Real Estate Investor October 2020 October/November 2020 - Page 38

TECH STORY

Stay in the loop

Innovation in Property Investing

GRANT SMEE
Property investing has come a long way in the last few years . This is partly due to digital technology and the rise of e-learning methods and tools that have helped to accelerate the industry that we are operating in today .

T he good news is that there is a wealth of ( often free ) resources out there to help make the journey simpler and to educate you throughout your journey . I truly believe that whether you ’ re buying your first or 15th property , there is always something to learn .

The Fundamental Truths of Property Investment
The first place to start when starting your Property Investment journey is understanding that there are no secrets , shortcuts , or ways to fast-track success . The road is long , are you committed ?
To be successful in property investment you need to know the following Truths :
• Have a clear plan . It is important that you start with a goal in mind . The goal must be clear and measurable where you are able to align your Property Investment Strategy to ultimately realise the goals you have set .
• Educate yourself . Once you have a clear goal , you need to educate yourself about the Property Investment Strategies that will help you realise those goals . By understanding the strategy , you will be in a position to choose the right strategy for your needs .
• Take action . You can read a book , watch a show , sit in a seminar , surf the web and research to your hearts content , none of this will take you any closer to actually becoming a Property Investor . Only by taking action , viewing properties , negotiating deals , signing agreements and going through the effort of securing finance will you understand what it takes to be a Property Investor .
• Review , improve , repeat – systemise . Continuously creating processes and systems , then reviewing and improving these helps you create a sustainable and profitable venture that over time could become a passive business investment .
• Remember , it ’ s a business . Treat your investment like a business at all times , be professional and become an expert .
• There is a downside & mitigating risk . As a business owner it is important to always realise there is a potential downside and as a business owner you need to do all you can to mitigate these risks . Rule number one of Property Investment , don ’ t lose money .
• Don ’ t buy into hype . Property won ’ t make you rich tomorrow , in fact , very little will . It takes time and effort to create a sustainable and successful business .
• Beware of the furu ( fake guru ) – there are many teachers that make their money from selling theory , selling a dream , only making money from teaching and not doing . Careful of who you follow , who you buy into , who you spend money with . Remember , there are no secrets , shortcuts or ways to fast-track success , don ’ t pay money if this is what you ’ re promised .
Digital technology at your disposal
In addition to mentors and friends who have done it all before , there is a wealth of credible resources out there to guide you on your investment journey . These include :
• Online tools
• Research tech – also known as proptech in this context .
• Business tech
• Education tech
A disclaimer . Before delving in to the world of “ proptech ,” I think it ’ s important to state my opinion on this oftenmisused term . My opinion is that most " proptech " is in fact not really anything other than tech enabled services rather than truly disruptive and innovative tech that is improving the industry .
However , proptech can be a valuable online resource for
14 OCTOBER / NOVEMBER 2020 SA Real Estate Investor Magazine
PROPTECH Online is the new Frontline Commercial rentals comparator T echnology is here to stay and to change the way in which industries operate. How we communicate, work and shop has been changed dramatically over the last six months and nothing can stop its progression. It is argued that the key is having vision of how it can enhance the lives of ordinary citizens. Quoin Online has focussed on enhancing the experience of users in the sale and letting of commercial property. The technology that has been developed has completely transformed the leasing of properties making the process accessible to all. The Quoin Online comparator has created a commercial, online property marketplace, allowing tenants and brokers to choose from the various Landlord sales and rental options that best suit their needs. With search optimisation, users can fine tune their criteria and review properties that best suit their needs, preferences, and budgets. Research has shown that 61% of South African internet users prefer to complete tasks digitally whenever possible. Tenants looking for commercial space to rent therefore would carry out the initial search online. The Quoin Online comparator makes this easier for users by aggregating vacancy listings from various landlords, allowing the users to make such comparison themselves. A matrix presenting the listed stock and supplying the information needed allows flexible marketing to view multiple offerings and allows the users to make a correct and informed decision. Why has there never been comparator for commercial rentals before? Well, the answer lies in the manual aspect within property. Brokers are the middlemen between landlords and tenants. Brokers build a relationship with tenants and seek new relationships by approaching tenants to help find a new space to let that fits their requirements. The brokers aggregate the data by obtaining the vacancy schedules of landlords and then try a match the vacancy 32 OCTOBER/NOVEMBER 2020 SA Real Estate Investor Magazine to the tenant. However, there are some issues that come into play. Some stock may be marketed better than others which may lead tenants to rent a space that may not be the best fit for their requirements. Landlords have no control on how their property is marketed and information could be disparate. Information may be limited as the property market is heavily reliant on the information and role of brokerages where physical viewings and communication between tenant and broker occur. What benefit is there to tenants conducting their own research for new spaces? Tenants can be in control of their decision-making process without bias input. The information is always accessible as online creates the efficiency to research at any time. Why would landlords want their stock to be listed on the comparator? In the current market, there is an oversupply of commercial space that remains vacant for long periods of time. Having all the stock listed in a central place makes it easier to compare to other landlords pricing, incentives, offering etc. The landlords are in control of the marketing of their own stock. In the end the landlords want their space let as vacant spaces cost more money. In addition, Quoin posts area overviews of suburbs which include public amenities, accessibility, shops and restaurants and recreational activities. These area overviews help tenants ensure their decision is based off real market data and with the help of photos, descriptions, vacancy details, additional rental documents, videos and virtual tours, the tenants are less likely to waste time viewing properties that are not the right fit for their business. SOURCE Quoin Online SA Real Estate Investor Magazine OCTOBER/NOVEMBER 2020 33