It’s all fun and games…until it’s not! Contrary to the popular belief that virtual reality is only used in gaming, the technology is thriving in the property market. The power of virtual reality is really coming through, and it is truly fascinating! Continue reading to find out the main ways this form of technology is leaving its mark in the property market.

Virtual Tours

Normally, estate agents would provide potential buyers with floor plans, photos, drawings and even 3-D models of houses. However, that is an extremely time consuming and boring process. Even more so if the client lives abroad or wishes to buy a property overseas. Virtual reality interrupted the property market in a positive attempt to change this with virtual tours.

From the comfort of your own home or office, you can wear a virtual reality headset and simply explore the space you’re thinking of buying. It’s simple, yet effective. Buyers can easily get to know the new space. They don’t have to re-imagine a floor plan or look past someone else’s furniture. Yes, this is also achievable with pictures, however, with virtual reality it is easier to sense the flow of the home, as you can walk from one room to another. Additionally, with pictures sellers can choose what is captured on the frame, whereas with virtual reality you’re free to explore every nook and cranny!

Also, with virtual reality, it is easier for the buyer to picture themselves and their furniture inside a property. By being able to walk around and take in their potential new space, they can form a bond with the property, taking a lot of work from the estate agents’ shoulders and creating a better experience for the consumer!

You can see it in action in the video below!

Virtual Staging

A very important part of buying or selling a property is understanding what the space can become. Virtual staging is simply the process of digitally decorating a space. This is by far my favourite benefit of virtual reality, not only because it gives me hours of entertainment pretending I’m an interior designer, but because it lets the buyer explore their options before committing to a property. In other words, a buyer can feel like the owner of the property before even stepping foot in it!

Buyers that are looking to downsize might struggle to try to comprehend their new space. However, with virtual staging, they can insert different storage units and see them in their new space. On the other hand, buyers looking to buy a bigger property might not know what to do with their added square metres, so digitally customizing a space might just be their best idea.

Furthermore, let me add this feature is not only useful for people moving properties, but for couples looking to redesign their space. In this case, virtual reality can help them visualize what new furniture would look like in a matter of minutes, potentially saving them from countless arguments!

If you’d like to try virtual staging click here!

Architectural Renderings

As a kid, I always asked my mum why people invest in buildings that haven’t been built. I just didn’t understand, what if they didn’t turn out as expected?

Virtual reality has made architectural visualitsation much easier, for the architect, the estate agent, the buyer and everyone else involved!

This a powerful tool to be able to sell a space before it is built, and it allows for ease of review. Architects can revise the design and avoid that dreaded “It didn’t turn out as expected” statement. It permits a more realistic vision and opens space for cooperation. An architect and an engineer can use the software to explain each others’ needs and visualisations in a more clear manner, which will allow them to identify and modify aspects of the project before it is put under the hammer. Needless to say, it also saves a significant amount of time.

Even though this innovative tool is useful, it hasn’t been adopted by all major architects. However, when this method becomes more common and architects achieve extreme high-quality virtual images, the line between the real and the virtual will be blurred. I predict this will cause an increase in unbuilt property sales, and if you didn’t know…Off-plan properties are cheaper! What effect do you think this will have?

Enscape is one of the first companies to fully incorporate virtual reality, and a handful of experts have given their testimonies about it!

Virtual Communication

Previously, I wrote a post about online estate agents. Here, I mentioned how convenience is one of the key benefits of using said service. Virtual reality is here to make it better.

The property market involves a lot of communication. It is necessary. Now, imagine skipping the emails, phone calls, and countless google searches to have a face-to-face conversation with an expert from the comfort of your sofa…except, they’re not on your sofa! Yes, it is possible. Virtual reality has the potential to enable buyers/sellers to speak to anyone involved in the process “in person”. Therefore achieving the effectiveness of face-to-face communication, without it!

Professor and founding director of Stanford’s Virtual Human Interaction Lab, Jeremy Bailenson, stated that “VR takes all the gadgets away, it takes all the multitasking away and you actually feel like you’re with someone. We call this social presence — you see their emotions, you see their gestures and it feels just like you’re in the room with them. It takes what is typically seen as something that’s unemotional and distant and makes it feel like somebody’s right there with you.”

I am aware most people do not own a virtual reality headset. However, in a fast growing technological environment, it might just be the next big thing! Many estate agents offer this service with their own virtual reality headsets, saving petrol and valuable time. The impact it has had on the property market is beyond this list. Apart from saving time and money, this technology increases productivity, interest and offers a global reach for the market! It’s a solution many realtors should look to implement.
Even more so, the property market could potentially expand and increase their profitability by partnering with furniture companies. Additionally, virtual reality can also be applied to gardens and garages. The possibilities are many!
I don’t know about you, but I’m feeling it!
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