2020 quickly became, and continues to be, the year for virtual tour software and virtual leasing software. For multifamily communities, if you want to compete, it’s a necessity.
However, the definition of virtual touring and virtual leasing has broadened to include a number of valuable video tools. Virtual tour software for real estate includes pre-recorded video tours, live video tours, 3d virtual tours, 360 tour creators, and self-guided tours. There are truly a myriad of options.
For multifamily community owners, managers, and professionals to receive the most out of their software, they need to understand their end goal. Is it to promote the property online and pull people in to engage? Or is it to promote and facilitate connections, conversations, and tours – converting leases more efficiently? Knowing the ultimate goal is the first step in choosing virtual tour creator software.
While the nuanced features a leasing professional should look for in their virtual tour software can vary based on their goals, here are a few features that we think are must-haves.
The best virtual tour software is built for multifamily communities. Period.
Any virtual touring or virtual leasing software should provide seamless integrations into multifamily real estate systems, processes, and procedures. Not only that, but the software must also have the functionality to fully showcase the community, including both the specific units and the community spaces. Then, the software should help the leasing team facilitate meaningful conversations with minimal disruption to the leasing process. After all, virtual tour software needs to make the process more efficient, not complicated.
Fair Housing Compliant
If nothing else, this feature is critical. Make sure that no matter what property virtual tour software is used, the videos are Fair Housing compliant. Most virtual tools do not automatically reflect or include Fair Housing compliance or track the applicant process, making it easy for gaps to arise or mistakes to be made. . If an audit arises, your team must have a traceable record of prospect interactions and communications. With no proof of record, it is the agent’s word versus the prospect.
Avoid risk by simply using a live video tour solution or virtual tour creator that not only records all live tours and saves the recordings to the cloud, but also displays the Equal Housing / ADA logos and disclaimers throughout the tour. To learn more about Fair Housing and the implications with video, click here.
A Seamless Value-Add
Not only should the software help with how to make a virtual tour for real estate, it should make it easy. Tools should add value to the process, not create complicated steps. You should not need to use multiple systems to record, upload, send and save the video. Everything, from pre-recorded virtual video tours to live tours to community update videos, should all live in one, easy to access platform. All systems should pull together in a single, integrated interface that leasing agents can efficiently and seamlessly use. The prospect should also not have to sign up, sign in or complete any extra steps to view their space – it should be completely seamless.
Light on the Equipment
Leasing teams shouldn’t have to buy expensive, bulky equipment to shoot great virtual video tours. Most 3d walkthrough software or 360 virtual tour creators require special cameras and equipment which adds cost and complications. The right virtual tour software should allow agents to record their tours easily, when they want, using their mobile devices. Adding a few, easy-to-use tools can improve the recording quality, but there’s no need for a full light and sound set up to show a prospect a unit in a real, authentic way.
In short, property teams need to look at how they can best equip themselves to connect with prospective residents virtually, no matter their circumstances. Leasing agents need to provide the simple experience that a prospect wants. And the right virtual tour software enables and simplifies this process.