The Experts We Need In The Digital Age Real Estate Ecosystem

The Experts We Need In The Digital Age Real Estate Ecosystem

A couple of months ago, we shared Real Estate Investment Insights And Access A Global Community Of Experts,” “Find The Right Experts,” and “The Forces That Will Shape The Future Of Real Estate Investing.” Those posts contain our view on how technology transforms real estate experts’ roles and their impact on the world of real estate investing.

Today, we want to tell you more about the real estate experts we at Denzity look forward to working with – think of this as our Wishlist

The digital age experts 
As we enter an era of fast-paced digitization, it is hard to predict the outlook of the real estate sector. Growing uncertainties on how technology will shape the real estate industry started with tech companies, like Zillow and Airbnb, which disrupted their sub-market inside the real estate sector.

While real estate experts fear what big disruptor is next, digital-age experts are ready to embrace and adapt to new technologies that improve their performance and service to customers. Change is inevitable: accept that the old ways of doing business might not work and focus on integrating technology so that you don’t fall behind and miss opportunities.

The core values of world-class experts 
As the world becomes more competitive, experts have curated a leading position to deliver excess value compared with their competitors. As their top priority is to exceed customer expectations, they place the needs of each customer above their own.

Having worked with many experts around the world, we’ve identified eight key qualities they tend to have:

  1. Consistent: Stay motivated and focused on the energy to go above and beyond.
  2. Disciplined: Focus on achieving your client’s goals, however difficult they may be.
  3. Trustworthiness: Make a promise and work towards upholding the highest work ethic.
  4. Dedication: Deliver detailed and well-thought-out results for your clients.
  5. Selflessness: Share your knowledge and experience to build meaningful relationships.
  6. Creative: Demonstrate deep knowledge of their domain and produce creative solutions to solve problems.
  7. Critical: Learning always like a beginner and improvise where and when needed.
  8. Passionate: Delivering value in every response you receive.

These are the types of attributes we at Denzity are looking for in real estate experts.

Our 2020 Wishlist 

As mentioned in Year-End Review 2019”, our top priority in 2020 is to broaden the pool of excellent, reliable insights directly from experts (real estate agents/brokers, institutional firms, and transactional advisors) helps address real estate enthusiasts’ uncertainties and frustrations with market research, sourcing experts & projects, and conducting due diligence in real estate investing.

As we station in Hong Kong, we start by focusing on the topics that Hong Kong real estate enthusiasts are interested in. Topics such as:

  • Real estate market (mainly the UK, Canada, the US, Japan, and Southeast Asia)
  • Property exhibitions held in Hong Kong
  • Real estate fractional ownership (crowdfunding, P2P lending, STOs)
  • PropTech
  • Feng Shui
  • And many more.

We strongly believe that building this ecosystem, which encourages contribution and transparency within the real estate industry, can speed up learning and provide better clarity for everyone involved.
If you are interested to join as one of the Denzity Experts, you can email us at [email protected]

We looking forward to speaking further. 

Above and beyond,

Darren
Co-founder, Denzity

The Leadership We Need In The 2020 Digital World

The leadership we need in the 2020 digital world

Welcome back! I hope you take some time to rest, refresh, and recharge during the holidays. If you have been following the news lately, you’ve likely experienced some good and bad, ups and downs. There are so many uncertainties with global events, such as Brexit, US-China trade war, potential recession coming, and possible US-Iran war. It is hard to predict how 2020 will plan out. 

During these troubled times, any organization that embodies positive leadership qualities will strive, especially in real estate where good thought leadership will help navigate our rapidly changing, complex, and fragmented industry.

After chatting with some experienced industry leaders, we have identified three critical aspects:

1. Be at the forefront, as a true leader

A leader needs to be at the forefront of the team. From Jim Collins’ book “Good To Great”, he describes the “Level 5 Leadership” of an organization (the ultimate top leaders) as having 7 key attributes:

(i) Be ambitious for the organization to excel but modest about what you contribute.

(ii) Be fanatically driven, obsessed even, to produce exceptional results on a sustainable basis.

(iii) Build successors to be even more successful.

(iv) Share the praise amongst the team when things go well.

(v) Be happy to take the blame when things go wrong.

(vi) Never have larger than life personalities.

