During the Kyiv Smart City Forum 2019 held in Kyiv on October 1, the SAGA Development SEO Andriy Vavrysh named the main factors influencing the development of cities and real estate markets, and also told how developers can remain competitive under these conditions.
The real estate market is under increasing pressure due to the increasing urbanization. Cities gain more power and influence. The role of states, however, is gradually diminishing. In the next 40 years, the urban population will double: by 2050 metropolitan cities will accommodate about 3 billion residents. Building new territories will gain momentum, increasing pressure on the real estate market. To help metropolitan cities deal with the influx of locals, in October 2016, the UN approved Habitat III, a sustainable urban development program. The 17 goals of this program are aimed at improving land management models, resource management and urban development. According to experts, the application of this practice will help cities to strengthen the link between urbanization and sustainable development.
According to Andriy Vavrysh, Ukraine is also seeing an increase in urban areas. But at the same time, existing urban resources are often misused.
"According to the government program, it is planned to raise about $ 50 billion of investments in the next 5 years. This is a huge amount, some of which will be allocated for urban development and infrastructure construction. Of course, such action plan will have a positive impact on the real estate market, but at the same time it makes us wonder whether we are ready for such progressive changes," said the company's SEO.
Despite the favourable government forecasts, today Ukraine has rather disappointing economic indicators. For example, Germany needs 53 hours to produce products that are equal in volume to Ukraine's annual GDP
According to Andriy Vavrysh, a weak economy and attracting investment are two opposing factors that today shape the internal market trends and affect the real estate sector. To remain competitive in such conditions, developers need to focus on global urban development trends: human-cantered, open-minded and sustainable development. The SAGA Development team is guided by these principles
The development can no longer "preserve" the Soviet practice of urban planning. It should be an open ecosystem to which all users of the facility are involved: contractors, partners, locals, etc.
"The area development cannot be seen as personal and closed. The project development process should involve those who will then use its results. But we understand that to collaborate with locals and find common ground, we must create a quality product and constantly work to improve it."
Another important factor that allows a developer to be competitive is digitization: both business processes within the company and processes of construction, sale and service.
Currently, the company is introducing BIM technologies for the construction of facilities. It uses a CRM system to automate customer service. Two years ago, to improve life in its buildings, the SAGA Development has developed Sfera, a mobile application that helps its residents to interact with a management company and with each other.
Today, Sfera has integrated utility bills that allow the residents to track real-time costs and trust invoices issued by the management company. In the "Democracy" section, apartment owners can vote for certain initiatives and thus arrange the home life. It is convenient to order delivery of tickets, food and more. The nearest plans are to launch the first crowdfunding of building projects in Ukraine.
To optimize and control the management company operation, a special ticketing system was introduced. It gives an opportunity to evaluate the quality of tasks, the competence of employees and the level of residents' satisfaction.
The main feature of Sfera is the flexibility of its functions. They can be scaled based on user requests. Andriy Vavrysh is convinced that the introduction of such technologies into the life of residents will become a trigger for the transformation of Kyiv into a Smart City.
"The foundation of all SAGA Development projects is human happiness in the urban environment. Therefore, one of the company's strategies is to constantly improve our facilities, services and algorithm for interaction between project participants. And we are grateful to such a factor as competition. It is constantly growing, giving us the opportunity to focus on the best world experience, to develop and change traditions in the real estate market. We are glad that the only one who wins in this process is the city and its residents," summed up Andriy Vavrysh