The world of real estate is in a constant state of flux and change. From average housing prices shifting on a near-daily basis to new technological advancements giving us new ways to decide which house we should call home. However, one realm that people weren’t anticipating real estate to venture into is augmented reality.
Much has been said about the potential of this new technology, which began garnering mainstream interest in 2016 with apps like Pokemon Go entering the market. That said, practical uses of this technology have been mostly speculative until relatively recently. So, how can AR technology impact the real estate experience, and what benefits may it offer the real estate market?
What is Augmented Reality (AR)?
Augmented reality technology, as the name suggests, augments elements of the real world through computer-generated information. Unlike its counterpart, virtual reality, AR utilises the surrounding world in real time, rather than existing entirely within a virtual space.
One of the earliest practical uses of this technology (in regard to mainstream recognition) was IKEA Place; an interactive app that allowed users to see how products would look in their home before buying them. While we’re still yet to see many more uses of AR technology in retail, this furniture-placement experience was likely a strong influencing factor on real estate applications.
How Can We Use Augmented Reality in Real Estate?
As you can likely guess, especially if you have used the IKEA app mentioned previously, the main interest in augmented reality for real estate comes from its ability to visualise three-dimensional information. This allows potential homebuyers and builders to see a preview of their property that is far more detailed than the traditional two-dimensional variants.
Other benefits include:
Time and Resources
From the perspective of homebuyers, AR/VR technologies allow individuals to more thoroughly experience a property without stepping foot within it. While it’s still recommended that individuals view homes in person before applying, augmented reality in real estate gives homebuyers a more thorough overview, which allows them to filter out properties that don’t match their needs.
Additionally, from the perspective of real estate agents, augmented reality saves time that would otherwise be spent showing homes to applicants. Plus, similarly to home staging, it allows them to show an “idealised” version of the home in question, without the property owner having to spend thousands of dollars on additional decor.
Adding Tangibility to the Intangible
If you are unable to personally view a home for one reason or another, floor plans and documentation don’t necessarily provide a thorough understanding of a property. This can often lead to property purchases that either don’t live up to expectations or are simply not in line with the needs of the buyer.
By viewing a home through the lens of augmented reality, as well as working with an experienced property management company, you can get a far more tangible idea of how a home feels.
Augmented reality in real estate is still in its infancy, and there’s still a long way to go before it’s commonly used on a consumer level. However, with new technology and updates coming out regularly, there’s a lot to get excited about, and it will be fascinating to see where things go from here.
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