(vii) Greatness comes from quiet, hard work, rather than heroic acts.

For more information, I would suggest checking out his book. As a true leader, you need to set yourself at the highest standard to allow your team to follow.

2. Transparent communication

As a leader, you might face stress or a tough decision to make. Do not put the problems just on your shoulders – share the burden with your team and tell-it-like-it-is to ensure the free flow of information. By sharing decision-making tasks and involving multiple people during brainstorming, your team can generate ideas freely in your organization to help solve problems together.

3. Actively listen to your team and make this a priority

In this environment, you need to evolve with the market swiftly and adapt to change with growth in mind. To spot these subtle movements, you need to actively listen to your team carefully. Exceptional leaders regularly check-in with their team. From their conversations, you might find cues in your team spot that you have not. Also, learn what they suggest (process and tools) that might help your organization be more productive.

Great leaders, whether you are in the real estate or the PropTech sector, need to continually find ways to improve and respond to the market so that their organization will be at the forefront of the exciting changes. You, as a leader, are in charge of finding the areas where change is needed. Be the version of yourself and strive for betterment.

As a leader, what is your biggest pain point? What innovation do you hope to see more of within your organization and the sector? Let us know in the comments below.

Above and beyond, 

Darren

Co-founder, Denzity

Year-End Review 2019

We have spent some time reflecting on our journey and want to share our exciting plans for 2020.

2019 is almost over, and we are only a couple of weeks away from turning 1-year old (Woohoo!). We want to thank everyone who has encouraged and supported us along this journey. We have spent some time reflecting on our journey and want to share our exciting plans for 2020.

At first, we set out to build a comprehensive real estate fractional ownership database worldwide. By aggregating hundreds of real estate fractional ownership platforms scattered worldwide, our portal was designed for you to find everything in one place and in an organized manner to streamline your research and due diligence process before investing in real estate fractional ownership. You can get a better grasp of the industry landscape and spot opportunities easier and faster. We were confident that our platform would become a key enabler in this sector. 

However, after launching our beta and getting feedback, we realized that our platform has yet to establish an essential element: forming a close-knit community of real estate enthusiasts and real estate experts by encouraging contribution and transparency. Community engagement enables deep, meaningful relationships to build trust and confidence.  Having a pool of excellent, reliable insights directly from experts (real estate agents/brokers, institutional firms, and transactional advisors) helps address your uncertainties and frustrations with market research, sourcing experts & projects, and conducting due diligence in real estate investing. This access can speed up your learning and provide you better clarity for your real estate exploration.

This “Aha” moment led us to launch the Denzity Forum last month with a handful of users and experts. Not only that, users found the answers useful, the experts found the information exchange meaningful! So, we have decided to expand our scope from real estate fractional ownership to include more segments of the real estate sector. Our top priority in 2020 is to broaden this community by empowering a cosmopolitan environment that gives you access to a growing range of insights and projects directly from experts worldwide. We believe this direction will significantly benefit you and the real estate sector worldwide in the long run. 

We are excited about next year! If you want to find real estate insights, find potential real estate projects, or connect with link-minded real estate enthusiasts and real estate experts, then our platform can help you to achieve your goal. 

Find more about the forum here: https://forum.denzity.io/topic/130/year-end-review-2019

Wish you a Happy Holidays and talk to you again in 2020,

Darren

Co-founder, Denzity

3 Biggest Technology Trends The Real Estate Sector Must Embrace

3 Biggest Technology Trends The Real Estate Sector Must Embrace

We recently shared PropTech: Past, Present, and Future and The Forces That Will Shape The Future of Real Estate Investing, our view on how PropTech could impact the real estate sector. Today, we want to share our thoughts on three technological trends the real estate sector will need to embrace. Are you ready? Let’s dive in! 

Market research 
Real estate market research has typically been a tedious and time-consuming process, which is why companies like CoStarReal Capital Analytics, and Realinflo have spawned to utilize technology to provide investors with insights. Social listening, AI, and big data will play a significant role in PropTech companies to compile and deliver tailored analysis to their customers. For example, Realinflo has compiled the largest and most up-to-date database of leases in Hong Kong over the last 2 years.

