In real estate management, the only thing that changes faster than the real estate industry is real estate technology. Whether you’re a realtor or a real estate business owner, there are thousands of tools available to help streamline your workflows and allow you to complete your daily tasks more easily.
Here’s a list of some of our favorite real estate tools.
1. Digital Camera
Real estate field inspections are important to document the condition of a property, but traditional inspections are not practical because they are time-consuming and inefficient.
For this reason, digital field inspection technology is quickly becoming the industry standard for systematic field documentation. With it, images can be taken with a cell phone or tablet just minutes after the inspection.
One of the best field inspection tools is a digital camera. Digital cameras can capture images and information about a property, including:
- Structural integrity and damage (i.e., drywall cracks, water stains)
- Appliances (i.e., dishwasher, stove), piping (i.e., gas lines), electricity (i.e., outlets, fuses), and HVAC (i.e., air-conditioning)
- Plumbing (i.e., water pressure, wastewater)
- Floors (i.e., stains, damage)
- Walls (i.e., cracks, peeling paint, or wallpaper)
Digital field inspection technology is an efficient way for inspectors to update their company’s software programs with data. This technology also allows them to take photographs of property conditions and upload them to a central database accessible by the entire organization, no matter the branch or office location.
Drones — small unmanned aircraft that typically fit in the palm of a hand and are equipped with cameras or other field inspection technology — can greatly enhance real estate management by providing a safe and cost-effective alternative to traditional inspections. Drones include:
- Quadcopters, which have four propellers and can take off and land vertically
- Tricopters, which have three propellers and can take off and land vertically
- Fixed-wing drones, which are heavier than quadcopters or tricopters but do not require a runway to take off
- Hybrid fixed-blad drones, which can switch between vertical takeoff/landing (VTOL) and fixed-wing flight
Drones can be equipped with field inspection technology, including infrared sensors, to document structural issues within a property at a low cost. Drones can take off and land vertically in tight spaces, allowing field inspectors to get into hard-to-reach places that might not be accessible on foot.
3. Video Inspection Tools
When real estate inspections are being used to monitor the progress of a construction project, inspectors typically have two options for recording field data: traditional field inspection reports or video recording. A video field inspection includes:
- Garage door opener trigger camera, which captures video footage at the garage door and sends it to field inspectors in real-time
- Web-based video field inspection program, which enables field inspectors to inspect a property remotely by uploading field data and photos from their computer or iPhone
- GoPro camera, which records field data in HD color video
4. Social Media
Social media is one of the real estate industry’s best tools because many real estate agents can build a following on social media use it as leverage for marketing. Here’s how brokers and agents can use social media tools for management:
- Real estate professionals can use social media tools to promote real estate listings.
- Social media sites such as Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter enable real estate agents to take high-quality photos of a property and post them online with a link to their listing page or real estate agency website.
- Social media sites also allow real estate professionals to stay up-to-date with industry news and connect with real estate experts, which can help real estate professionals stay informed about new real estate technology.
- Pinterest is an attractive real estate marketing tool because real estate agents can create boards filled with real estate listings, decorating ideas, and design inspiration.
- Real estate professionals can use social media tools to manage client relationships. Clients often turn to real estate agents for advice about which neighborhoods or schools are best suited for their children or families.
5. CRM Software
Customer relationship management (CRM) software manages real estate professionals’ interactions with customers in real-time, allowing real estate agents to generate high-quality leads and keep track of clients.
CRM software streamlines the real estate process by managing all communication between real estate agents and their clients through phone calls, e-mails, text messages, chats, and meetings in one place.
A real estate CRM becomes more valuable as real estate professionals add more customers to their database. Agents can access information about previous clients, including contact history, real estate transactions, property preferences, and buying motivations. This information enables real estate agents to personalize interactions with each client.
Using these technologies enables real estate professionals to complete real estate transactions faster, manage client relationships in real-time, track property performance with ease, and generate sales leads.