We know, as leaders in the multifamily tech space, that it’s vital to stay up-to-date with industry shifts. The proptech landscape is ever-changing – what was innovative yesterday may be old news by tomorrow. That’s why we know it’s imperative to attend industry events, where we can learn directly from the source about upcoming trends – ensuring we stay at the forefront of these changes.
Recently our team, including Mike Branam and Nate Wysk, were in Las Vegas attending this year’s OPTECH Conference and Exposition. The annual event is hosted by the National Multifamily Housing Council where industry leaders give insight to the current state of the industry as well as predictions of future trends, challenges and opportunities.
Here are our three key takeaways from the conference…
3 key takeaways from OPTECH 2022
1. Consolidation, M&A, and tech stacks
Proptech has progressed rapidly in recent years, which has been very rewarding for the multifamily housing industry. As macro trends start to reshape the sector and the market becomes crowded, it’s inevitable we’ll see an uptick in mergers and acquisitions (M&As) between property tech companies, as they consolidate solutions. The larger, long-time players will want to dominate the landscape by investing in start-ups they believe will out scale competitors.
Consolidation will also be evident at the property management level. With the ongoing economic downturn, managers will be looking to refine their tech stacks – being very selective about the investments they choose to make going forward. For those just beginning to adopt proptech, it will be vital to build a solid foundation with a property management system before adding ancillary tech products.
2. Automation vs. economic challenges
Economic pressures continue to drive property managers towards proptech that reduces operating costs through energy savings and optimizes employee tasks. We’ll see a rise in investment in tech which automates day-to-day processes and improves efficiencies, such as communication tech, smart access solutions, and home monitoring systems (smart thermostats, HVAC, water).
These solutions, especially access management – which can streamline communication and tasks between your various teams – also help property managers to navigate current staffing shortages and rising labor costs.
How can you achieve this? Imagine your property is equipped with smart locks. This includes all entrances, communal areas, and apartments. Now imagine you can provide personalized access through the touch of a button on your smartphone. Rental showings become self-guided tours. Maintenance needs don’t need to be monitored by on-site staff. Move-out days are simplified, allowing your team to instead refocus their time on more important tasks.
3. Improving residential experiences with proptech
The resident experience is another major focus for the multifamily housing sector right now. Property managers will continue to lean on technologies that help meet rising prospective resident expectations and keep current residents satisfied, with an aim to improve renewal rates. That being said – it’s now less about the transaction (gaining and maintaining leases) and more about using technology solutions to elevate experiences.
What does this look like? As mentioned earlier, access solutions enable prospective residents to tour a rental without the need for onsite staff. This provides them with improved flexibility over when they can view the rental, and allows them to do so in their own time. Current residents benefit from increased security, awareness, and control over their rental – including being able to let in friends or dog walkers remotely.
The economic environment may be challenging right now, but the prospects for the multifamily tech sector are not. There are many business opportunities and investments in proptech that will likely bring consolidation, M&As, and refinement of tech stacks. Automation technology will continue to gain popularity with property managers, and the focus on the experience of the resident will become a bigger priority.
Want to know more about how tech like smart thermostats, monitoring sensors, and access solutions can help your multifamily business optimize operations and create happy residents? Check out our recent blog detailing what a day looks like for a tech-equipped multifamily building.