As a real estate agent, you may have used proptech solutions, Zillow, and some additional apps and tools being one of them.
Since this technological development is likely here to stay, I decided to write a more in-depth article about real estate proptech.
In this article, you will learn…
- What proptech real estate is
- What it means, what proptech software is, and what it does
- Why it is important
- How it changes real estate
- And the 54 real estate proptech companies for real estate agents and property managers that are available.
Proptech has and will directly affect your overall real estate marketing strategies. So my article will hopefully give you a good overview.
What is Proptech Real Estate, and What Does It Mean?
“Proptech” is a short form of “property technology.”
Overall, “proptech” is a disruptive technology field aiming to make different business processes in real estate more effective and efficient and thus reduce costs for all market participants.
It is sometimes used interchangeably with terms such as Retech or Realtech.
I know, that’s a pretty generic answer, so let’s dig a bit more into the meaning of it.
But actually, it’s nothing from another world.
In simple terms, it’s just part of a trend to apply digital technology (software, apps, websites, etc.) to different former less digital industries and areas to make them more digital and thus more efficient and effective.
If you apply technology to improve your sleep, you get “sleeptech,” if you apply it to banks, you get “banktech,” well, it’s actually called “fintech.” In construction, when you use 3D printing to build homes, it is called “contech.”
When you apply tech to cities, you get “smart cities,” and to homes, you get “smart homes.”
Well, I think by now you get my drift. Just apply the term “smart” or “tech” somewhere in an already existing field, and you often get the proper term.
So, since it’s not called “realtech” (real estate technology) but “proptech” (property technology), we can assume that the main focus of the different software solutions relates to all types of business processes around properties.
I already strived this topic in my two articles about real estate marketing tools and mobile apps for realtors.
Those two articles could rather fit in the category of “realtech.”
But in the article about apps, I also mentioned property and rental management apps, which also fall under “proptech.”
Buildium, one of the mentioned apps, helps property owners streamline different business processes, such as property inspections right from the app.
What Is Proptech Software?
Now that the term “proptech” is hopefully a bit more clarified, you may also be wondering what proptech software is all about.
Software overall is nothing else than a combination of commands, rules, and datasets to carry out specific tasks.
Proptech software is thus software that carries out specific tasks related to business processes around properties.
Let’s use the property management tool from above.
The algorithm (a set of predefined rules) could be that when new tenants move into an apartment, they get added to the tool with their contact data.
The predefined rule is that once new tenants get added, they get an automatically generated email that allows them to know about important documents related to parking rules.
So, these predefined rules carry out the automatic task to let the new tenants know about the rules of an apartment complex.
Why Is Proptech Important
This question has the underlying assumption that proptech is important. So let’s first see if it is important and then why this might be the case.
How can we confirm that the assumption of proptech being important is true?
We can check the statistics and market trends and see if we can find some sort of growth in the supply and demand of proptech solutions.
What are the statistics saying?
- In 62% of real estate businesses, you can already find a senior-level manager that is in charge of digital transformation (source)
- According to this source (source), Proptech gained more support funding each year before the pandemic hit.
- Since 2014 the investments attractiveness of the PropTech sector has shown a growth (compounded annual growth rate) of 45% (source)
- There is an increased demand for virtual home tours, which can also be considered as proptech (source)
- The majority of gen-z renters prefer smart-home tech over traditional amenities (source)
From the statistics, we can see growth both on the demand and supply side of the market.
Investors are confident that supply will meet the demand. If not they wouldn’t invest. And from the demand side, we can also see an increase.
Thus, we can confidently conclude that the assumption that proptech is important is true.
Now, why is proptech important?
It has to do with economic principles and, most importantly, maximization of profits.
When you, as a real estate business owner or real estate agent, want to achieve the maximum returns with limited resources and output, proptech can be of help.
Why? Because it increases efficiency in your business processes and reduces costs.
For example, if you use an app for open houses that can capture leads and send follow-up messages automatically, you will save time by not doing all that manually.
This frees up time that you can invest in other areas of your business, or you just grow faster since you can handle more leads in the same amount of time.
That’s why proptech is important.
Unfortunately, it also creates pressure on those market participants that don’t want to use or apply proptech.
Because the ones using it will have the edge over those not using it. So there is the real danger that the non-users may fall back behind.
It’s similar to a farmer who wants to remain in the past and plow the field with the help of cows and a farmer who switched to a tractor.
To stay competitive, the farmer with the cows had to adapt and also use a tractor.
The competitive advantage you get by using tech in real estate or for properties also indirectly affects real estate marketing.
For example, you could position yourself as a proptech friendly real estate agent and attract more gen-z tenants (in the case of your being an agent for rental properties).
Or using proptech or realtech can free up time for you to invest in more and/or better marketing methods.
How Proptech is Changing Real Estate – Is It the Future?
The growth and the application of proptech in real estate are evident from what I covered above.
And as it always happens when tech is introduced in a field, it changes how market participants interact and behave, and this is no different in real estate.
The increasing number of proptech software supply also does one important thing.
It gathers data. And more information and data lead to more market transparency.
This increased information leads to better-informed decisions that market participants can make.
The U.S. real estate market, is already one if not the most transparent real estate market in the world, and proptech will increase this transparency.
But this is not a one-way street.
Because it is already one of the most transparent real estate markets in the world, proptech startups can especially thrive in the U.S.
Therefore, one can also see the growth of proptech in other countries (e.g. the U.K., but it’s still far behind what is happening in the U.S.
An example here is Zillow, which can be considered a proptech company.
