespread across all sectors. While it isn’t real estate-specific, real estate brokerages use it because of its versatility and functionality.
- Zoho: Cheaper than HubSpot, Zoho is another popular choice for those in the real estate business. It’s not specific to real estate, but it has numerous plugins and features.
- Propertybase: Built on top of Salesforce, this package is fantastic for real estate agents. You can manage deals, forecast commissions, and even plan your day.
- Wise Agent: Another platform that targets real estate agents, Wise Agent comes with everything you need to connect and work with clients.
Without CRM software, keeping track of clients is tedious and slow. A CRM package should, arguably, be the first thing you get so you can be as responsive as possible to clients!
Enterprise Resource Planning Software
While the name may sound confusing at first, enterprise resource planning software manages day-to-day business activities. For example, ERP solutions can keep track of accounting, manage projects, and manage risk. Brokerages need this type of software to understand how their business is doing and handle aspects of the firm, like paying commissions and gaining insights into how each office performs.
Brokerages often use these two real estate brokerage accounting software solutions:
- BrokerMint: With a beautiful dashboard and the ability to have deep insights, BrokerMint is a popular pick amongst brokerages. You can assess your financial compliance, schedule activities, and stay up to date on essential metrics.
- Deskera: This ERP solution has significant financial capabilities. See detailed financial reports, reconcile accounts, handle legal matters, manage digital listings, and more with this multi-faceted solution.
The above real estate software handles vital tasks for agents. Most importantly, it lets people visualize how well their brokerage is doing and gain valuable insights to help it stay one step ahead of the competition!
Real Estate Management Software
Some real estate professionals need real estate management software. This type of software helps people who actively manage properties. If you are a property management firm, you need software that will do everyday tasks like:
- Accounting: See where your management company’s money is at all times!
- Rent payment processing: Whether you accept cash, check, ACH, or even credit card, you’re going to need an online real estate management software package that can handle it all for you.
- Manage tenants: quality online real estate management software should have the ability to create a tenant database. There you can sore all correspondence, decisions, renewals, and rent information. This functionality is vital to ensure legal compliance with all local ordinances.
If you’re in the market for this type of software, please consider the following three options:
- Buildium: This solution works well for property managers who need to handle accounting tasks and integrate with other tools. If you have a property management business, it’s hard to beat Buildium.
- Turbo Tenant: This software package has one significant advantage over the other ones – it’s free for landlords! With Turbo Tenant, you can market your rental, get applications online, screen tenants, and communicate efficiently. It’s truly a comprehensive solution.
- ResMan: Used by large companies with billions of dollars in assets, this software suite is a favorite for property managers. It handles almost everything, from accounting to compliance, and is a trustworthy solution for any property manager.
As a property manager, it’s hard to be effective without high-quality software. Fortunately, these packages will ensure your business is a success!
AR/VR Real Estate Software
AR (augmented reality) and VR (virtual reality) are similar but distinct concepts in computing. AR takes the real world and super-imposes virtual objects on top of it. For example, when you use Amazon’s “see it in your home” feature on your phone, you’re looking at AR. Virtual reality is similar, except that you immerse yourself entirely in the virtual world. VR headsets, like the Oculus Rift, surround your head so you cannot see anything but the screen in front of you. Quality VR experiences react to your movements so you can immerse yourself in the virtual world.
For real estate, AR and VR are essential for a few key reasons:
- New construction companies love VR to provide tours for their homes before the company builds them. People interested in the construction can get a sense of what they are buying before the builders ever lay the first brick.
- AR tools let prospective homeowners see what their furniture would look like in a place before buying it. If a real estate agent has a client who is worried that their bed will fit, for example, AR technology can help with that.
- Agents can use VR technology to give people virtual tours of homes if the client cannot drive there themselves (this has become especially important in light of COVID-19).
AR and VR real estate software is vital for brokers and agents alike.
Some Popular AR/VR Solutions
Three AR/VR providers are of particular interest to these real estate professionals.
- ClassVR: This company provides everything necessary to show clients a prospective home virtually. Whether you invite people over to your office to put on your headset or have one of their own, ClassVR will create memorable virtual experiences.
- FeelEstate: Create your custom 360-degree tour. This software enables measurements and password protection, so your buyers and sellers alike will have the features and peace of mind they need.
- immoviewer: This innovative VR software package lets prospective homebuyers view 3D 360-degree tours and floor plans. Prestigious brokers trust the developers behind this platform for an excellent reason – it has many features!
AR and VR tools are so crucial in today’s modern real estate brokerage. Buyers love the ability to see homes without having to attend in person. With this pandemic, it has become essential as many jurisdictions do not consider in-person home viewings to be safe.
How Will PropTech Change Real Estate?
Property technology (PropTech) will undoubtedly change the real estate business for good. For the most part, it will make it better. Your contacts, planning, property management, and tours will become more comfortable as you shift them to the online world. Buyers will love the convenience and “coolness” that agents will provide.
However, if you’re an agent or a brokerage, you should know that this change is underway. If you want to be competitive, you’re going to need real estate software from each of the categories mentioned above!