9 Reasons to Use 360° Virtual Tours for Residential Real Estate

February 20, 2020

360° virtual tours are becoming an increasingly popular choice for residential estate agents looking to showcase property in more engaging and innovative ways. As we move to an era in which agencies must embrace the rolling tide of new technology or fade away altogether, we take a look at the top reasons why VR tours are fast becoming the go-to method for property marketing that goes the extra mile.

1. Win More Listings

For estate agencies in the UK, the number one task is to get new properties to market. However, selling to landlords is not an exact science, and an agent must do all they can to differentiate themselves from the competition. Any service that gives your agency an edge over your competitors will go a long way to securing that all-important listing.

2. Emotional Connection

The full immersiveness of virtual tours creates an emotional connection and engages buyers a lot more efficiently than conventional 2D images, which may look quite a bit different from how a property looks in person. Also, not only does it help build an emotional connection prior to viewing to property in person, it also lets the buyers refer back and further build that emotional connection by letting their imagination run wild with all of the potential for the property.

3. Show husband/wife/parents! (delete as appropriate)

There is rarely just one decision-maker involved in a property purchase. The buyer is likely to need approval from their husband, wife, parents or friends (or at least be seeking their validation). Realistically, however, not everyone will be present at an in-person viewing. A virtual tour allows all parties to get sight of the property at its best, without multiple viewings, saving estate agents’ time as well as increasing the odds of a sale.  

4. Extended Reach

The world today moves faster than ever before. People relocate to study or to work in huge numbers. Finding a place to live, particularly for just a year or two, can be a tremendous hassle. Virtual tours facilitate the online process for overseas renters, buyers and investors. This means you can work with more clients and process more inquiries to ultimately find the right buyer for the property at the best price.

5. Cut Down On Wasted Viewings

Virtual tours save time for sellers, estate agents and buyers. Thanks to virtual reality, there’s no need to travel from one property to another and sit in traffic jams. Instead, buyers can easily enjoy an immersive viewing of the property from the comfort of their sofa...leading to applicants viewing more properties online, only visiting the properties that they are really interested in, and arriving at a deal faster.

6. Content Marketing

Imagine organising an important dinner in a restaurant that you have never been to. Online, one restaurant’s website shows smartphone photos from the venue. The second restaurant has wide angle photos, a virtual tour, a plan of the venue and (of course!) a menu. Which do you choose? Content has been king of marketing for a long time, and virtual tours offer an example of outstanding content. Even if you don’t measure quantitative value for a specific property transaction, the overall marketing value of offering attention-grabbing, tech-literate content is powerful in many aspects of business.

7. Better Service for Applicants

Respect your buyers. As a salesperson, it is your job to show them what the property has to offer. Pushiness dispels trust, which is a value that every agent needs on their side. Virtual tours enable you to step back and let the property do the talking, which it will. Consumers, across all industries, place a high value on being in control of their purchase decisions, and on the experience they have with a brand throughout their purchase journey. By offering VR tours, which they can take in the comfort of their own home, at their own pace, you give them that all-important sense of control, and the space they need to make the right decision. And once they are ready, you can be there to guide them through the next stage with care and due attention.

8. Innovation

It has never been more important to keep up with the times. Innovate or die, so goes the saying, is truer than ever. Even though real estate is notoriously slow on the uptake of digital transformation, change is coming. Indeed, the best agencies are already deep into their technological journey. Virtual tours are a simple-to-enact tech solution that is both cost-effective and fast to implement. Do not fall by the wayside and be caught on the wrong side of history. Innovate.

9. Reporting to owners for rental properties

We are seeing a rising trend in the use of virtual tours as part of an inventory report at the end of tenancies. Photographic evidence has long been used as supporting collateral in inventories and dilapidation schedules. Virtual tours give an extra layer of insight, which can prove very beneficial in the event of any dispute.

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