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The market may be taking a breather, but we’re not

 

Each and every year we see advances in real estate and PropTech, but the last few years really broke the mold. We saw such a strong need for industry innovation and adaption during the pandemic, which meant many had to act fast and assess later.

And while this year did see a slow start in comparison, I am elated to see a coming together within real estate and PropTech, with people and businesses working side-by-side to solve industry-wide problems.

This is a clear reflection of how the landscape has changed, and how we’ve adapted based on what our industries needed. The current environment has left more room—and led to more necessity—for collaboration, whether that be funding innovations or sharing data, resources, and information to solve industry problems.

Opportunity awaits—especially in this market

The market has slowed in recent months—that’s not news to anyone. But that doesn’t mean that we have to follow suit. In fact, the current environment has presented an opportunity to look forward and think about where we see opportunity, and how we can build a better tomorrow.

There is truly so much room to grow—most notably, to enhance processes so we can ensure that when volume returns, the market can respond in a way that is more anticipatory.

That’s why it’s so important to look at the market holistically, even–and especially—when it is moving at a slower pace. We can’t internalize the current conditions and let them cloud our future focus, we need to look for the pockets of opportunity they present. We need to look back on the past year and think about where we saw success when the market was more active and leverage those insights to improve our approach moving forward.

Sometimes it takes meaningful events or major changes to highlight what can be changed for the better. The pandemic has taught us that we need more efficiency at all levels, and now is the time to build processes that accommodate and prepare us for busier environments.

Technology is step two of the solution—not step one

We often assume technology is the solution to everything. And while it has played a major role in refining processes in real estate and many other industries, smart and honest decisions have to come first. It is so important to start by looking at the current process and ask…do we really need to do this? What can we eliminate? How can this be more streamlined?

Only after those questions have been asked can technology come in. The role of technology is not to make decisions for us but to help solve the problems we cannot eliminate.

It’s also important to note that these solutions aren’t always what you’d expect—and they’re not always fully dependent on technology. For example, title insurance plays a unique role in eliminating steps in a real estate transaction and helps protect stakeholders from potential risks.

Onwards and upwards—there’s still work to be done

While there is opportunity awaiting in today’s environment, that does not mean it’s time to let our guard down. We need to remain aware and realistic, as there are many problems that we simply can’t solve right away—like fraud.

The heightened market over the past few years brought an increase in fraud instances, and that’s something that isn’t going to go away overnight. It’s going to take hard work and collaboration to solve these sorts of problems, which is why it’s more important than ever that we come together to share data, information and experiences so we can better assess and manage fraud and other industry risks.

We’ve certainly come a long way in recognizing fraud as a problem, but there is still work to be done within the industry to encourage and engage in real problem-solving conversations. However, once again, there is a clear opportunity here to work together. It’s time to collaborate.

A more connected future—for consumers and our industry

Looking ahead, I genuinely believe the best is yet to come. I’m very excited about advancing the digital real estate environment and moving towards a more connected real estate transaction. The marketplace is ready for it, and the pieces are already being developed in the PropTech and fintech spaces.

One of the top priorities for FCT and our partners in 2023 will be continuing to put the puzzle together to create an ecosystem that not only benefits the consumer, but all the key players within it. We know the process needs to be less complicated and consumers need access to an environment with more assurance around their ability to finance the full transaction, right at the outset. This is just one example of what a more collaborative industry could accomplish.

There is an abundance of opportunity here for us all to work together to develop a more connected future in real estate. I can’t wait to see where we go from here—the sky truly is the limit.

 

 

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