In real estate, the terms opportunities and threats are not associated with a company’s internal environment or processes. Instead, an opportunity is everything that we can take advantage of the external environment that at a certain point will bring some gain to the company, whether it is from rental or home sales.
Threats are negative external aspects that jeopardize business plans and objectives. The idea of the terms is to give managers a view beyond the four walls of the business.
Companies with good real estate management anticipate the signs presented in the market and tend to be successful in relation to those that do not adopt this practice. An easy way to understand the external environment is to investigate everything that involves the macroenvironment and the microenvironment.
The macroenvironment is composed of non-controllable external variables. That is, these variables may or may not impact the management of your real estate and, often, we have nothing to do. However, the fact that they are not controllable does not imply a passive attitude. Far from it, your real estate will need to take actions to mitigate or reduce threats or take advantage of opportunities.
For example, in periods of economic crisis, there is a tendency to increase the default rate to pay rent or to sell a home. Realize, we have no way to control the crisis, but knowing about this fact helps when taking some action to mitigate this problem. Among the main variables of the macroenvironment we have:
The microenvironment is composed of both internal and external factors, however, our focus is on the external. The external factors of the microenvironment are also uncontrollable and, unlike the macroenvironment, monitoring is closer. In this case, we are talking about competitors, suppliers, and customers.
For example, launches are always great opportunities to capture new properties for the portfolio.
Losing the opportunity to capture these new properties, at certain times, benefits competition and represents a strong threat to the real estate company’s participation in its market. Let’s cover the concepts of opportunities and threats and see some real examples.
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Common opportunities and threats among real estate companies
Analyzing all the information regarding the business is a difficult task, so a prioritization exercise is necessary. Not all variables add value to real estate management, so we need to focus on what really matters. Let’s see some important variables for real estate companies and some practical examples of how we can have O&A in front of each of them:
Technological. What are the technological features that are on the rise for real estate companies? Is there any tool on the market that can automate and facilitate our processes and activities? Do the leading real estate companies use any software to facilitate their management? In general, new technologies are great opportunities for improvement to do more with less. Therefore, an inattentive look at the novelties and innovations present in the market represents a threat.
Governmental. Is there any law that can harm or benefit my real estate? Are there any investments from the federal or state government that can heat up the market? What are the risks that political instability brings to the market? Observing the movements that occur on the plateau helps to anticipate legislation that may arise. Furthermore, public institutions always provide lines of financing that boost the sector.
Economic. What are the economic projections for the coming year? And inflation remains stable? Has the market’s basic interest rate changed sharply? And is the unemployment rate higher or lower? This variable affects any market segment, so knowing the projections and the current state of the economy helps in the formulation of your real estate strategic planning.
Cultural. Are there any new lifestyles emerging? Has the consumption habit changed? Are people joining any new trends? Knowing people’s trends and consumption habits is a great insight to invest in different types of products and services. A look at the lifestyle of consumers can be extremely useful when building a property portfolio with a focus on customer satisfaction and needs.
Competition. What are the direct competitors? And the indirect ones? How big is your real estate market compared to competitors? What sets you apart from other brands? In your real estate management, get to know the movements of competitors and see how they act. The habit of studying competitors increases your chances of not being surprised and helps in the search for differentiation.