Real Estate Business
Disrupting the Real Estate Industry: Kenyan Founder Owen Sakawa’s Elloe AI Takes the US by Storm
Who remembers watching Minority Report back in 2002 and thinking ‘those big 3-D touch screens will never happen’? And while Back to the Future II might not have been on the money when it comes to hoverboards and self-tying shoes, the prediction of video calls (hello, Facetime) is something we take for granted every day now.
Bladerunners predictions of biometric recognition and smart homes are yet another example. Ideas that were once viewed as outlandish are increasingly a normal part of daily life.
Well, it’s the same in real estate. Concepts that seemed completely out there even just a few years ago are happening right now. Game changing, intelligent technology tools connecting people, properties and services are not ‘in the future’ anymore.
Elloe is revolutionizing the way real estate transactions are conducted. Founded by Kenyan entrepreneur Owen Sakawa, the company is making waves in the US Real estate market, with industry heavyweights like Zillow praising its ability to streamline communication and improve efficiency in the buying and selling process. Whether you’re a buyer looking for your dream home or a seller looking to maximize your property’s value, Elloe’s AI-powered platform is changing the game and disrupting the traditional real estate industry.
According to Sakawa, the goal of Elloe AI is to empower real estate agents to focus on what they do best: selling properties. “Our technology takes care of the boring tasks, so agents can spend more time building relationships with clients, closing deals and making money,” he said.
The technology has already caught the attention of some of the biggest names in the real estate industry, who are now adopting it to improve their operations. “Elloe Conversational AI has been a game changer for our business,” said Rich Barton, CEO of Zillow. “It has allowed us to save time and money, while also improving the customer experience. We’ve seen a significant increase in our conversion rates since implementing the technology.”
Real estate expert Leah Jay also praised the tech, saying “Elloe Conversational AI is a perfect example of how technology can be used to make the real estate process more efficient and convenient for both agents and clients. It’s no wonder that so many top real estate companies are now using it.”
AI in Sales
Using big data analysis, AI is able to use propensity markers to identify which property owners are most likely to transact in the future, whether that’s a likelihood of selling or renting their property. The system can then automate the initial contact and indicate to the agent who to call and when to call them. Think of it as a prospector that never sleeps.
Elloe has created AI that acts as a virtual sales assistant that works 24/7 and does not ask for overtime pay.
Rich Barton, CEO of Zillow explains, “The immediacy of response is driven by other industries, particularly things like ride sharing and ordering things online. People want someone to come back quickly. “Traditionally, our industry has lagged a bit in that area, but through the use of technology, particularly with Elloe now, we can actually meet that demand without the agent having to be awake to respond,” he says.
AI allows your business to operate 24/7 to triage, respond and prioritize potential buyers. It’s also trained to look for potential vendors, scouring the Internet and joining digital dots to inform agents when, why and who to call.
AI in Property Management
One of the areas of real estate with the most immediate application right now, today, is automating property management.
Property managers are some of the most stressed professionals around, with studies showing that one in four property managers are considering leaving the industry (source: MRI Software, Voice of the Property Manager, 2022). The burnout is real and as an industry, we must do something.
Automating some of the mundane tasks in property management is one way we can make people’s lives easier, and raise the bar for a positive professional experience for the next generation of property managers, as well as landlords and for tenants.
Leah Jay has specialized in property management for 28 years in the Newcastle and Hunter regions. As an early AI pioneer, Leah Jay is fielding 1500 online inquiries a month through Elloe AI platform, with almost 100% accuracy.
“One of the great things about Elloe, or having AI in our business, is it really operates like a silent employee. We are really, totally 100% hands off. It just operates in the background, providing that consistent service to our clients 24/7,” says Cassandra Lantry, General Manager Leah Jay Real Estate.
Elloe AI virtual sales agent intelligently answers questions and delivers a rich AI-powered customer experience, leaving Leah Jay’s professional leasing staff with more time during business hours to focus on tasks that matter. Leah Jay agents have affectionately named this technology, ‘Andi’ – often referring to it as the “overachiever of the team”. When a prospective client called and asked to speak to Andi having had multiple online conversations already, they knew they were onto something big.
