With new technologies coming out all the time, it can be overwhelming for Realtors® to keep up with the ones that will help them run their business. Craig Grant, international speaker and CEO of the Real Estate Technology Institute, recently shared some tech tools and tricks for Realtors® in a webinar along with PAR President Al Perry.
What’s new for technology in real estate?
“Artificial intelligence to me is the next smartphone, the next internet, the next whatever major technology advance you want to think of that was a generational game changer,” Grant said, highlighting a tech topic that’s been on everyone’s radar lately.
“In my opinion, AI is going to change every aspect of the real estate world, from the way we do our business, to the way CMAs are done,” he added. “I don’t think AI is going to eliminate the Realtor®, but I think it’s going to change every aspect of it.”
Realtors® can use generative AI to draft listings, communications, business and marketing plans, budgeting plans and more. Grant recommended Google’s Bard and well-known ChatGPT for generating text. This can especially help new Realtors® or Realtors® with less background in business.
What are the drawbacks of AI?
While AI can generate a lot of content very quickly, it’s not always right. Grant stressed the importance of checking everything you generate using AI and not leaning too heavily on AI tools.
Because AI generates content from pre-existing content, the content generated may not always be correct. AI-generated text can be factually incorrect, ethically wrong, embarrassing, legally troublesome and biased. It’s important to review everything that comes out of AI.
What other tools can Realtors® use to get more done?
Grant shared an extensive list of applications and software to increase business productivity and success. Here are his favorites and how they can help:
- Avast – antivirus for your computer and mobile devices to keep you safe and secure
- Google Maps and Waze – GPS navigation for traveling real estate professionals
- QuickBooks Self Employed, Hurdlr, Everlance and Expensify – mileage and expense tracking, receipts, tax preparation and more
- TeamViewer – access your devices from anywhere remotely
- HiHello, Blinq, Savvy Card – digital business cards
- Canva – create videos, print materials, social media posts and more on your computer or on your mobile device
- CapCut – video editing online and for mobile devices
- SnapSnapSnap – shoot, organize and edit professional photos for real estate listings
- RPR – provides data, reports, social post templates and more specifically for Realtors®
- Centriq – scan item barcodes (for example, a refrigerator in a home) to learn information on the product’s manufacturer, make and model, release year, instruction manuals, warranties, etc.
- Productive.ai – records, transcribes and summarizes mobile calls and adds tasks from calls to your calendar automatically
Browser extensions can also be helpful tech tools. These add features and functions directly into your internet browser, which can be easily accessed and used to increase efficiency. Extensions will vary by browser, but they usually support common browsers like Google Chrome, Microsoft Edge and Firefox. Some browser extension recommendations from Grant include:
- Nimbus Screen Capture and Screencastify – screen recordings, visual messages, audio recordings, webcam recordings and more
- Grammarly – spellcheck and grammar check for wherever you’re typing
- Magical – build shortcuts to automate and speed up tasks
- TubeBuddy – create, manage and grow your YouTube channel through AI
- AdBlock Plus – block popup ads, which can be annoying and security risks, and remove ads on any website
In general, Grant recommends Google for everyone. With its office suite including Gmail, Google Calendar, Google Docs and thousands of browser extensions, Google is both powerful and user-friendly. Users can pay for Google Workspace to unlock extra storage, features, insights and more for themselves and/or their team.
How do I keep up with all these tech tools?
With all this new technology, it’s easy to get overwhelmed. Grant’s advice was “don’t chase every shiny new thing.” Add one tool at a time and spend time learning how to use it and how it can work for your business.
“You don’t want to be the early adopter on everything and be every new product’s guinea pig helping them figure things out,” he said. “Let the market dictate what tools to go after and let people like me be there to play with a tool and let you know what it’s all about.”
To keep up with new AI and technology tools, Grant suggested:
- Set up Google alerts to keep up with new emerging tech
- Keep up with technology news (he recommends the news app Flipboard)
- Visit WhatTheAI.tech, the largest free AI directory
- Visit his site, RETI.us, for technology updates, events, free weekly webinars and more
Grant will speak about tech topics including scams and AI at next month’s Triple Play Realtor® Convention & Trade Expo. You can view this webinar’s recording online.