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3 visual innovations to show a property remotely

Aug 8, 2016

map-301277-edited.pngOther than physically viewing an actual commercial real estate property, the best option for investors used to be marketing flyers (online or printed) that showed an aerial photo or rendering of the asset alongside a very basic description of the property.

This practice is still in use, but fortunately, today’s brokers and owners have several other visual options to market a building, most of them fueled by technological advances.

See it from the sky

Drones are becoming increasingly popular in the marketing of commercial real estate properties. Sometimes a drone can reveal a problem that an aerial photo wouldn’t catch, like the time a tree fell on a commercial real estate asset in such a way that you wouldn’t see it from a regular photograph.

Meanwhile, the FAA issued new guidelines this summer that will make the use of drones easier for real estate investors, according to the National Association of Realtors. Be on the lookout for more exterior property videos in the future that show all of the physical aspects of a property.

See it from the street

Google has also revolutionized how you look at locations around the world. Google Street view takes commercial real estate visualization to a different level, and the company is also targeting retailers, restaurants, hotels and other property sectors where owners might want the tech giant to come and photograph the interiors of their assets.

This development is a plus for people marketing properties for sale or lease. These interior shots are basically a remote tour of the inside of a building, allowing interested parties see what they could eventually purchase or lease without having to physically enter the asset.

Map it out

Maps have been around for centuries and certainly aren’t a new innovation. But the maps of old have been greatly enhanced by technology. Several firms have developed highly interactive maps for commercial real estate that can give insight into a property.

The metrics provided on these maps can include detailed demographic, zoning and sales data and more. In some cases, these applications can give firms a leg up on their competitors because they can potentially show a more customized picture of a building and its surroundings.

Going mobile

Mobile technology has obviously changed our way of life, and the commercial real estate industry is no different. There are now plenty of mobile apps out there that brokers, who are out in the field most of the time, have started to rely on.

The several commercial real estate apps that have been around for a few years now are enhancing the job of brokerage professionals when leasing or trying to sell a property. They provide real-time information about a building that can be shown to a client from virtually anywhere.

Commercial real estate is a business of in-person relationships, and that is not going to change any time soon. But the advent of relatively new technology in the industry is making the transaction process more streamlined for everyone involved.

Next: Maps—your secret weapon in commercial real estate

Ian Ritter

Written by Ian Ritter

Ian Ritter is a veteran commercial real estate writer. He worked several years as retail editor at GlobeSt.com and currently writes about the industry for several corporate clients and news organizations. He holds a Master's Degree from Columbia University's School of Journalism.

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