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RESIDENTIAL PROPERTY | Staff Reporter, Singapore
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Three property agencies launch real estate online platform

ERA Realty, Huttons Asia, and PropNex Realty are releasing two apps and one portal under the SOREAL umbrella.

ERA Realty, Huttons Asia, and PropNex Realty launched an online platform for real estate salespersons and consumers through the SOREAL umbrella, where there will be two different apps and a portal: RealAgent App, RealHome App, and the SOREAL Prop portal.

According to a joint statement, the leaders of the three agencies, Jack Chua (ERA Realty), Goh Kee Nguan (Huttons Asia), and Ismail Gafoor (PropNex Realty) first initiated the idea of SOREAL in early 2016 as they gathered usual feedback from real estate salespersons on the current challenges faced when subscribing to property portals for their business. “Some of the challenges include duplicated listings, high subscription and increasing fees, and outdated information not refreshed in real time,” they said.

SoReal Prop offers platforms for both salespersons and consumers. Salespersons will be equipped with the RealAgent APP to serve their clients in real-time. SoReal Prop technology platform serves as the central repository for property data and hosting vetted listings.

“The portal governs the data by using technologies and controllers together with the Property Consortium mandated by the real estate agencies and their leaders. Provided by its sources, using technology and controllers in information, SoReal Prop controls incoming and outgoing data for both the salespersons and consumers,” the statement said.

Through SOREAL, real estate salespersons can consolidate their apps to a single platform with its all-encompassing features available. Besides the ability to retrieve more accurate and clearer information, they can also generate detailed property reports digitally, manage Clients queries and appointments, view, schedule or request to attend open houses online, share property information, listings and documents seamlessly via the portal and many more.

The information and listings posted will be of real-time, powered by updates by the collective 15,000 over salespersons from ERA Realty, Huttons Asia, PropNex Realty and other agencies who are in the talks of coming onboard as well.

ERA Realty CEO Jack Chua commented, “In times of digital disruptions, the three of us knew that the time is right to work together to embrace innovation and technology and add value to industry stakeholders. We wanted to create an effective platform that can provide transparent and fast information that would be beneficial for consumers, salespersons and even property developers.”

Access to the RealAgent app and portal will be free for all real estate salespersons for a year and will subsequently be priced affordably in the future. This will help the lower existing cost of business for salespersons, making it an attractive substitute for existing major property apps in the industry which are relatively highly priced.

For property buyers and sellers in Singapore, the RealHome app will allow them to rate and review their salespersons after a successful transaction. The public can also choose the best fit salespersons and view testimonials from previous clients before engaging their services. In addition, they can also search through the listings available in the portal and connect with the salespersons handling the units.

Huttons Asia CEO Goh Kee Nguan also noted that the ratings system is a good way to recognize the professional salespersons and raise the bar of great service in the industry. “As property is usually a big-ticket investment, consumers would want to be assured that they have the right person to help handle the transaction smoothly throughout their sale or purchase. The online ratings and testimonials ‘reward’ well-deserving salespersons who performed to the best of their abilities in their transactions. Through this transparent sharing, it will inadvertently raise the level of professionalism amongst salespersons in the industry who will strive for great reviews from their clients on the portal,” he said.

The three agencies noted that as they are also part of the new Digitalised Property Transactions Workgroup led by Council for Estate Agencies (CEA), there will be mutual flow of information between agencies and CEA on the ground feedback derived from the usage of the portal. This “could help improve processes to provide seamless and secure transactions for consumers in the long run,” the three said.

PropNex Realty CEO Ismail Gafoor noted that as consumers can access a plethora of information about properties in the market online, salespersons leveraging on just digital platforms by itself is not sufficient in today’s real estate market. “It is also vital for real estate salespersons to perform a more advisory role and be endowed with in-depth knowledge of the current market in order to advise a client effectively,” he said.

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