Real Estate Tech Leaders Discuss Transformative Impact of Artificial Intelligence

Real Estate Tech Leaders Discuss Transformative Impact of Artificial Intelligence

By National Association of Realtors

WASHINGTON (May 8, 2024) – Tech leaders took the stage at the 2024 REALTORS® Legislative Meetings(link is external) to discuss the integration of cutting-edge technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI) and augmented reality (AR) into real estate business practices. Several hundred real estate agents attended Tuesday’s “Emerging Business Issues and Technology Forum(link is external),” where a panel of experts explored how these technologies are transforming the industry, enhancing client interactions and shaping the future of real estate transactions.

The panel was moderated by Julie Whitesell, chair of the Emerging Business Issues and Technology Forum and broker in charge at Meybohm Real Estate. After welcoming the audience, Whitesell kicked things off by asking the panelists about the current landscape of AI and real estate technology.

Jeff Allen, president of CubiCasa, said it is easier than ever to enhance media and outputs on listings.

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“This is where AI has had a particularly big impact,” Allen said. “You can now generate a floor plan from a smartphone, virtually stage photos with AI and create virtual tours with much less effort. It’s getting easier, more affordable and more accessible for agents to raise the bar.”

Sam DeBord, CEO of the Real Estate Standards Organization, discussed how his nonprofit supports agents who are Realtors® with data standards and processes that create efficiencies for all participants in real estate transactions. He explained that the future listing experience will not just be data fields and pictures.

“There’s a lot more media out there,” DeBord said.

When the discussion turned to AR, DeBord pondered a future where smart glasses with embedded cameras might assist agents with their listings.

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“You could walk through a property and take video very quickly and easily,” he said. “That could turn into a 360-degree video, it could turn into a floor plan – it could be all kinds of different things that practitioners could use to improve the consumer experience.”

 Scott Richard, vice chair of the Emerging Business Issues and Technology Forum and owner of Richard Realty, highlighted the importance of embracing new technologies despite the rapidly changing environment.

“When you adopt a technology early, you become an expert in that field eventually,” Richard said. “Don’t be afraid to adopt the technology. It doesn’t matter what it is; just start doing it. It’s eventually going to get easier for you.”

Speaking on the impact of smartphones in marketing, Richard noted that there have been significant advancements in the past few years.

 “You have the most powerful marketing tool possible right in your pocket,” he said. “I can create a cinematic-style listing video on my cellphone that rivals a production company. It’s available, and it’s in the palm of your hand right now.”

Chris Christensen, NAR director of technology policy, shared insights into how NAR staff works with committees to help develop and refine AI policy. He stressed the importance of member involvement in shaping policy.

“Your participation in the process really matters,” Christensen said.

Christensen also discussed exciting new startups in the real estate landscape and highlighted his support for companies in Second Century Ventures(link is external)‘ REACH scale-up program.

“REACH is curating a list of new technologies to help your business,” he said.

Julie Whitesell concluded the session by emphasizing the word “opportunity” to the engaged crowd of real estate professionals.

“You all have a great opportunity to take advantage of the things you learned and try new things,” she said.

“Copyright NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS®. Reprinted with permission.”

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