Where bionic brokers are making progress in real estate, bots are also quickly moving in. Luke, an AI-assisted chatbot from start-up RealFriend, searches dozens of real estate databases for personalized recommendations. The bot provides detailed recommendations with targeted amenities like sunlight, safety ratings, and nearby subways, and can also answer specific questions such as: B. "Which directions are the windows facing?" or "Is this apartment a better deal than where I currently live?"
RealFriend was founded in 2018 by Hadar Landau and Omri Klinger, two entrepreneurs who worked in the same elite intelligence unit of the Israel Defense Forces. They first introduced Dooron, Luke's older Hebrew-speaking cousin, to the Tel Aviv rental market. Luke started out in New York in July. The service is free for users. Realtors who sell a property and typically earn a three percent commission on sales in New York City pay Luke 25 percent of their commission when the bot calls in a buyer.
The developers consulted with a behavioral economist when building the Luke and Dooron, using strategies of letting the customer make the decision, as always. Make sure the bot's responses are more of a discussion than just facts. and show vulnerability by admitting when the bot doesn't understand something or does something wrong.
Users say the result is similar to texting a person – if that person had access to all of the property listings in the city.
“Luke is very empathetic. He apologizes if his answers take too long. It really feels like you are talking to a person, ”said Dr. Ruben Pagan, who has been looking for a new one bedroom apartment with a traditional realtor for four months. A month ago he decided to expand his search reach and started using Luke to search records while also keeping his human agent.
Thanks to Luke's direction, he's now focused on New York's seaport district and exploring real estate at all times – and asks Luke for a recommended starting offer. "I can text him at 11:00 p.m. or even 1:00 p.m. and I don't worry about bothering him," said Dr. Pagan. He began using Luke by asking which neighborhoods in the city were considered "emerging", with prices around $ 700 per square foot.
According to RealFriend, 45,000 users have chatted with Luke since his New York debut, resulting in more than 1,000 rental contracts signed and a handful of home purchases. RealFriend co-founder and chief technology officer, Mr. Klinger, believes the number of buyers using Luke will increase.