Advantages of Implementing Elloe AI in your Real Estate business:
“Businesses that had already embraced technology prior to the COVID-19 pandemic are now reaping the benefits by capturing a significant portion of the market from traditional agency companies,” said Owen Sakawa, Founder & CEO of Elloe AI. He went on to explain the advantages of incorporating Elloe AI into a real estate business, saying, “By implementing Elloe, your business can gain a competitive advantage and enhance its overall performance.”
- Conversational AI across any channel
Conversational AI is already a reality, with Elloe AI enabling real estate agents to connect and converse with customers 24/7 via platforms like websites. The technology is now available on any channel a customer desires, whether that be a real estate portal like REA or Domain, or a social media platform like Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp.
Elloe conversational AI can discuss any property on any channel with any consumer at any time, regardless of their location or the platform they choose to use. It has become a highly customer-centric model that allows people to communicate in the way that suits them best, rather than adapting to the preferred channels of real estate agents.
- Digital twins
Looking at the commercial property sector also gives insight into the technology changes that are likely to occur. For example, in commercial property, it is common to have a digital twin – a virtual representation of an object that spans its lifecycle, updated using real-time data, using simulation, machine learning and reasoning to help decision making. In other words, an online presence with up-to-date information about a property.
However, in residential property, the digital presence for a home tends to only remain active when the property is listed for sale or lease. With the use of digital twin technology, Elloe Virtual Assistant can offer property owners the ability to maintain an online presence of the property that remains available and if the homeowner wants to sell, they can enable a vendor view of the property or set up a buyer view, a landlord view, or a tenant view. This allows for easy and quick access to relevant information about the property at any point in time.
- Automated property management maintenance requests
Elloe AI’s technology allows for the automation of maintenance requests from tenants and landlords 365 days a year through its intelligently trained concierge AI technology. With this capability, tenants can easily send requests through various channels such as Facebook or Instagram in case of emergency at any time, and the Concierge AI will quickly find a plumber who works out-of-hours in the area, check it against the predefined lease budget and dispatch it to the address. Additionally, the Intelligent AI can efficiently handle chasing arrears and complaint management.
- Autonomous Intelligent Prospecting Platform
Elloe’s technology allows for prospecting for new businesses to be taken to another level in the present, leveraging AI capabilities. Not only does the Elloe platform mine and predict properties and people with a propensity to list, but it also contacts them on your behalf in context, instantly creating a website about their home, leveraging market data, and enabling engagement in conversation to ultimately book the appraisal for you.
- Open for inspections (OFIs)
Let’s face it, a lot of people attending open houses aren’t serious buyers. Elloe’s AI technology allows for an enhanced open house experience, as it enables people to talk to the Concierge AI as they inspect properties online with full 360-degree tours of the property. From the comfort of their own home, they can obtain price opinions and feedback, ask detailed questions about lease terms and rent, and even apply for a property. Importantly, the AI is trained to help identify potential vendors and serve the opportunity for real estate agents to forge a human connection. This allows for a more efficient and effective open house experience for both the agents and potential buyers.
We’re only just getting started, don’t be left behind
The reality is changing can be scary, but what’s even scarier is finding yourself looking at your competitors racing ahead and wishing you’d leaped to try something new back when they did. Elloe AI is passionate about the real estate industry and knows that for it to thrive, intelligent use of technology that keeps people and their needs front and center is essential.
The bottom line is when we talk about Artificial Intelligence in real estate, it’s not about the future. It is already happening. Think about the bell curve of adoption which tells us laggards get no competitive advantage. The innovators, early adopters, and pioneers are already using Elloe AI in their businesses today. It’s here. But the vision of Elloe AI is to be part of raising the next generation of modern real estate agencies to use AI to connect people, properties, and real estate services. It’s a collective vision, think of it as “the rising tide lifts all boats” where everyone benefits from mainstream adoption. The time for AI is now.