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With each passing year, new technologies for commercial property management enter the market. From drones to smart lockers, you have more options than ever, and their impact on maintenance and tenant satisfaction is impossible to ignore. More than that, these tech-driven solutions are crucial to acknowledge for your continued success.

If you’re going to keep your competitive edge in the coming years, you need to stay current with emerging trends in technology. Commercial tenants are always searching for a modern space where they can grow their business, and they’ll often disregard buildings they deem outdated or insufficient for their future plans.

Fortunately, many of today’s technologies for commercial real estate are accessible. The increasing availability of advanced systems and software have made them less expensive than they were in the past. They no longer place such a financial strain on property managers looking to invest.

With that in mind, where should you allocate your budget? What are the most relevant trends in technology at the present moment? We’ll walk you through everything you need to know, looking at the subject in greater detail.

1. Machine Learning

Artificial intelligence and machine learning have the potential to transform the maintenance process. Machine learning algorithms have already started to help homebuyers find their perfect listings, and now, they’re allowing property managers to overcome some of the industry’s most significant challenges.

More specifically, machine learning and predictive analytics can help with decision making. These technologies have the power to determine your preventative maintenance schedule, anticipate system failures and compare the costs of repairs against replacements. You’ll have far more information at your fingertips.

This represents a shift from the status quo for property and asset management. At the moment, most property managers have their own approach to maintenance or otherwise defer to the recommendations of a contractor. That may soon change with new systems that use data to standardize decisions.

2. Smart Lockers

The meteoric rise of e-commerce presents a challenge for property managers. With more deliveries than ever, you have to refine your former practices to accommodate your tenant’s packages. Fortunately, smart lockers are a simple solution which can alleviate some of the pressure of your responsibilities.

In terms of functionality, the process for receiving a package is relatively straightforward. Through digital programming, your tenant visits the smart locker and accepts their delivery with a private code. Simple as that, they collect their goods and continue with their day, avoiding issues with package theft.

That said, smart lockers are more than just a safety measure, but an incredible convenience. They’re a tech-savvy strategy to simplify delivery in a larger building with a higher number of occupants. With their range of benefits, it’s easy to see why smart lockers are among the top trends in property management tech.

3. Drone Technology

When you hear the word, “drones,” you likely think of their applications in aerial photography. They’re an effective tool for real estate agents and brokers, allowing them to provide clients with a more extensive view of a property. However, agents and brokers aren’t the only real estate professionals who have seen the value in drone technology.

Commercial property managers can employ drones for maintenance purposes. When you fly a drone across your roof, you can search for potential problems while effectively conserving your resources. This increased visibility is excellent for locating issues and making the most efficient use of your maintenance team.

Drones are also capable of offering an extra level of security for commercial properties. They can serve the same function as a security camera, but with far more flexibility in movement. With additional surveillance, a property manager can prevent theft and stop criminal activity before it has a chance to escalate.

4. Localized Energy Resources

Commercial property managers have enjoyed a diverse variety of advantages from localized energy resources. The integration of “microgrids” is especially popular, as they have the potential to lower energy costs, improve efficiency and reinforce your electrical infrastructure. So what exactly are microgrids?

Essentially, they’re a localized grid that connects to a traditional grid or operates on its own. On a switch, it can choose to operate automatically, thus providing reliable power when there are problems with the main grid.

Microgrids are particularly appealing in a sustainability context because they can integrate renewable, storage and efficiency technologies into a unified system. In doing so, a commercial property manager can meet their sustainability goals with less difficulty. That said, microgrids are somewhat complex and demand significant investment.

Tech Trends for Commercial Property Managers

As you consider improvements for your commercial property, give thought to the trends above. Machine learning systems, smart lockers, drones and localized energy resources are all gaining popularity, earning the support of other professionals in your industry. It’s crucial to stay up-to-the-minute with emerging tech.

The tech landscape in commercial real estate will continue to change, of course, but one thing is certain. Commercial property managers need to take full advantage of their available resources to sustain their success as they enter the next decade.

Holly Welles – Freelance Writer

Holly Welles is a freelance writer with experience covering commercial real estate for publishers like Propmodo and Modlar. She also maintains a personal real estate blog, The Estate Update. Find more of her industry work on Twitter.