Digital Capture of Existing Real Estate: An Overview for Facility Managers and BIM Engineers

The BIM Engineers
25 May 2023

In the world of proptech, digital capture of existing real estate is a crucial tool for enhancing how we invest, build, manage, and improve buildings and property. For facility managers and BIM engineers, understanding the benefits and potential of digital capture can lead to improved lead generation, more efficient operations, and reduced environmental impact.

Digital capture involves using technology to capture digital descriptions of existing buildings and property. This data can then be used to improve owner, investor, and tenant experience during the entire building lifecycle. It can also be used to reduce the environmental impact of real estate, which is a growing concern for both property owners and tenants.

One of the primary benefits of digital capture is the ability to offer virtual tours of existing buildings. These tours can be used by real estate agents to show clients numerous opportunities without any travel costs. Developers can also use virtual tours to give potential investors and tenants a look at buildings that have not yet been constructed.

Virtual tours offer a deeper experience than traditional tours by allowing prospective tenants and investors to view detailed information about the building's dimensions, specifications of existing or proposed building equipment, historical and projected utility data, maintenance records and costs, environmental impact data, and alternate configurations.

Another benefit of digital capture is the potential to reduce the environmental impact of real estate. The EU Taxonomy seeks to bring a coherent, scientific structure to the identification and classification of economic activity and how it impacts the environment. By establishing a common language and reference points, it aims to enable companies, investors, and governments to steer capital towards projects and entities which are protecting and improving the world in which we live.

Digital capture also allows for the integration of smart building hardware, software, and analytics tools, which can significantly reduce energy consumption and maintenance costs. Smart buildings can utilize motion sensors to detect the presence of people in each temperature zone, their level of activity, and adjust temperatures accordingly. They can also adapt to time- and usage-based utility pricing to achieve cost efficiencies.

In addition to reducing costs, digital capture can improve the tenant experience by providing platforms that easily integrate IoT sensors from buildings and connect them to apps with tenant services. Digital tenant apps can provide flexible tenant experience, offering greater access to information such as occupancy levels at the office and control over temperature and lights. They can also automate and simplify rent payments, contract management, and deposit management.

For property managers, digital capture can lower maintenance costs by using proptech to spend wisely, repairing only what needs to be repaired. Linking the maintenance effort to communication tools and reporting for tenants improves communication and lowers turnover.

Real estate agents can also benefit from digital capture by using proptech to increase the pools of buyers and renters and speed up the signing of agreements. When owners link up fintech tools to their proptech platforms, real estate agents can help navigate financing, contract execution, deposit collection, and start dates.

Finally, for software developers, digital capture creates massive opportunities for collecting, storing, and reporting large datasets. Proptech will require integration of platforms via APIs and other tools to allow communication and reporting. Vendors who can efficiently do custom configuration will find success.

In conclusion, digital capture of existing real estate is a crucial tool for facility managers and BIM engineers in the interest phase of lead generation for proptech. By understanding the benefits and potential of digital capture, they can lead the way in improving owner, investor, and tenant experience, reducing environmental impact, and improving the efficiency of building operations.