Sourcing projects 
As the number of online real estate portals, such as ZillowRedfin, and Spacious have spawned for investors to find residential properties online, the vast array of offerings in different real estate types serves to meet a diversity of investor demand. It’s only a matter of time before investors access a single portal to access all types and sizes of real estate opportunities around the world. If you are a real estate broker and not utilizing these portals, you are going to miss out!

Fundraising projects 
Real estate firms that have embraced the new ways to fundraise (e.g. real estate fractional ownership) are leading the wave of technological and regulatory advancement in real estate. Leaders such as Property PartnerBlend Network, and iFunded are providing investors with access to a broader range of projects with more flexible contribution amounts. Owning a fraction of a fancy hotel or a beautiful vineyard with a couple of thousand dollars? Count me in! 

The Missing Piece 
While tons of companies are working on different problems within the real estate investment process, nobody is working on bridging the gap bring these real estate portals together. Why is it important? Investors often shy away from the fragmented and complex real estate industry – known to be costly, inefficient, and scattered. A single portal would serve and evolve around the needs of its core user base of everyday investors.

Someone needs to address the huge pain point with real estate investment: streamlining the investor’s journey from a matter of weeks down to a few days.

We at Denzity have the answer. 

The solution is to act as the glue – collaborating with different partners (such as real estate databases, project providers, and experts) to enhance the investor’s experience and allow investors to have better-informed decisions throughout their exploration based on their criteria. By having access to this ecosystem, real estate investors can explore the world of real estate investing all in one place effortlessly and unlock their full potential.  

What is your biggest pain point? What innovation do you hope to see more of within the real estate sector? Let us know in the comments below.

Above and beyond,

Darren
Co-founder, Denzity

WeWork – A Cautionary Tale For All PropTech Players

As the year of 2019 draws to a close, it’s hard to forget one of the biggest lessons learned in the business world: WeWork’s failed IPO at USD 47 billion leaving SoftBanks to intervene with a ‘stimulus package’, which leaves WeWork at a valuation today of USD 10-12 billion.

For those interested in reading more into WeWork’s story, here are some informative pieces: Feedough’s “WeWork Business Model, an in-depth analysis of WeWork’s business model; Harvard Business Review’s “No, WeWork Isn’t A Tech Company. Here’s Why That Matters, which breaks down WeWork’s ‘taboo’; and Bloomberg’s video “The Spectacular Rise and Fall of WeWork to get a better grasp of the situation.

From this saga, we hope PropTech players take a step back and re-evaluate three important lessons:

1. Are you In the tech business or real estate business
Many start-ups often frame themselves as tech companies in hopes to obtain a higher valuation from a larger pool of potential investors. A business should only be classified as tech-driven only if the core business is selling tech as a product or service, as the high valuations associated with technology companies are their ability to generate enormous profits and scale at a fast speed with relatively low investment. In our view, WeWork is not a tech company and they should be frank with their investors to manage expectations.

2. The potential impact of the proprietary technology
It is hard to understand how much tech has played a part in WeWork’s business. WeWork claimed that they employed data analytics and another smart tech to improve the efficiency of their spaces, how people use their spaces, and where to build next. Yet, isn’t this the knowledge and insights provided by real estate experts (such as brokers)? While we associate the utilization of technology as helping businesses make better decisions, there is a vast array of tech companies that don’t necessarily deliver on this promise – WeWork included.

3. The recession threat
Some people argue that the sole reason WeWork failed was because of bad timing – this is partly true as WeWork is a subleasing business – while others argue WeWork failed to build proprietary technologies to protect itself during a recession – partly true assuming you agree WeWork utilizes technology in its core business.

In our view, WeWork’s expansion into other types of real estate improves diversification depending on its mix. For example, expanding the number of gyms increases risk during a recessionary period, as their occupancy suffers on account of fewer active memberships. However, owning hospitals and public-funded schools would be ‘defensive’ and improve WeWork’s resilience during a recession as these segments would ‘operate as normal’. If WeWork were developed as a technology company, they should have allocated more attention and effort on developing tech to lower their cash burn to ensure their clients stick around during bad times.

WeWork is a big lesson that should not be ignored. We hope PropTech players have not lured down a similar path in losing sight of their core focus: building technologies that impact and transforms the real estate industry.


