Real estate is a topic that receives a lot of attention. In the last few years, we have been discussing very often the stagnating or very fast growing rea estate market due to the pandemic, war-induced price increases or the slowing European economy.
However, according to experts, it is time to talk about real estate in a different context of technology and future trends. A field that was considered very classical is experiencing a turn of the century.
“The main buyer, who is looking for his first home today, has spent his entire life in independent Lithuania. He is aged between 25 and 35. This means that he has been shaped by the incredibly fast-moving and ever-evolving reality of the last decades. He is modern, used to speed, technology and solutions tailored to him.
In the meantime, let’s take a look at what the home-buying process looks like. It has remained largely unchanged over the last three decades. Consumer expectations and market standards are clearly at odds,” says Deividas Jacka, founder and board member of “Civinity”, one of the largest building maintenance and engineering solutions groups in the Baltic states.
According to the expert, the real estate market will have to adapt technologically to the needs of the new generation and meet the expectations of said generation buyers in the near future. A board member of “Civinity”, which recently became a member of the “Proptech Lithuania” association, shares three key future trends for the real estate sector.
We will make buying and selling faster and easier
“Buying and selling online, signing documents virtually – it’s all part of our daily routine. However, these solutions still sound new in the real estate market. The pandemic has led to virtual inspections of apartments and virtual signing of notarial contracts, but the process of buying a home is still long, slow and disproportionately time-consuming for all parties,” – says D. Jacka.
Various international studies show that the purchasing and general living habits of so-called generation Z are significantly different from previous generations. A particularly striking and recurring difference is speed. Both in decision-making and implementation. This buyer characteristic is increasingly taken into account by all markets.
D. Jacka is convinced that the changes in property sales will gain more momentum in the coming years. Various technological solutions and tools developed in Western countries (including Lithuania) enable to buy and sell real estate safely, quickly and conveniently, adapting to the habits of modern buyers and the need to deal with such issues in virtual space.
“We already have a number of members in the association who are transforming the process of buying and selling real estate with the products they are developing, and I am sure that we will see many more of them in the near future,” – says the head of “Civinity”.
According to him, not only the acquisition process, but also the homes themselves will increasingly adapt to the needs of the buyer. As technology improves, developers will inevitably pay more attention to the personal needs of each buyer in the early stages of a project.
We shall live and maintain our homes more comfortably
The new generation’s approach to life at home and the role of the home also differs. Homes need to be designed for fast, comfortable and hassle-free living.
“This covers a large number of areas. From infrastructure issues such as the fact that a courtyard must be conveniently connected by a cycle path to all key points, from work, school or café. It’s also about shopping – we’re used to online shopping all over the world and we want the things we buy to arrive at our doorstep.
Therefore, we are actively looking for solutions to provide convenient personal mailboxes in stairwells, as part of our commitment to our customers’ homes,” – says D. Jacka.
According to the expert, these are just a few examples, but home maintenance is changing fundamentally: robotic cleaning, window cleaning, microclimate solutions, safety systems against both theft and accidents.
“Smart homes will increasingly become a reality for many of us. Developers are increasingly looking for solutions to make life technologically convenient, even at the design stage. We will build smart homes in a collaborative way: the residents themselves will employ the technology inside, and we, the housing administrators, will provide modern convenience in the staircases, courtyards and throughout the city,” – says the head of “Civinity”.
Smart solutions, he says, are far from being limited to new buildings, so in the future, retrofitting older buildings will also be a sustainable approach.
Using data to protect the environment
Real estate has always been a challenge to the environment: from the use of natural resources for building materials and the occupation of once-raw forests by buildings, to the daily use of energy in those buildings. It is a topic that is constantly raised and thoroughly debated throughout the Western world.
“To build a sustainable future, we must reduce our impact on the environment. The role of real estate is crucial here. We must build in a way that allows us to live as greenly as possible, and to make choices that save resources when we do so.
Here again, technology comes to the rescue. In particular, technology allows us to measure and collect data on today’s situation, which is essential for more sustainable decisions tomorrow. It also helps you live more prudently without compromising your comfort,” – says D. Jacka.
Using electricity, charging networks, solar and other renewable energies – all of these solutions are already a reality in business and commercial buildings, but they are also increasingly common in residential buildings and their courtyards.
“The data will also allow both residents and us, as housing managers, to make decisions about daily living and home maintenance that will save electricity, water and other resources. This is a crucial change and we need to develop the right habits today,” – the Head of “Civinity” is convinced.
These three trends are only part of the technological breakthrough that the real estate market, long regarded as traditional, classical and unchanging, is undergoing. It is also facing many small changes in all areas of its operations, from payment decisions to the design and choice of building materials.