In today’s digital world we utilize smartphones and laptops for almost everything. Whether it involves looking for a certain product, restaurant, or the best place to get a haircut, people can now find what they’re looking for with a click of a button. And in commercial real estate, businesses are now utilizing virtual leasing when they are shopping around for different office space locations.
What Is Virtual Leasing?
The traditional way to lease commercial real estate involves in-person tours where the potential lessee can get a feel for the space, view the layout and size and visually imagine how this space could serve their business needs. In a digital age, and now due to social distancing guidelines, virtual leasing gives the prospective tenant the ability to get that experience without having to physically walk through the property. The technologies available for virtual leasing include self-guided tours and 360 virtual tours.
Each technology has its benefits, but it is important for landlords or brokers to include human experience in these virtual tours. Brokers can use virtual tours to help prospective tenants explore the halls and amenities of the office and while answering questions and providing information utilizing chatbots.
The Value of Virtual Leasing in the Real Estate Industry
Many agents argue virtual leasing does not compare to traditional physical leasing, but it’s not intended to be an apples-to-apples experience. This form of leasing and engagement provides businesses with the ability to tour spaces without having to be in person to view them. In many cases, virtual experiences provide interested parties the ability to see a space before scheduling an in-person tour.
You should not buy or lease a property you haven’t seen. This technology provides property owners and brokers showing space to prospective tenants with extensive value when they are out-of-state. By integrating virtual capabilities into commercial leasing, real estate companies can stand out amongst their competition.
In our current COVID-19 landscape, virtual leasing has become a prominent source of relief for tenants. A recent poll conducted by VTS found that 70% of U.S. tenants would feel uncomfortable doing an in-person tour of office space. 80% of respondents said they would much rather take a virtual tour of a space before actually touring it in-person.
The Negative Side to Virtual Leasing
While there are many benefits to leasing virtually, it does have its downfalls. The most apparent being the lack of human interaction in many virtual systems. According to The Gartner Group, 85% of consumer’s experience with a company will include zero human interaction. While we don’t necessarily need to have a human interaction when shopping for office spaces, it does leave something to be desired.
Commercial real estate agents will have a wealth of knowledge that interested tenants can’t fully appreciate when virtually leasing. They’ll know the ins and outs of the market, and will be able to fully look out for you and your best interests. To provide a top-notch virtual experience, realtors must invest a lot of time and resources into creating a well-rounded virtual leasing experience.
Contact Plaza Companies Today
Technology has become an integral part of the business world. When it comes to real estate, it’s expanding our capabilities to empower us to provide quality services for our clients. At Plaza Companies, we’re excited to embrace new technology that will make it easier to engage with prospective tenants. Contact us today to learn how we can help find you the right office space!