Data Aggregation: A New Frontier in the Global Real Estate Sector

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By Julian Vogel,

Founder & Co-CEO at TOWER360


In an era characterized by rapid technological advancements, Asset Managers are constantly exploring innovative methods and state-of-the-art technologies to elevate their data management competencies. These new tools not only augment their capabilities but also provide them with the edge needed in a competitive marketplace.

The impetus for the digitization and harmonization of real estate data stems from the increasing demands of institutional investors and the rising tide of stringent reporting requirements. For a significant number of Asset Managers, mastering data management is no longer a luxury but a necessity that can provide sustainable competitive advantages in the long run.

Traditionally, Real Estate Asset Managers have heavily relied on Excel to manage their data. This reliance, while convenient, often leads to errors and inefficiencies, and leaves much to be desired in terms of investor reporting.


Challenges in the Status Quo:

The issue is a familiar one in the industry. Property owners typically collaborate with external Property Managers and service providers, each of whom operates on their individual systems like Yardi, MRI, or SAP.

These service providers deliver real estate data to the Asset Manager in diverse data sets at regular intervals. These data sets encompass a broad spectrum, ranging from rent roll, actuals, market data, ESG data, and more.

This marks the beginning of the data integration process for the Asset Manager. It’s commonplace for asset managers to have dedicated internal data teams to manually format this vast array of data for import into their own proprietary systems. This manual process is not only laborious but also susceptible to errors.

Adding to the complexity is the unique landscape of the European market, where language barriers and multiple currencies further complicate the data integration process.

Once imported in the tech stack of the asset manager, the data resides in various siloed systems such as Portfolio Management, ERP System, etc. These systems, while efficient in their individual capacities, do not intercommunicate, thereby limiting the potential for comprehensive evaluations and integrated insights.


Requirements: A Comprehensive Real Estate Data Hub:

In light of these challenges, Real Estate Asset Managers are proactively seeking systems capable of digitalizing the process of data delivery, storage, and consumption.

To meet their needs, the market participants typically outline the following high-level requirements:

Internal and External Data Consolidation:

  • A user-friendly data onboarding portal for external service providers
  • Automated notifications to ensure timely compliance with delivery deadlines
  • Data pipelines to ingest data from internal systems

Data Validation:

  • Robust data validation and quality checks to maintain data integrity
  • Consistency verification to ensure uniformity across data sets
  • Streamlined approval processes and efficient error correction mechanisms

Data Management:

  • Secure archiving and cataloging of the data in a centralized database
  • Real-time data update and versioning to keep the database current
  • Robust data security and privacy measures to protect sensitive information

Portfolio Insights, Analytics and Reporting:

  • A unified tool offering the ability to search, analyze, and present data
  • Customizable report templates catering to diverse needs
  • Automated report generation and distribution for efficiency
  • Advanced data visualization capabilities for better insights

Data-Sharing Capabilities:

  • Seamless data export and import functionalities
  • Secure API-based data exchange with third-party systems
  • Real-time data synchronization across platforms for consistency

In essence, the goal of a real estate data hub is to centralize all data, providing the ability to generate comprehensive investor reports in an intuitive and user-friendly format. By breaking down data silos, such a system empowers Investment Professionals to make quicker, data-driven decisions. Additionally, it ensures real estate data is made accessible to third-party systems via APIs for further processing, thereby enhancing overall data utility.

This transformative approach enables property owners to become truly data-driven organizations, providing them with a distinct competitive edge in the marketplace.

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