How to become the flagship brand in Build to Rent
Flagship brands are the influential pioneers our industry looks up to. For the Build to Rent sector, becoming a flagship brand requires the use of carefully chosen tools and technology – so how can your business achieve this goal?
What are the top tech trends in Build to Rent?
As a flagship brand, a market-leading customer experience is a must-have, and keeping up with the latest tech trends is vital to achieve this.
Our data shows providers are working towards further digitalisation of lettings – including providing online viewings, applications, and documentation. Similarly, industry professionals expect to see increasing digitalisation of property services, for example the streamlining of maintenance requests by automating both the customer and the contractor processes.
Smart building technology is also a key area of growth. Using new devices and sensors, operators can allow property managers to provide appliance servicing before problems materialise, as well as planning investment and refurbishment more effectively.
It’s also important to know where the sector looks to be heading in the longer term to fuel ongoing strategic decision making. Our survey respondents highlighted three areas as having high potential for the future of Build to Rent technology:
- Artificial Intelligence (AI): As AI technology is increasingly used to automate processes – for instance, MRI’s Contract Intelligence uses AI to extract data from leases and contracts – it’s likely that this technology will grow further. In the longer term, AI has the potential to identify trends and make predictions, such as anticipating resident needs, and set processes in place that serve those needs.
- Complete digitalisation of property services: In the future, it’s expected that every element of a resident’s experience with their property owners and operators will be digitalised, giving residents the option to manage their housing completely online, at their own convenience.
- Sustainability monitoring and reporting: With environmental factors a major consideration for us all, tech that helps to monitor the environmental impact of a Build to Rent portfolio and identify areas for improving sustainability are likely to be a key innovation.
Impact on the customer: Technology can take the hassle out of reporting repairs and signing leases
Impact on the project: Three key technologies can cut costs and improve customer satisfaction
Impact on the investor: The best, up-to-date technology will future-proof your investment
What technology do you actually need?
Technology in the Build to Rent sector has been here from day one, however rapid growth means that the challenges faced by investors, owners, operators and residents are ever-changing, and technology is evolving to meet these needs. With so much choice, pinpointing exactly what you should be investing in can be a challenge.
Investing in the right solutions can help you achieve goals more quickly and effectively.
Technology can help you communicate more effectively with residents, allowing you to engage customers and provide excellent service, identify trends in customer needs, and find out how your business is performing from the customer’s viewpoint.
The right tech is also critical to meeting the demand for online self-service – as more and more of our lives can be managed online, there is huge demand for owners and operators to provide self-service portals and apps for customers to manage their contracts and payments.
Technology can also help you create entirely new revenue streams and services, helping you to identify opportunities to further meet the needs of customers, investors, and local communities.
To deliver a truly flagship service, it’s important to keep up with the sector
The top ‘must haves’ for residential property software
To deliver truly flagship-level service, it’s important to keep up with the sector and provide customers with the services that are shown to make the biggest impact. Here are the most important technologies for residential property, according to participants in the recent Tech Insights Survey, in partnership with the UKAA:
- Resident engagement portal: Enables residents to manage their contracts, repairs, and payments online; keeps them up to date with the latest events and developments, and helps build an online community.
- Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system: Makes interacting with customers more streamlined, keeps logs of customer interactions, and enables you to see patterns in what your customers are contacting you about.
- End-to-end digital experience for customers and prospects: Provides a digital experience including online applications, contract management, payments, repairs reporting, and contact channels. It can be a comprehensive and trackable experience.