When people first conceived of using virtual reality, they thought it might be an excellent form of entertainment. Instead, VR technology has spread into a number of practical consumer industries, such as the buying and selling of real estate. VR and augmented reality, a similar technology that also aids in purchases, have the potential to dramatically overhaul the entire process of real estate marketing.
How Does Virtual Reality Work in Real Estate?
Thinking of how to use virtual reality could seem more like fiction than fact. With VR in real estate, people get to browse through properties in detail, as if they were there in person. An expert skilled in the creation of VR home tours scans the inside of a home and converts the images into a tour. They can then show the tour to buyers. Viewers put on a pair of VR viewing devices, which are sometimes referred to as “goggles,” and can walk through a property. Unlike simple photography or videos, VR home tours allow buyers to examine details up close and get a sense for the proportion of each space.
What Is Augmented Reality?
If virtual reality home tours are designed to show what is, augmented reality has the potential to feature what could be. When people use their smart phones to browse through pictures of a home for sale, they might imagine how they could change the space with a fresh coat of paint, hardwood flooring, or new countertops in the kitchen. Augmented reality makes it easy to change up the details of a real home in an instant. Instead of guessing about a particular style of tile in the bathroom, they can position a smart phone to show the space, and select an option to look at. The change is immediate, and helps people select upgrades or home improvements that will work best.
How Does VR and AR Change the Home Buying Experience?
With access to these technologies, buying a home will never be quite the same. Buyers who want to look at fixer-upper properties or dated homes could see instantaneously how the changes they would like to make will appear. People who are buying a home without being able to see it in real life can have a real feel for the property. Buyers going through a market flooded with homes that are either for sale, newly listed, or even shown as “coming soon” could skip through their options quickly, and only travel to the properties that have passed the test.
What Does VR and AR Mean for Home Sellers?
As interest in these types of technology picks up steam, sellers begin to realize that there are real benefits to offering it to buyers. Buyers want to know everything they can about a property, preferably from the comfort of their own homes. Sellers who can help buyers cut down on the time spent looking for a home through such effective marketing techniques will stand out from the pack. They even able to secure higher sale prices.
Will VR and AR Change a Real Estate Agent’s Role?
At the center of this dynamic is the real estate agent, facilitating interactions between engaged sellers and interested buyers. Agents who innovate to offer these services will attract more sellers who want to use VR and AR to better target what buyers in the area are looking for. It could revolutionize the selling process, but also simplify it to a great degree. With fewer unproductive visits to homes that do not quite fit buyer needs, agents can focus more of the time spent by all parties on matching the right home for sale with a buyer who has already fallen in love with it.
The pace of real estate marketing trends toward customization, and the pairing of buyers with properties that truly meet their needs. With the greater use of virtual reality and augmented reality technologies, agents can help sellers to show what their homes are really like, and what they could ultimately become.