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You can sign up to the forum here: https://forum.denzity.io/

The Forces That Will Shape The Future of Real Estate Investing

Global funding in PropTech reached more than USD 4 Billion in 2019, according to Pitchbook. It’s worth considering how technological advancements will shape the future of real estate investing. “The Inevitable: Understanding The 12 Technological Forces That Will Shape Our Future”, a book by Kevin Kelly, founding executive editor of Wired magazine and one of the leading technology thinkers of our generation, forecasted technological imperatives that will shape and transform our society over the next thirty years. More specifically, 3 out of the 12 forces, mentioned in the book, will inevitably transform real estate investing on a massive scale: the force of sharing, filtering, and questioning.

Sharing
We now live in a world of abundant information – with just a few clicks away, internet services (like Google or Wikipedia) demonstrate the power of networking effect. Technology can enhance collaboration within a community on a mass-scale. Experts, from different parts of the world with different expertise, share their knowledge freely to foster better collaboration.
 
Filtering
With the abundance of choices we are exposed to, it is impossible to assess everything ourselves. Filtering is needed to select the few but right things we should pay attention to. With the combination of crowdsourcing, expert curators, and technology advancement, real estate investors can harness strong personalization to obtain tailored suggestions and the best available projects that suit their appetite.
 
Questioning
“Every year we ask the Internet a trillion questions, and every year the search engines give back a trillion answers,” says Kevin Kelly. The future technologies will unleash enormous big questions that we could have never thought to ask before. Promoting the freedom to ask good quality questions are far more valuable than good answers. Real estate investors will constantly explore to ask unique personalized questions to find the best result.
 
We at Denzity believe those phenomena will fill the gap – providing better-informed decisions to real estate investors for their increasing appetite for cross-border diversification. As such, we constantly challenge ourselves during our product design on how we can deliver a better experience for your exploration in the world of real estate investing. 

If you enjoy this post, please share it with a friend! 

What do you want more or less of? Other suggestions? Let us know! Please give us feedback on our forum.

PropTech: Past, Present, and Future.

PropTech: Past, Present, & Future

It’s no secret that real estate is one of the largest industries in the world, yet it is one of the last to adopt the technology. It is no surprise that a large number of startups have spawned to tackle this industry. Beyond headline-grabbing companies like Compass, Opendoor, and Airbnb, critical problems remain in our industry that entrepreneurs are yet to solve.

Since the 1980s, there have been three major waves in PropTech (Property Tech).

Early PropTech from 1980 to 2000: With the introduction of basic solutions such as Excel, real estate companies began to implement enterprise software solutions in their workflow to drive more quantitative approaches to their investments and portfolio management (such as Yardi, CoStar, and Loopnet). These solutions tend to be closed-form while requiring heavy customization.

PropTech 1.0 from 2001 to 2007: With the increasing demand to seek information, real estate online aggregators emerge (such as Redfin, Zillow, and Trulia). Like other social media and e-commerce portals, these online aggregators allow users to find incumbent information by leveraging their cross-sided network effects.

PropTech 2.0 from 2008 to 2019: As consumer-preferred access over ownership (the shared economy movement), companies (such as Airbnb, Opendoor, and PurpleBricks) are focused on improving user experience and participation. 

PropTech 3.0 from present to beyond: According to CB Insights, venture funding in PropTech from 2008 to 2018 has increased from USD 20 Million to more than USD 4 Billion. The increasing interest in PropTech has grown considerably as many pain points still exist.

We at Denzity believe the fragmented and inefficient process in real estate transactions need to be addressed and solved. Firstly, as investors have access to limited information and data set, they still rely on their intuitions when making an investment. Secondly, there is a lack of investment options that investors can access. Therefore, we want to introduce solutions to digitize workflows and elevate the transparency so that better investment decisions can be made.

Denzity Forum is one of the solutions that seek to solve a real estate investor’s pain point on understanding how to carry out the due diligence process properly before investing in a real estate project. The forum is always improving, and we always challenge ourselves to make it as easy to use as possible.

You can sign up to the forum here: https://forum.denzity.io/

Thanks for staying tuned and speak to you soon.

