Integrated reporting and deal management is leading commercial real estate into a new realm of tech-enabled transactions and management. Commercial real estate has historically been very slow to change. For decades, information about assets, deals and markets has been fragmented and controlled by a small cadre of brokerages and institutional investors.
As is the case in many industries, tech is changing this, but there is considerable momentum for startups and newly established companies that are creating management, reporting and deal platforms that streamline the revenue generation process for owners, brokers and tenants.
Information is at our fingertips
Leading-edge technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning and the Internet of Things (IOT) have transformed data gathering and analysis in multiple industries. Despite CRE being a late adopter, many real estate tech companies are using these technologies to modify the way brokers, developers, asset managers and property managers work.
The IOT is making operations far more intelligent. Sensors can now be placed at multiple points to track HVAC, electric and water demand, along with monitoring occupancy patterns and base load demand. All of these monitoring points are easily accessible through dashboards on PCs and smart devices. Recent advancements have also helped building operations staffs with startup and shutdown protocols through remote equipment monitoring.
For asset managers, the ability to assess repair and operations needs through IOT streamlines the budgeting and requisition process. In the past, building staff would have needed to perform a physical inspection and rely on service personnel to assess the condition of equipment like chillers, boilers and air handlers.
Two transformative innovations for the industry are AR and VR technologies. Augmented and virtual reality allows investors and contractors to see accurate property details remotely. This can reduce travel requirements and increase the accuracy of construction take-offs and bids. For investors, the use of AR and VR expands their opportunity horizons in terms of being able to screen properties remotely.
AR and VR can also be used to conduct virtual property tours for prospects that are unable to conduct an on-site tour. From site visits to document automation, technology is compressing the deal cycle. VR tools have made it possible to create three-dimensional space plans that can generate interest for tenants and allow brokers to focus their time on serious prospects.
There are numerous repetitive processes and tasks inherent to CRE operations. These include lease and proposal generation, vendor contracts, and purchase and sale agreements. AI and machine learning are being used to refine documents over time and reduce the amount of human input required for various types of agreements, including partnership documents and leases.
Remote monitoring of assets allows managers and agents to provide property access without physically being present. If there is interest in moving on to a lease, a proposal can be auto generated and followed up by a lease.
Repetitive tasks that once required the manual execution of multiple documents and one or more in-person meetings are being supported by online tools and smart devices. AI for commercial real estate is making an impact on the search for space, and even in the realm of lease negotiations.
Leveling the playing field for regional firms
Unlike large national firms, Berger Commercial Realty focuses exclusively on the South Florida markets. Technology has allowed all firms to access the same tools as the larger firms. This is particularly important with regard to informing owners and tenants about competitive scenarios and real-time analytics that inform lease and purchase decisions. It is no longer necessary to have dedicated internal research teams to have access to highly accurate data that can improve efficiency and effectiveness. The differentiator is how the data is interpreted and utilized in servicing the client.
About Berger Commercial Realty/CORFAC International
Berger Commercial Realty/CORFAC International is a regional, full service commercial real estate firm based in South Florida. Independent and privately owned since its founding in 1998, the firm is a member of CORFAC International, a global network of independently-owned commercial real estate brokerage firms. The firm’s property management and brokerage services include tenant/landlord and buyer/seller representation; project and construction management; receiverships; agency/project leasing; capital advisory/investment sales; retail services and more. For more information, visit www.bergercommercial.com.
About CORFAC International
CORFAC International (Corporate Facility Advisors) is comprised of privately held entrepreneurial firms with expertise in office, industrial and retail real estate leasing and investment sales, multifamily property acquisitions and dispositions, property management and corporate services. In association with global affiliates, CORFAC International has 60 North American offices and 20 offices in global markets. Founded in 1989, CORFAC firms completed more than 11,000 lease and sales transactions totaling approximately 500 million square feet of space valued in excess of $8.5 billion in 2015. For more information on the CORFAC network, call 224.257.4400 or visit www.corfac.com.