Adding Real Estate to the Cart: Improvisation in times of crisis

CIOL Bureau
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Adding Real Estate to the Cart Improvisation in times of crisis

While we are marooned in this lockdown and staying home and social distancing have become imperative, it is even harder for those who wanted to shift homes just around the lockdown period. However, the timing could not be more perfect to kick in the trend of online video walkthroughs for prospective tenants.


While the concept is not very new and is being practised in most developed countries, in India it was still in nascent stages and looked like a far-fetched reality. One could certainly shortlist on call, but finalizing on call is a big leap for our country.

The process cuts down massively on time, effort and money. It connects the two parties that are needed. It even cuts down on biases and influences that middlemen bring in. Instead of properties being listed with photographs, the owners are sharing videos of the property.

These videos are uploaded on to the platform and prospective tenants and buyers can check them out. Videos are as good as checking it out in person. We have also noticed a spike in clicks for properties that have a video as they give a better estimation about the size, area and what the property looks like in real.


Technological intervention can do miracles for the real estate sector. It is almost as if you’ve added your chosen home to your cart before checking out (pun intended). It feels a lot more personal than just looking at property photographs. It has fewer hassles as most people today have good smartphones and video quality is great! It leaves little room for guessing actual measurements of a room as a video is a lot more accurate about dimensions. Over 5000 property videos are live on already!

To our surprise, many home-seekers were quickly onboarded on the process. We thought we would pilot it, but what we have today is over 200 successful cases of tenants finalizing homes only via video walkthroughs and without an actual property visit. Come to think of it, it is not phones or books or vegetables that one is ordering or booking online. It is a home that people would stay in. It is a big decision.

Traditionally, when people were shifting between cities, they would stay in a guesthouse or temporary accommodation until they found a house. But video walkthroughs, although necessitated by the current situation, have become quite popular already. The trend is more popular in rental space and apartment complexes.


There are a couple of factors that have eased customers into this, most important of those being that online research for an apartment is easily available and reliable. Potential tenants have a video call with the owners who show them the property and it is as good as an actual visit. Wherever needed, our relationship managers have been involved to answer any queries that home-seekers might have about the property or the apartment.

Technology is a great way to save the gigantic industry that has been pulled down by multiple factors. From online discovery to online rent payment and rental agreement, technology has helped the sector come a long way. Video-walkthroughs are poised to give a new facelift to the staggering sector and provide a much-needed respite from the clutches of an economic slowdown. It is a dynamic shift and it is quite overwhelming to see so many owners and seekers already onboarded on the shift.

Now that online video walkthroughs have become prevalent, we believe that this trend will continue to take shape and remove a few more hassles from the home-search journey. This process is efficient and faster.


Amit Agarwal, Cofounder and CEO of NoBroker Amit Agarwal, Cofounder and CEO of NoBroker

Isn’t it great that customers do not have to hop on from property to property to find out the one to their liking?

If they are making a rental decision, this process saves time, effort, and money. If they are making a purchase decision, online videos walkthroughs are a great way to shortlist and weed out properties they would not like. Also, the process removes the biases that a broker is prone to have towards certain properties (basis their commission) as the connection is between both sides of consumers and does not involve a middleman. It, therefore, leaves no room for influencing and manipulation.

We have noticed this happening across cities- Bangalore, Mumbai, Hyderabad, Chennai, Pune, and Delhi-NCR. I feel that it is a big game-changer for the industry and would remove a few more hurdles that customers face while searching for a house. Now that they have had a taste of it, we hope that the trend continues beyond the lockdown period. We will continue to make this experience even better and smoother as we believe that technology has the power to achieve that which could only be thought of and wished for real estate.