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Spanish proptech firm AREX moves HQ to Toronto

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IMAGE: Pablo Garnica is the chief operating officer and co-founder of AREX. (Courtesy AREX)

Pablo Garnica is the chief operating officer and co-founder of AREX. (Courtesy AREX)

AREX, a Spanish real estate software company and one of 10 companies chosen to participate in last year’s Colliers Proptech Accelerator program, is moving its headquarters to Toronto.

After taking part in the three-month program that concluded in the city last month, “we realized (Toronto) was an extremely fertile environment for tech startups,” said Pablo Garnica, chief operating officer and co-founder of AREX. “There was a lot of inclusion” in Toronto, he says, which “we hadn’t encountered back in Europe.”

The Madrid-based startup is setting up shop in its new downtown Toronto office this month.

The 2019 version of the Colliers Proptech Accelerator program received hundreds of applications from more than 50 countries. The 10 companies chosen hailed from six countries.

The accelerator program is designed to help proptech companies refine business plans and gain global real estate perspectives through access to more than 120 mentors from Colliers International, startup accelerator Techstars and the broader real estate, technology and investment industries.

Create digital transaction process

AREX’s stated mission is “to fully digitalize the transaction process end-to-end, transforming the real estate market into what the financial market is nowadays, a liquid, efficient and transparent market.”

To that end, AREX has developed DOMUS, a real estate software tool that aims to make the commercial real estate experience much more efficient, so “people can actually focus on doing the best deals possible and not worry about the actual execution,” Garnica said.

While technology in most sectors has advanced over the last few decades, “somehow real estate kind of missed that train,” Garnica said. “So we’re trying to bring real estate to the same level as any other industry.”

He said while portions of the real estate transaction process have been digitized, the industry still makes use of faxes and a lot of paper.

There are also many inconsistencies in commercial real estate transactions. If the process could be standardized, “it’ll actually make the real estate world a better world.”

How AREX saves time . . . and money

The software is now in its pilot phase and a full-fledged version is set to launch at the end of February.

DOMUS aims to speed up transaction preparation times and reduce time spent on manual work by using prearranged templates.

Pilot testing has found the software allows for about eight to 12 times less time spent on low value-added tasks – like updating Excel sheets or creating presentations.

Garnica said the value added by the tool has exceeded clients’ expectations.

“We know we’ve done our job when the people that use our tool can’t think of going back to what they were doing before.”

The software is best-suited for complex commercial transactions with multiple participants, Garnica said. It is compatible for both real estate owners and brokers.

Real estate is “people shaking hands and making deals. So, we thought that rather than focus on specific transactions or asset types, let’s focus on empowering the user, the person who actually does real estate.”

Integrated platforms, blockchain protection

The platform integrates services like Excel, Gmail and Outlook: “We’re trying to make it as seamless and as integrated as possible.”

DOMUS also makes use of blockchain to manage, store and protect information and to certify documents.

“It allows us to have a ledger of what’s happened in a transaction, who has done what and the contents of documents,” Garnica said.

Users pay an initial set-up charge for integration and training, and then a monthly fee. Minimal training is required to use the tool.

“People in real estate were already making money. So in order to ask someone to change the way they do things, they have to want to use the tool.”

AREX’s competitors include Real Capital Markets and Dealpath along with software developed in-house by corporations, all of which have different approaches and philosophies.

As a result of its participation in the accelerator program, AREX is working with a Colliers International team in London, as well as a brokerage in Mexico and semi-public bodies in Spain.  

Garnica says the accelerator program opened many doors. 

Why AREX is moving to Toronto

“In the space of three months, we had over 200 interactions with extremely talented, successful mentors in the real estate and tech communities,” he said.

“It’s really helping us sidestep mines that other people have stepped on. It also helped us challenge the way we think about our business and what our goals are.”

Many of the people he encountered during the program wanted AREX to do well “and that’s something that was very sort of contagious.”

Garnica said setting up shop in Toronto allows AREX to qualify for the federal government’s Start-up Visa Program.

“We’re also much closer to the decision-makers in the real estate world which reside between New York, Toronto and Chicago. So, Toronto was the best combination of both worlds.”

Prior to co-founding AREX in 2018, Garnica worked in investment banking at Goldman Sachs in London. He’s lived in a number of countries aside from the U.K., including Spain, Mexico, U.S., Switzerland and Italy.

