A digital platform that aims to eliminate the problem of dummy, inaccurate, unauthorised, and duplicate property advertisements. An enhanced Continuing Professional Development (CPD) ecosystem that positions real estate salespersons (RESs) to be relevant, digitally savvy and resilient amid change. More support to help the real estate agency industry further transform through digitalisation.
These are just some of the initiatives under the Real Estate Industry Transformation Map (ITM) 2025 that Mr Tan Kiat How, Senior Minister of State, Ministry of National Development and Ministry of Communications & Information, announced on 9 September 2022.
The COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated digital and technological transformation in the real estate industry, and changes in consumer preferences and expectations for property transactions. The Real Estate ITM is one of 23 sectoral ITMs under the ongoing ITM efforts led by the Future Economy Council to address these systematic shifts and seize new opportunities brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic. The Real Estate ITM 2025 is a refresh of the Real Estate ITM launched in 2018, which has already made good progress in enhancing productivity, professionalism and digitalisation within the industry.
Here are four ways estate agents (EAs) and RESs will benefit from Real Estate ITM 2025, which envisions a professional, productive and resilient real estate agency industry.
1. A more productive property search experience for consumers that will also uplift the professional standing of RESs
The Alliance for Action (AfA) on Accurate Property Listings is developing a prototype digital platform. The platform will conduct checks on the authenticity of a property listing and assign a verified number to each property before the RES can advertise the property online. This aims to eliminate the problem of dummy, inaccurate, unauthorised and duplicate advertisements.
The AfA is co-led by the Singapore Estate Agents Association (SEAA), PropertyGuru and 99.co, with the five largest property agencies (PropNex, ERA, Huttons, OrangeTee & Tie, and SRI) and EdgeProp as members.
The protoype platform is targeted for completion by the first quarter of 2023.
2. An enhanced CPD ecosystem to sharpen competencies and digital savviness so that RESs can competently deliver positive property transaction experiences to their clients
CEA has embarked on a study to guide the industry on the required skillsets, competencies and knowledge areas that RESs should be equipped with to prepare for the future economy. Codenamed Project ADEPT (ADvancing and Enhancing Professionalism and Training), the study, which is a collaboration with industry stakeholders, is targeted for completion in 2023.
As part of the project, CEA will review and enhance the entire CPD ecosystem in collaboration with stakeholders: EAs, RESs, industry associations, course providers, the academia and CPD trainers. This will include reviewing the system for quality assurance of CPD courses and providing a differentiated approach to the training of RESs.
The aim is to have a CPD ecosystem with good quality trainers and relevant training courses, where RESs are motivated and have access to opportunities to develop required skillsets, competencies and knowledge areas to deliver their services competently and provide quality service to their clients.
The details on Project ADEPT’s recommendations will be announced in due course.
3. More support for the industry to innovate and digitalise
CEA remains committed to supporting small and medium-sized EAs in their digitalisation journey under the SMEs Go Digital programme and Chief Technology Officer-as-a-Service (CTO-as-a-Service) initiative by the Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA).
The SMEs Go Digital programme allows eligible EAs to adopt pre-approved solutions with funding support, in areas such as document management, transaction records submission, and customer relationship management to increase productivity through digital automation.
The CTO-as-a-Service can help small and medium-sized EAs to self-assess their digital readiness, access market-proven and cost-effective digital solutions, and get complimentary in-depth digital advisory and project management services from qualified consultants.
CEA will also facilitate and support further digitalisation efforts of large-sized EAs.
More details can be found on CEA’s website.
4. A more seamless digital service journey in property transactions
Through the Real Estate ITM launched in 2018, the Digitalised Property Transactions Workgroup (DPTWG) comprising industry stakeholders and public agencies which are involved in property transactions has laid the foundation for industry transformation. This has been achieved through initiatives such as the provision of standard contract templates and checklists, and Application Programming Interfaces (APIs).
The contract templates help to safeguard the interest of parties involved in the transaction as the terms of the contracts are designed to be as fair as possible. The checklists will benefit the industry as they can avoid missing out important due diligence checks for their estate agency work. With automated processes, parties in the transaction can be assured that due diligence checks have been carried out using government-verified data. RESs can also save time and focus on higher-value work.
The DPTWG will continue to digitalise residential property transaction processes through creating a comprehensive digital service journey through the integration of Government property-related portals.
The Real Estate ITM 2025 is a collaborative effort. CEA is partnering our stakeholders to progressively implement the various initiatives. We will be providing regular updates to the industry on the progress of the initiatives, so do look out for them in our blogposts.
You can also read more about the Real Estate ITM 2025 and its initiatives here.
Information accurate as at 23 September 2022