Developer Aboitiz Land, Inc. (AboitizLand) said it has embraced digital real estate transactions and contactless home buying even before the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic.
This strategy is here to stay, even accelerate post-COVID-19, according to AboitizLand president and chief executive officer Dave Rafael.
In a statement, AboitizLand said it has managed to retain half of its reservation volume prior to the imposition of community quarantine to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus, or SARS-CoV-2 which causes the COVID-19 respiratory disease.
As opposed to the traditional way of selling properties which entails face-to-face meetings, site trips, open houses, and mini-events, contactless home buying leverages on online platforms such as the company website, social media, and email marketing for lead generation.
“This has been our major strategy since 2019. Fortunately, Aboitiz has a dedicated group [on digital transformation] at the parent level that we were able to tap. Because of our early investments and preparations, we were not caught unprepared,” Rafael said, referring to the limitations caused by the imposition of an enhanced community quarantine (ECQ).
Rafael said the company has been able to train its salesforce, develop proficiency in the systems and tools that make user journey ー from property search to reservation to purchase ー a worthwhile experience.
Interested buyers may use AboitizLand’s 360-degree virtual tours on its website www.aboitizland.com to view amenities, features as well as property locations, or request for an actual video of the unit and book a dedicated property specialist or an agent to assist with all their queries and conduct a comprehensive online presentation.
Reservations may be done online and clients may choose from a range of online modes of payment which include bank transfers, mobile banking apps, or through AboitizLand’s own payment portal.
“The reason why we're at 50% is because the other 50% are traditional buyers who [still] prefer to see the property first before buying,” he said
Metro Manila was placed under a community quarantine on March 15. After two days, or on March 17, the restrictions were tightened into an ECQ and expanded to cover the entire Luzon. Other areas in the country followed.
The ECQ ended, except in Cebu City and Mandaue City, on May 15.
Metro Manila, Bataan, Bulacan, Nueva Ecija, Pampanga, Angeles City and Zambales shifted to modified enhanced community quarantine (MECQ) until May 31 while the rest of the country are under general community quarantine (GCQ).
Under ECQ and MECQ, public transport systems are suspended. In GCQ areas, public transport systems may resume operations at a limited capacity.
Under ECQ, only essential businesses may open. Under MECQ, non-leisure businesses may reopen at a limited capacity. More businesses are allowed to reopen under GCQ provided minimum health standards are complied with. (Ventures Cebu)