Wouldn’t it be nice if we had a crystal ball that could predict the future of the real estate market? It would definitely make investing a lot easier! Alas, none of us can say with certainty what will happen in the coming years, or even the coming months or days. However, analysts and others have become pretty darn good at guessing what’s in store for the future, and right now, there’s talk of some big changes headed our way in the next 10 years.
No More Real Estate Agents
I read recently that a study by Oxford University predicted that artificial intelligence would soon make the role played by real estate agents unnecessary. For decades, agents have been the trusted advisor and go-between of buyers and sellers, but with technology advancing as it has, it seems like more and more people are taking the DIY route. Buyers are finding their own properties, and sellers are listing their homes – and selling them – without agents. While agents have worked to evolve and adapt to these changes, there is still a lot of uncertainty regarding the future of this profession.
Flat Fee Brokerage Services
This one piggybacks on the prediction of agents becoming obsolete. As more people ditch agents, they’re going to have to find brokerage services to handle various aspects of the home buying/selling process. Enter flat fee brokerages. Several companies have emerged offering service packages that can range from $400 to $1,000 or more and include things like MLS listings, funds verifications, background checks, sales contracts, and more. If real estate agents do become a thing of the past, these brokerage services are going to explode in popularity.
Here’s an idea that’s seen some traction lately and is predicted to expand. What if tenants were able to bid on your rental property, setting their own prices, with the winning bid scoring the lease? I hear this and I see dollar signs. Right now, rental fees are set according to market rates, so there’s not a lot of flexibility. But a place that’s worth $1,000 to one person might be worth $1,200 to another, due to any number of reasons. Maybe it’s close to their family, or their job, or maybe they love that unique feature you added. Whatever the reason, why set the rent at a fixed rate when there are people out there willing to pay more?
Virtual Reality for Remote Investors
Remember when virtual reality was this crazy space-age idea that only scientists and the super rich got to play around with it? Not anymore. VR is now being seen all over the place, including during the home-buying process. Instead of having to be physically present to walk through a prospective investment, what if you could simply transport yourself there through ultra-realistic virtual reality software? This would make remote investing even easier than it already is, and according to industry insiders, we’re going to see more and more of this technology being used in real estate development and sales.
Real estate is a continually changing industry, and as technology improves and people become more adept at handling things themselves, we’re going to see major changes. These are just a few of the changes predicted to come our way in the next decade, and if realized, the question then becomes, “Are you ready for it?”