Efficiency and productivity are critical to the successful survival of today’s commercial real estate appraiser. At the same time, technology innovation in the commercial real estate (CRE) space has lagged relative to other industries. CRE appraisers simply can’t afford lost time experimenting with cobbled-together upgrades wedged into an outdated infrastructure. As Software as a Service (SaaS) providers enter the commercial real estate industry, an all-in-one CRE appraisal platform can offer firms of all sizes increased efficiencies and production volumes previously only achievable at national firms.
What are the key components essential to evaluating an all-in-one CRE appraisal platform?
1. One Place, Accessible Anywhere
First, it is fundamental to have a cloud-based solution available from anywhere for all stages of the appraisal workflow, from intake to invoice. The platform must provide a scalable, easily-searchable, database of all your key data, including sales, leases, surveys, and income/expense comparables. Intuitive dashboards should be included for quick access to the job status of every appraisal, with all the important information at your fingertips. Additionally, one-click professional service agreements and invoicing with hassle-free tracking of accounts receivables are must-haves to fully leverage efficiencies and production gains.
2. Seamless Integration
Fully-integrated, customizable, branded, and USPAP-compliant Excel and Word templates should be provided. One-click importing of property information, comparables, and market data into the valuation template should be standard. Synchronizing charts and text into the appraisal template must be efficient and effortless. Mapping subject and comparable properties should be built in and automatic. Efficiencies add up, allowing appraisers to avoid wasting valuable time and administrative resources, and focus on appraising.
3. Privacy and Security
Privacy and security of data in the cloud are critical today, especially for CRE appraisers who are in possession of sensitive client data. Any SaaS provider should be transparent about how your data is being secured and protected. They should be providing strong encryption, following globally accepted certifications and standards for data protection policies and controls, and have geo-redundant backups stored in multiple locations. Your data should always be protected, secure, and available – and visible only to the people you choose.
4. Training and Support
The availability of training and support are crucial to the success of any software implementation, and are a measure of a provider’s commitment to you and your success. Time-strapped CRE appraisers are continually extracting efficiencies from their tools to increase productivity and require unlimited ongoing support to be included with their software investment, free of charge.
5. Outsourcing Tech Trend
Following the playbook from other industries, commercial real estate firms are outsourcing technology to experts, rather than trying to accel in both tech and CRE. Besides the headache being offloaded, there are efficiencies and productivity gains offered by all-in-one solutions, especially for CRE appraisers, if the right provider is chosen. A cloud-based SaaS platform offers a largely turnkey solution that saves the commitment of your own resources and significantly shortens the implementation time, by offloading the complexity of setup, customization, and maintenance to the provider.
Make Valcre Your Appraisal Platform
The right CRE appraisal platform is a complete software solution that frees appraisers from the burden of tech management. At Valcre, we built the best appraisal technology platform supporting all stages of the appraisal workﬂow. Our cloud-based database stores your data centrally and securely, and gives you complete access, anywhere and anytime. Easily keep track of jobs, clients, properties, sales, leases and expenses. Our robust search and mapping functionality let you find the data you need, when you need it.
Whether you are a solo appraiser or a large firm with many appraisers, assistants, and administrators in multiple offices, keeping your data up to date takes just minutes. With everything organized in one place: your appraisals, files, job due date calendar, comparables, clients, and much more – everyone has a lot more time to focus on what’s important – appraising.
What used to only be available to large firms with huge technology budgets, is now available to everyone – with ease in the cloud. Our industry-leading Software as a Service (SaaS) platform provides end-to-end job tracking and invoicing, one-page data entry, fully-integrated Word and Excel templates, automated mapping, one-click datasheets and summary reports. Valcre leverages a super-efficient system to create higher quality reports and increase the production capacity of every appraiser.