Darren

Co-Founder, Denzity


Finding The Right Experts

Denzity. Find the right experts

Whenever my buddies and I are geeking out on real estate investments, we always share what we learned and why we think our projects have potential. The truth is that not many people (like us) understand how to carry out the due diligence process properly before investing in a real estate project. Denzity Forum helps you find tailored advice directly from experts.

In our previous post [https://bit.ly/343bMiV], we described how Denzity Forum works. I want to give you a better idea of what kind of experts you would need.

Good due diligence starts by finding the right experts experienced in pointing out key things to consider. Experts involved in a real estate transaction typically include brokers, surveyors, lawyers, asset and property managers, tax advisors, appraisers, financiers, developers, and so on. 

Real estate in different regions carry attributes that require specific knowledge to better evaluate an investment. As the market becomes more competitive, each type of professional has specialized their domain.

For example, brokers may specialize in a specific property type, size or location, with their own strategic expertise. When facing a mountain of investment opportunities, each with a different angle, it’s important to ask questions in an inclusive community of experts to share their knowledge with you.

Whenever you post a question on Denzity Forum, we reach out to experts we have worked with or been referred to. Our goal is to find you the best quality answers. If we feel your question should have multiple sources, we invite multiple experts to provide you with different perspectives. By crowdsourcing information from multiple sources, you can make a better-informed decision of what your preferred projects are.

I can’t wait for you to start using Denzity Forum. We hope every time you visit our community-driven forum, you gain better insights and knowledge for your exploration.

You can sign up to the forum here: https://forum.denzity.io/

Thanks for staying tuned and speak to you soon.

Darren 

Co-Founder, Denzity

Real Estate Investment Insights And Access A Global Community Of Experts

We started Denzity to help users learn about the real estate fractional ownership (“REFO”) industry and its impending impact.

However, there are many concerns when it comes to real estate investing, such as insufficient information, lack of options, and liquidity. Investors should also take into consideration market trends and outlooks, legal structure, tax regulations, benchmarking, and due diligence. 

From my experience, a lot of people are interested in real estate investing but (frankly) don’t know where to start. This is why we are launching Denzity Forum. Our forum allows you to post specific questions (in real estate investing) and we find experts to share their insights. 

Think Quora for real estate investing. 

For example,

“I am a Hong Kong citizen and looking to invest in real estate based in Vancouver. What type of tax would I be subject to?”

“I want to look into properties in France. What is the investing procedure that might be different?”

“I have a budget of HKD 500,000. Where can I buy a nice vacation house in Spain?”

To find the answer, you’d typically need to contact a few brokers & professionals with the hopes they have that knowledge. On Denzity, it’s our job to find the right experts for you!

Our current direction is to bridge a community of like-minded, real estate enthusiasts with experts around the world. By enabling greater in exploring the global real estate investment world, make your money generate better returns with real estate exposure. 

You can sign up for the forum here: https://forum.denzity.io/

Thanks for staying tuned and speak to you soon.

Darren 

Co-Founder, Denzity

How Real Estate Fractional Ownership Platforms Work

Real estate fractional ownership (“REFO”) makes investing in real estate more accessible by lowering the minimum investment amount committed by each investor. Regardless of your net worth, you can now benefit from real estate’s potential for generating consistent cash flow and long-term capital appreciation. The REFO industry includes real estate crowdfunding, peer to peer lending, and security token offering. The REFO platform identifies the real estate investment, based on their expertise and preference, then conduct the necessary due diligence. Subsequently, the platform sets a timeline to raise the required fund amount and makes the project information available to investors. The investors are given a period If the investors want to invest, they then pool their money together (with less than HKD 200,000) and acquire a piece of real estate which is managed by a professional asset and property management team. That’s how a REFO platform works!

Even though this new real estate investing method allows more people to have real estate ownership, it is time-consuming and difficult to evaluate great quantities of real estate investments. An investor needs to be aware of many aspects (I.e. market trends and outlooks, legal structure and tax regulations, insights into the opportunities and investment due diligence process, etc.). Frankly, a lot of people desire to partake in real estate investing, but they do not know where to start! Denzity is here to help you.

If you have other questions related to real estate investing, you can let us know by filling out the survey here: https://forms.gle/vYAduHAeWkJ57ueC8.

Thanks for staying tuned and speak to you soon.

Darren 

Co-Founder, Denzity