HomeSpotlightWe may have to change the way we do business in 2022

We may have to change the way we do business in 2022

You can’t expect people to be patient anymore – no matter in what sense you are using the word “patient” – either as adjective or as noun. Two years are too long a period to spend in fear with physical movements and social activities being restricted. Though situation is much better now than that was prevailing in 2020 it cannot be termed as normal. Meanwhile, full fledged vaccination and the reports that new variant is milder than earlier variants have given scope for some hope in 2022.

Thus, despite the chaos like situation the year holds some promise both on Covid front as well as in other areas. During the year we may get know the answers many interesting questions. Some of them are discussed here:

Will crypto boom sway realty sector?

As we are seeing Crypto boom, everyone from business entrepreneurs to techno enthusiasts is mulling over the potential of digital currency in facilitating the daily transactions. Considering its popularity even the real estate transactions may be swayed by the new currency. Meanwhile, successive events like demonetisation, introduction of GST and now Covid induced lockdowns have forced the real estate industry to move on the path of digitisation. Today, real estate leaders are actively investing in cloud-based technologies, AI & ML-based analytics platforms, digital walkthroughs and virtual reality, marketing automation, and much more.

Elsewhere in the world digital currencies are slowly and gradually gaining ground in the real estate industry. In some of the international cities, paying property fees and taxes crypto currencies has already started. Not just that, a few big ticket size deals in properties, yacht, and luxury items have been concluded via crypto. Sooner or later Indian real estate industry too may have to fall in line and start accepting digital currencies. Since we are known to be slightly slower in accepting new practices crypto currencies may not come in vogue soon but may take some more time as the legal sanctity is not yet granted for the same.

However, on the negative side it should be remembered that digital currencies do not create any cash flows and their appreciation is primarily subject to speculative forces. Also, their value is subject to fluctuations, much faster than foreign currencies, which may deter many developers in accepting them as legal currency.

Will blockchain become popular?

Many people have heard about blockchain technology in the context of cryptocurrencies, but it can be used in a number of other ways as well. No doubt blockchain is considered to be the parent technology of crypto currency but it has wider applications and is also already being used in many sectors. In real estate sector, for example, Distributed Ledger Technologies is being adopted by many because of its hacking resistance qualities and also utility. It should be noted that blockchain can offer a seamless encrypted platform to facilitate safe and transparent real estate transactions, especially in fractional ownership of commercial assets, rental homes, holiday homes, etc. Through tokenisation of real estate assets, it can also facilitate NRI transactions.

In fact, blockchain is a good platform, as has been found by some realtors, to digitise key information related to property purchases such as deed history, transaction history, legal documents, technical information, maintenance track record, etc. Utility of blockchain technology will multiply in case of green buildings as different features of the structure can easily be made available.

Blockchain is a transparent, decentralized technology. Any information stored on the blockchain is accessible to all peers on the network, which builds trust and security right into the system. In short, blockchains along with crypto currencies can completely change the way real estate businesses are being transacted. Though it may not happen in one go in 2022, some indicators to that effect may happen in the coming days.

Impact of Metaverse on architecture

The metaverse has become a hot topic of debate in recent times, with Facebook and Microsoft both staking claims. Metaverse is a combination of multiple elements of technology, including virtual reality, augmented reality and video where users “live” within a digital universe.

Architects may have to reconstruct their business model to provide products or services that can be produced on a large scale instead of providing one-to-one services and may have to think of providing design solutions that can be used repeatedly and benefit millions of users, not just meet the requirements of one customer.

For architects, the metaverse is a virgin land full of possibilities and a utopia free from the limitations of the real world. Architects can provide unique designs for customers who want to collect unique assets based on NFT (non-fungible tokens). Architects can also build various digital assets such as cities, buildings, furniture, sculptures, point clouds, and materials, and sell them repeatedly in virtual worlds, virtual games or virtual movies. But according to Mark Zuckerberg, the CEO of the newly named Meta (formerly Facebook), it could take five to 10 years before the key features of the metaverse become mainstream. But aspects of the metaverse currently exist. Ultra-fast broadband speeds, virtual reality headsets and persistent always-on online worlds are a necessity which is yet to become universal in India. So, it will be too early to expect substantial developments on this front in 2022.

On the whole, architects need to be on their toes to know and if possible, implement in their profession the latest technological and digital advancements in the coming years. Many such technical advancements can help them to increase their efficiency and at the same time may render many of the conventional tools redundant. So, upgradation of knowledge should be a constant and consistent process.

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