TMCnet Feature
April 08, 2021

Barry Rohweder Explains How Technology Has Impacted Real Estate Development

Technology has had an undeniably huge impact on real estate, and no one knows this better than Barry Rohweder from Saint Louis Park, Minnesota, who has worked in the construction industry for over 40 years. Barry currently buys and sells homes before either developing or rehabbing the property and has been doing so for over 30 years. This experience has helped him to develop his new endeavor - LaborJunction. Between his contracting and real estate background, Rohweder is an expert in everything from new construction, repair, and land development to remodeling for consumers and remodeling/rehabbing his own real estate. He shares the top three ways that the real estate industry has been affected by technology.

Virtual Home Tours

According to Barry Rohweder, one of the major ways that technology has impacted real estate is through the rise of virtual home tours. Owing to technology, showing homes has never been easier or more convenient. That is because, due to technologies like drones, virtual reality, and augmented reality, prospective buyers from anywhere in the world can view a property and feel like they’re there in person, even when they’re not. For example, Rohweder shares that drones are able to provide footage that real estate brokers or developers would have had trouble obtaining in the past. Drones make elevated imagery both possible and affordable, helping brokers market the properties in an attractive and exciting way.

In addition to simply showing off an existing property, Barry Rohweder claims that virtual reality technology also helps developers sell properties that have not yet been completed. This is because such technology can create a detailed digital rendering of what a finished project will look like, even incorporating customized design elements, without there being an actual finished project to tour.

Online Real Estate Marketplaces

The second way that technology has impacted real estate development is through online real estate marketplaces. Nowadays, 43% of buyers begin the home buying process by looking online, with 50% using a mobile website or app in their search. Thus, in-person meetings between real estate brokers and potential buyers are no longer the number one way that people search for a home. Instead, they take to the internet, where they can quickly and easily figure out which homes are available and even refine their search by a number of factors including size, price, neighborhood, or amenities. Barry Rohweder claims that most online real estate marketplaces provide photos, as well as virtual tours of a property without even needing to speak to a broker or agent. That said, when a prospective buyer decides they are interested in a property and wish to contact the broker listed, it reflects poorly on the broker if they do not respond relatively quickly to the request. This relates to a broader point about how technology has also impacted the way that brokers operate and how they market themselves.

Barry Rohweder on the Rise of Smart Home Devices

One final way that technology has impacted the development of real estate is through the popularity of smart home devices. Contractor and real estate expert Barry Rohweder claims that homeowners are requesting that smart home devices be built into their homes more than ever before. Smart home devices are devices that are connected to the internet and are usually more convenient and efficient to use. For example, many smart technologies, from lights to security cameras, can be synced to one’s smartphone so that they can be controlled remotely. Further, others, such as thermostats, are known to help homes become more energy efficient by being able to detect when heating or air conditioning are not necessary, such as when the house is empty. In the present day, there are smart home devices in practically every home improvement category and developers are choosing to incorporate them into their new builds and renovations in an effort to make their properties more attractive to the modern homeowner.

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