Edinburgh headquartered housebuilder CALA Homes (East) has invested in an interactive home viewing experience that lets prospective buyers attend guided tours around showhomes via video chat.
The technology allows customers to virtually view a home, alongside a company sales consultant via an inbuilt video conference function. The tech has proven successful enough to be offered to CALA customers across Scotland.
CALA Homes (East) has worked with North Lanarkshire-based View360 Scotland on the project through its Matterport virtual platform, which fully models a house using high-definition 360-degree cameras.
The company halted activity on its sites at the beginning of the Covid-19 lockdown measures, launching a Remote Reservations service to run alongside the selection of virtual tours already available on their website instead.
Philip Hogg, Sales and Marketing Director with CALA Homes (East), said: “Since 2008 we’ve worked with View360 on different ways to showcase all of our homes online so that interested buyers can take a tour at any time on our website.
“Given the current situation, we feel it’s even more necessary to engage with our potential buyers personally, and as such, over the past few weeks, we’ve been working with View360 to create the best remote user experience for our customers whereby they can now take a tour of more than 30 of our homes, virtually accompanied by our Sales Consultants.
“The end product is quite astonishing – the Virtual Guided Tours look really clear and are very high quality. They allow customers a chance to ask their questions to our team real-time regarding room layouts, sizes and specification. What View360 have produced is a really valuable tool for us and to potential buyers.
“Our Virtual Guided Tours will have lasting benefits outside the pandemic, including enabling customers who live a distance away from our developments, such as in England or abroad, to remotely take a tour of one of our showhomes, or allow people to do a lot more of the leg work involved in house hunting remotely from home before visiting the site.”
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John Robinson, Managing Director of View360, said: “CALA Homes (East) is the first of our clients to go live with the service – we’ve refined the platform over the past couple of weeks with the team at CALA to make sure it looks and works exactly how they want it to.
“The real beauty of this is that the host, in this case, the Sales Consultant, is navigating and guiding buyers through the home in real-time – it gives you that face to face dynamic you can’t get under the current circumstances otherwise.”
Hogg added: “It will have far-reaching benefits even when we return to a new normality.
“For instance, should a buyer be interested in a style of home that is not available to view as a showhome at their preferred development, they’ll be able to visit the home through a Virtual Guided Tour. This really is a brilliant step forward for buyer experience.”