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For a long time, Robert Hoban was scratching his head over why the wider property sector hadn’t adopted new technologies to make the buying and selling of property easier.
With a career that spans years at real estate group Savills and UK property consultancy Allsop, Hoban has seen his fair share of ups and down in the property space but also the emergence of new technologies.
He headed up Allsop’s online auction service, Bid X1, which allows buyers to bid online on property auctions.
For Hoban, this was proof that online buying and selling had much more potential, beyond auctions, which only accounts for a small sliver of sales.
“I wanted to bring some of this (tech) to the mainstream market, the 95%, which is being managed by estate agents,” he said.
“Having consulted with a lot of estate agents and law firms, it became very clear that there was a huge appetite for something like this. Everybody is browned off with the process at the moment, nobody will praise the property sales process.”
Hoban made the decision to strike out on his own and the result is Offr, a software solution that bridges the gap between agents and buyers online.
It sits on the real estate agents’ websites and on first glance looks a lot like the customer service chatbots that many sites employ.
“It allows you access to all the services that you wanted to do with that property on your phone or desktop,” he said.
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