With the data Zillow has been gathering, all kinds of real estate market participants can now analyze different regional markets at a higher degree of transparency.
So again, more informed decisions can be made faster than before.
There will be a point when more and more users get used to proptech solutions and can’t imagine behaving differently like before anymore.
It’s a bit like with Uber. Depending on the city you were in, you sometimes had to wait a good while just to get a taxi.
With Uber, more and more consumers expect to have a ride within minutes.
So the introduction of technology generally comes with a behavior change.
Another example is Fixflo, an app that helps report repairs easily for agents and tenants.
In the past, you would have had someone you trust come over to fix something, provided they were available.
With Fixflo, you have instant access to different providers and can schedule and organize the required work from the app.
The chances of proptech going away anytime soon are slim because of the market demand, supply, and growth it has been experiencing (confirmed in the statistics). It is, therefore, likely the future for real estate.
As a real estate agent, you may now be worried that real estate agents and other professionals will be replaced at some point in the future.
I see this risk only in a limited form. Why?
Because even if at some point there are robots that can do everything a real estate agent can do, there will always be humans that would prefer to deal with a real human being.
There are also many skills that artificial intelligence won’t be able to replace, such as empathy (emotional intelligence), creativity, and judgment.
Many of these skills are necessary for sales, especially in sales of high-ticket items, such as houses and buildings.
What I rather see is some sort of hybrid situation.
More real estate agents and other real estate professionals may make the most out of proptech to their advantage.
The ones that completely reject proptech may be replaced by agents taking full advantage of the technology.
But I don’t see a full-fledged robot take-over.
48 Proptech Startup Companies for Property Management & Real Estate Agents
During my research, I came across a great source to find more proptech startup companies in different niches and verticals.
Therefore, if you want to spend hours researching more companies in other verticals and niches, I can recommend this website with great search and filter options for targeted searches.
Although I see a thriving proptech startup growth mainly in the U.S, Israel, and the U.K., I included only proptech startups that had at least global and/or U.S. operations in the table below.
They also had to have some relevance and value to real estate agents and other real estate professionals.
Proptech for Property Management – 5 Startup Companies
This section will provide you with five different mainly proptech startup companies for property management businesses I picked from the overview table above to study them a bit further.
The use cases might not only be interesting exclusively to property management firms but also to realtors and other real estate professionals.
You can learn more about the remaining ones by clicking the links in the table.
So, let’s get started.
This proptech startup company was founded in 2016 with headquarters in Tel Aviv and operates in three cities (New York City, Tel Aviv, and Munich).
The software as a service aims to optimize energy consumption, reduce costs, enhance the well-being of tenants’ productivity, and optimize the use of the space of facilities.
Here, you can learn more about them.
Home365 was also founded in 2016 and has headquarters in San Antonio, California.
The main value proposition of this proptech startup company is to remove risks and unknowns of rental property ownership and at the same time, help generate predictable profits.
The company provides rental listings with vacancy insurance and tenant management at a fixed all-inclusive rate.
You can check out home365 here.
This proptech startup company is still fairly fresh and was founded in 2020. They have their headquarters in New York but operate nationwide.
The core focus of their value proposition is in improving communication for buildings and, of course, all parties involved.
Some of Daisy’s features for property managers include:
- 24/7 chat support
- A dedicated resident app for your building
- Online voting
- Digital move in/ out process
- Real-time budget monitoring
You can learn more about them here.
Smart Rent is a proptech startup company founded in 2017 that has its operation area in the U.S.
It is basically a smart home automation management platform for property managers and tenants and helps you control all of the smart devices of different properties.
Suppose a property manager has different vacant units.
With SmartRent, you can then remotely control thermostats, lights, door locks, and many more smart devices.
You can check out SmartRent here.
The last proptech company I picked is Cozii. They were founded in 2012, and their operation area is also the U.S.
The company aims to make renting more transparent, secure, and easier.
The platform provides landlords with online rental applications, secure tenant screening, tenant insurance, and simple-rent payments.
You can learn more about them here.
Proptech for Real Estate Agents – 4 Proptech Startup Companies
In this section, you will find my 5 picks of proptech startup companies for real estate agents of the total of 30 I could identify during my research.
Kiko is most suitable for real estate agents focused on property rentals. This proptech company was founded in 2019 and operates in the U.S. and Europe.
The company can help you run your own online platform for renting out and managing your properties on your website.
You can check out Kiko here.
The startup company hauzd operates in the 3D space and provides interactive sales tools for real estate brokers and developers, such as augmented reality solutions, 3D exterior, and interior spaces, and 360° views.
The company was founded in 2015 and operates globally.
You can learn more about them here.
DealSumm, founded in 2013 and Silicon Valley-based, created a solution in the legal area of commercial real estate.
The company’s software can automatically extract the fine print, terms, and conditions hidden in a contract and thus provide a lot of time savings.
The software is powered by machine learning and natural language processing.
For example, it can calculate the financial conditions from different documents, such as a lease its amendments, and then summarize this information.
You can check out KikoDealSumm here.
UpNest is a bit like Zillow, only without direct sellers (FSBOs), and is a real estate agent marketplace that connects agents representing sellers with home buyers.
It is likely a controversial platform for real estate agents since it is advertised to buyers as a commission-saving solution.
The savings are achieved by motivating competition between agents that have to send their commission quotes to sellers before they are hired.
Upnest was founded in 2013 and has its headquarters in Burlingame, California.
Here you can learn more about them.
This article has been reviewed by our editorial team. It has been approved for publication in accordance with our editorial policy.
Author & Founder