The purpose of technology is to improve how we live and work. As a business, we have embraced technology to improve our services to our clients and customers. For a small business we have done this at significant cost, but we are very happy with the return on investment and how it has improved our service to our clients and customers.
VIRTUAL REALITY TOURS
We offer virtual reality (VR) walkthrough tours on all our property listings and all our agents are trained to do them. This has greatly enhanced how we market our properties as we can reach any buyer or tenant anywhere in the world using our technology as the VR tours can be viewed easily on desktop or mobile. You don’t need headgear to have an enhanced experience. It is the next best thing to being there yourself.
For example, a person moving to Dublin can view your apartments virtually, provide references securely on our platform, sign their lease digitally and go straight from Dublin airport to their new rental without having to stay in a hotel or short let. This will also save their employer a lot of money and it also saves times. The VR tours include unique features like a digital dollhouse and digital floor plan.
From a landlord’s perspective, the entire residential lettings process is based on tenants who visit the show apartments. While that can be very effective, show apartments and marketing suites are not open 24/7, you can’t visit them any time you like. Potential tenants not in Dublin cannot visit the show units. How do you reach them? A key advantage VR tours offer is that because they’re digital, they’re accessible 24/7 and from anywhere in the world on the home computer or mobile device. And all the main property portals now use them.
OWEN REILLY BIDDING PLATFORM
We designed our own bespoke bidding platform to bring transparency to the bidding process. Bidders can see when bids are made and the amount offered. In return for this transparency, buyers must provide proof of funding and this can be done securely on our platform.
Once bidders are approved, they enter a private bidding room where they can register their bid. This can be done on any device anywhere in the world. The vendor can observe bids only and will also receive notifications when bids are made so our client always know what is happening.
Our platforms informs all parties immediately when a bid is made and bids can be made any time of the day. This saves a lot of time but also makes the process more efficient. From the vendor’s point of view, it can add momentum to the bidding process which is important as this can contribute to securing the best price as our data confirms the optimum time for this is in the first four weeks of listing. The feedback from buyers is that they like the transparency and have more confidence in the process. At the end of the bidding process bidders can delete their account and data.
Our platform allows us to connect digitally with new clients including vendors, landlords and tenants. Clients can load AML documents, BER cert and other documents securely. Tenants can securely upload proof of ID, address, work reference, landlord reference etc. This all forms part of our tenant passporting. Documents such as instruction letters and leases can be signed digitally on our platform which are legally binding and complies with PRSA regulations. This has saved us a lot of time but also our clients and customers. This perfectly matches the expectations of our younger clients and tenants who are tech-savvy and time-poor. This also fully complies with GDPR. At any stage clients and customers can delete their profile on MyOwenReilly and their data.
SMART PROPERTY MANAGEMENT
We communicate with our 1,000+ tenants using the latest technology which includes several apps. The relationship between tenants and property managers have in general been fleeting and impersonal. Interactions tend to be the occasional phone call or email with a maintenance request. With a void in communication, our landlord clients are often unaware of the significant amount of work taking place on their properties on a day to day basis. Technology can change this and make the relationship more personal but also more efficient.
Technology helps us drive efficiency while delivering more personalised experiences to owners at the same time. This frees up to build important relationships with residents which will help ensure a high retention rate. Rather than only reaching out to remind owners that service charges are due, managers can utilise more time for positive engagement with stakeholders. Although the PRS is still in the relatively early stages, technology is already beginning to drive a new standard of resident-manager relationships and simply incorporating a few new platforms and services into a property’s workflow just isn’t enough.