London played host to the second UK FinTech Week last week, with both home-grown and international FinTech businesses descending on the capital to discuss the issues affecting the sector and the opportunities for even further growth. Philip Hammond went so far as to say the “fourth industrial revolution” was being driven by advances in this area.
But it doesn’t end there. Look across to the property sector and the initial success within financial services is being replicated, transforming how consumers and property professionals interact. From the process of buying, selling or renting a house in just days and securing a mortgage in minutes, to virtual reality and sourcing shared workspaces, tech can deliver efficiency and transparency to real estate in the same way.
That said, collaboration is certainly needed: the start-ups breaking the mould will often need to partner with larger names to enable them to scale, while the latter group will arguably be left behind if they bury their collective heads in the sand. It’s not that one is better than the other. Rather than rendering physical viewings obsolete, for example, virtual reality can instead allow people to view a property remotely before doing so in person, allowing them to filter out those they aren’t interested in and saving time for all involved.
The best ideas and processes need to be cherry picked from both sides. Only once tradition truly pairs with innovation will consumers will be offered the best service, and then we’ll see ‘PropTech’ truly deliver the revolution it promises.