Outside of the soaring trend of property prices in Hong Kong, finding a property continues to present multiple road blocks to prospective buyers. The city has currently over 38,000 licensed property agents willing and ready to sell you new or used flats. But prospective home buyers need to understand that the process of acquiring a home can easily become a daunting task.
Home buyers typically have to gather property-related information through multiple channels and evaluate suitable options, while obtaining a preliminary sense of the affordability of a property.
To ease prospective buyers into the process, DBS Bank (Hong Kong) launched its DBS Home360, a mobile phone app designed to let home buyers find a property that is tailored to their preference. In partnership with realtor Century 21, the app lets prospective buyers find properties available for sale anywhere in Hong Kong.
In addition to on demand listing of available properties for sale, filtered by price, location and number of rooms, users can view the selected property from the convenience of their mobile device via virtual tour. It also provides instant valuation with data culled from valuation firm Cushman & Wakefield. As expected, it includes a built-in budget calculator that also provides estimates on how much users can expect to pay, including stamp duty, commissions and related fees.
It also comes with an Instant Mortgage Assessment feature to let users find out if they qualify for a mortgage based on their finances, and have a bank representative follow up and assist with the formal application, the app also calculates agent commission, applicable stamp duties and solicitor fees so that prospective buyers have a ballpark figure of how much they really need for down payment to the property of their choice.
The app is designed to avoid surprises, particularly for first time home buyers who may not know all the unannounced fees that come with buying a property in Hong Kong.
Royce Teo, managing director and head of Consumer Banking Group and Wealth Management, Hong Kong, of DBS Bank (Hong Kong) said “we developed DBS Home360 as an innovative, interactive and intuitive way to put the power of realtors and banks at your fingertips. More importantly, prospective homebuyers can gain a clear understanding of the home-buying process, from searching for properties to sending in the mortgage application.”
First published in Fintech Innovation