The AREX name was chosen because it was thought that starting it with an A would make the company more top of mind with people. The RE stands for “real estate” and the X for “exchange.”

Garnica says AREX has encountered less pushback to its software than was expected.

“I think there’s a general feeling of urgency to bring the real estate sector up to date,” he said. “There’s no question that change is needed.”

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Best Real Estate Shares Five Ways To Increase Trust In Your Ad Campaigns – Net Newsledger

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When it comes to online advertising, gaining the trust of your audience is critical. If people don’t trust you, the experts at Best Real Estate in Tampa, Florida, say they won’t buy from you. This article will discuss five ways to increase your ad campaigns’ trust and boost sales!

Trust is essential for ad campaigns because it helps connect the advertiser and the consumer. When consumers see an ad, they need to trust that the advertised product or service is legitimate and that they won’t be ripped off if they purchase it. This can be difficult for advertisers, as many unscrupulous companies are more than happy to take advantage of unsuspecting consumers.

However, Best Real Estate experts say a few things advertisers can do to help build trust with their audience. First, they can be transparent about their product or service, clearly explaining what it is and how it works. Second, they can use testimonials from satisfied customers to show that their product or service delivers on its promises. Finally, they can provide a money-back guarantee to show that they stand behind their product or service. By taking these steps, advertisers can help build trust with their audience and ultimately increase sales.

In the past, advertisers have not been entirely transparent about how they create and place ads. As a result, there has been a lot of mistrust between brands and consumers. However, increased transparency will help to increase trust in advertising campaigns. When consumers understand how ads are created and placed, they are more likely to trust the campaign and the brand.

Additionally, Best Real Estate professionals say transparency helps build relationships between brands and consumers. When brands are open and honest about their advertising, consumers are more likely to feel closer to the brand and be more likely to purchase its products. Therefore, transparency is essential for increasing trust in ad campaigns.

Another way to increase trust in your ad campaigns is to use customer reviews. Customer reviews are a form of social proof, which is when people see that others are using and enjoying a product, they are more likely to want to use it themselves. Therefore, by featuring customer reviews in your ads, you can show potential customers that your product or service is trustworthy and worth their time.

Additionally, customer reviews help to build credibility for your brand. When potential customers see that other people have had positive experiences with your brand, they are more likely to trust it and be willing to try its products.

As mentioned above, social proof is essential in increasing trust in ad campaigns. Social proof is the idea that people are more likely to trust a product or service if they see that others are using and enjoying it.

One way to create social proof for your ad campaign is to feature testimonials from satisfied customers. Testimonials are a great way to show potential customers that your brand can be trusted and that you have happy customers.

Another way to create social proof is to show media mentions of your brand in your ads. If you’ve been featured in any news articles, magazines, or other publications, mention it in your ad! This will help increase trust by showing potential customers that your brand is credible and has been noted by reputable sources.

You can create social proof and increase trust in your brand by featuring testimonials and media mentions in your ad campaigns.

Ad campaigns can be a great way to promote your product or service. However, ensuring that your ad campaigns are adequate is essential to get the most return on investment. There are a few key things to keep in mind when creating ad campaigns:

Define your target audience

Who are you trying to reach with your ads? When you know your target audience, you can create ads that are more likely to resonate with them.

What are you trying to achieve with your ad campaign? Are you looking to increase brand awareness, drive traffic to your website, or generate sales? When you know your goal, you can create ads that are more likely to achieve it.

Where will you be placing your ads? There are various advertising platforms, each with its strengths and weaknesses. You’ll need to choose the medium most likely to reach your target audience and help you achieve your goal.

By following these tips, experts at Best Real Estate say you can create ad campaigns that are more likely to succeed. Keep these things in mind as you complete your next marketing campaign!

Ad campaigns can be a great way to promote your product or service. However, ensuring that your ad campaigns are adequate is vital to get the most return on investment. When creating ad campaigns, the key things to remember are defining your target audience, determining your goals, and choosing the right platform. By following these tips, you can create ad campaigns more likely to succeed.

Best Real Estate is a company focused on providing innovative marketing solutions for real estate professionals. For more information on their products and services, please visit the official site at https://bit.ly/bestrealsystem

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B.C. real estate prices dip for fourth straight month – Business in Vancouver

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Compared to last summer, prices are still up 3.6% in B.C. | Photo via Artie Photography (Artie Ng) / Getty Images

B.C. real estate prices have fallen for a fourth straight month, shaving about 4% off their value from June, transaction statistics show.

