The residential property industry will fondly remember the first few years of the new millennium as the "golden era", a time when sales agents could sit back and take orders whilst the desks of mortgage originators groaned under the strain of new contracts. Banks loaned freely, property developers knew that selling was a no-brainer and everyone was a buyer. As the wave grew even the traditionally most conservative investor considered speculating, after all, this was just too good an opportunity to pass up. But, as with any cycle, the golden days turned to gloom, banks shut the doors on lending and the unthinkable, an actual year-on year decline in value, became a reality.
One thing is a given : the next upward cycle will be profoundly different. Not only have the current generation of property investors learnt the hard way, but consumers are becoming more astute researchers of the products they buy. The once archaic real estate industry, filled with autocratic structures, paper pushing administrators and defunct methods of transacting, will be transformed. The tree has been shaken hard, and now the rumblings of revolution are everywhere. Not only will the way we buy and sell property change, but online technologies are set to take centre stage as the sacred cow disappears into the sunset.
What will this look like? Which technologies will be embraced, and which will end up in the junkyard of technology? Glitzy white elephants abound within any industry, but that is not our focus. We are searching for those golden ones and zeros – web based services, software and strategies that will propel a good product to greatness.
Over the next few months we will be journaling our experiences here. This is our show house (showroom?), and you are invited. Oh, and you don’t have to sign the register, but your thoughts are very welcome indeed :-)