Housebuilding is currently pursuing its own digital innovation agenda, through initiatives like Building Information Management (BIM), while the smart home and IoT tech specifications are being created separately by the tech industry.
“We currently have two parallel strands of innovation around housing data and property technology. The two groups aren’t talking and are creating incompatible outcomes.” Says Chimni MD Nigel Walley. “The proptech world is not creating information to help housebuilders include their tech in new home designs and both industries are working on separate formats for data and house performance analysis”
“This hasn’t previously mattered because proptech innovations tended to be a consumer add-on to any home. Now the two worlds are colliding as proptech starts to get built into the fabric of new homes.” There is clearly an onus on the proptech world to understand the needs of housebuilders to help them incorporate new property tech into their designs. “Most proptech manufacturers we speak to are completely unaware of the BIM revolution sweeping construction or what it means for data or analysis”, says Nigel Walley “There is no awareness of BIM Objects or data formats, and no understanding of why or how they would create BIM objects for their devices”. At CES, Chimni released a white paper aimed at the proptech community, explaining the data and analysis implications of the construction industry’s Building Information Management (BIM) revolution to the proptech community. Called ‘BIM for proptech People’ the white paper is intended to lay the groundwork for closer integration between the two industries.
Chimni is calling for co-ordination between the standards bodies in both industries, and joint working to understand how data can be shared, and new forms of home data analysis can be pioneered. In the UK this collaboration could be led by standards bodies such as the RICS.
An easy set of first steps would be for manufacturers of new proptech devices to ensure that there are data sets created for their products in BIM compatible languages so that their systems can be included in new homebuilders specifications from the initial drawing stage.