Average home sale prices across the province are now down 15.7% in July — sitting at about $920,000 — as compared to the market’s latest peak in March, when the average price was nearly $1.1 million.

Prices in the Fraser Valley have fallen the most of any region in B.C. since March — 20.5%, as the average unit now sells for just over $1 million.

“High mortgage rates continued to lower sales activity in July,” said BC Real Estate Association chief economist Brendon Ogmundson Thursday in his monthly market update for July.

“Many regions around the province have seen sales slip to levels well below normal for this time of year,” added Ogmundson.

Compared to last summer, prices are still up 3.6% in B.C.; however, prices are trending to a point where they will soon see a year-over-year decline, after peaking at 24.9% gains in March.

Active July listings of 31,386 remain below the estimated 38,000 needed for long-term market balance. Last July there were 24,473 listings.

Sales volume is down 42% year over year, from $8.6 billion worth of transactions in July 2021 to $5.2 billion last month. More properties sold in B.C. last January (6,138) than they did in July (5,572).

Chilliwack and the Fraser Valley saw the biggest drops in year-over-year sales, with declines of 57% and 50%, respectively.

The association noted that as the pace of sales activity declines below normal levels, inventory is accumulating.

“Inventories remain quite low, but the slow pace of sales has tipped some markets into balanced or even buyers’ market territory,” stated the association.

In an effort to curb inflation, sitting at 8.1% in June, the Bank of Canada has increased interest rates from 0.25% in January to 2.5% in July and another rate hike is expected Sept. 7. The bank has stated it is targeting a 3% or 3.25% rate by the end of the year, which will further erode homebuyers’ qualifying levels.

gwood@glaciermedia.ca

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Real estate downturn could be good news for Sault home buyers – SooToday

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RBC – Canada’s largest bank – foresees the country’s real estate bubble popping with a big downturn in both sales and prices.

With inflation pushing lending rates up, those rising rates are expected to cool down the real estate market.

As reported earlier, local home sales were down significantly in July as compared to July 2021 but the average price was still up at $320,314 – a 20.3 per cent increase from last year.

While RBC forecasts the overnight rate will climb to 3.25 per cent by October, the bank and real estate industry experts see the anticipated downturn in prices as a correction and a welcome change.

“What we’re experiencing in Sault Ste. Marie is more of a market stability, which to me is a good thing because it’s allowing buyers to have a little more power to buy a home,” said Jonathan Mogg, Sault Ste. Marie Real Estate Board president. 

That could turn out to be good news for first time home buyers in the Sault, some of whom lamented back in March that out of town home buyers, many from southern Ontario, were paying big money for homes in the Sault, those buyers either GTA residents eager to relocate away from the hustle and bustle or absentee buyers purchasing Sault homes and renting them out.

That trend squeezed out many Sault residents desiring to buy a house in their hometown.

“That seems to be cooling off,” Mogg told SooToday.

“Big time investors will always be in play, people who are in southern Ontario and decide that they want to invest in housing but can’t afford that market so it’s been pushing those kinds of people up north. But we’re noticing that with the interest rates going up there’s a lot less of those types of investors entering the local market, so that’s positive.”

“It’s kind of hit a point where a lot of people have cooled off on the idea of investing in housing so that’s good for the local people because now they’re starting to have a chance at buying a home again,” Mogg said.

“What I’m noticing is that a lot of buyers who were previously disillusioned are starting to come out of the woodwork and getting excited about trying to buy a house again. That’s awesome because these are people who had tried previously and the market was just too hot for them at the time. Now they’re seeing things cool off a little bit so it’s spurring them to say ‘okay, now’s the time I’m actually going to buy a house, this is it.’”

“It’s good to see that,” Mogg said.

Mogg said renting a home is still an option for those who can afford it because the average three bedroom bungalow in Sault Ste. Marie’s price is approximately $320,000 – making it hard for anyone with a budget under that amount.

That can cost between $1,500 and $2,000 a month.

That’s not the best option for most people, but the option is there for those who have the cash.

As far as apartment rentals are concerned, rates for two bedroom apartments in the Sault cost at least $1,300 a month.

Though realtors naturally prefer people to buy homes as opposed to renting them or renting apartments, Mogg said “it goes beyond a professional thing. Being a member of this community I want everybody to have the chance to have good quality housing.”

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