American Homebuyers are Ready to Embrace Virtual Reality, According to Coldwell Banker Real Estate Survey

Smart home technology continues to grow in popularity and could change the way consumers buy and sell homes

Madison, NJ – Jan. 8, 2018 (PRNewswire) Technology has made the process of home buying and selling simpler, smarter and faster. As smart home and virtual reality (VR) technology continues to become more mainstream and sought after, consumers are now expecting high-tech experiences before even stepping foot in a prospective listing.

Coldwell Banker Logo

A new survey from Coldwell Banker Real Estate LLC, conducted online by Harris Poll among over 3,000 U.S. adults, suggests VR is poised to become the next big thing in real estate. Americans appear to be ready to embrace VR as a resource to visualize what is normally left to the home buyer’s imagination. In fact, the desire for VR house tours is almost on par with traditional video tours. For those considering a home purchase in the future, 84 percent of respondents would like to see video footage, while 77 percent would like the ability to be able to take VR house tours before actually visiting prospective homes.

Furthermore, the survey found that if they were considering purchasing a new home in the future:

  • Americans also see additional applications of VR, with over two-thirds (68 percent) saying that they would love the ability to utilize VR to see how their current furniture would fit in a prospective home.
  • 62 percent of Americans would be more likely to choose a real estate sales associate who offered VR house tour capabilities as a service for their clients that prospective buyers could view on their computer or smartphone over one that did not.

Smart Home Preferences:

VR is just the beginning when it comes to being smart about technology and real estate. If there’s anything the past few years have proven, it’s that smart home technology is here to stay. The Coldwell Banker survey also asked consumers about their smart home preferences, with the following key takeaways:

  • This year, 32 percent of Americans report having smart home products in their homes, up from 24 percent in 2016, revealing a 33 percent year-over-year increase
  • If selling a home this year, nearly half (42 percent) of Americans agreed that they would look to their sales agent to provide suggestions about how staging their home with smart home products/technology could impact the sale of their home

It’s up to real estate professionals to counsel sellers on how to make their listings stand out by having pre-installed smart home technology in their home and provide insight on smart home technology’s value to prospective buyers.

So what smart products would potential homebuyers most prefer to have already installed?

  • Smart thermostat (77 percent)
  • Smart fire detector (75 percent)
  • Smart carbon monoxide detector (70 percent)
  • Smart camera (66 percent)
  • Smart lock (63 percent)
  • Smart lighting system (63 percent)


“Our consumer findings underscore the need for industry-wide smart home education for real estate sales agents. As the smart home leader in real estate, Coldwell Banker is at the forefront of this trend. We were the first to offer a smart home certification and definition of a smart home which positions our network of brokers and agents to deliver a competitive advantage for their customers in an ever-changing market.”

– Charlie Young, president and CEO of Coldwell Banker Real Estate LLC

“It’s crucial that the real estate industry stays on the cutting edge of technology. From virtual reality to smart home tech, consumers are now interacting with these technologies in different capacities and expect the same when working with a real estate professional. Coldwell Banker Real Estate is committed to connecting our independent affiliated agents with the best technology to better serve and counsel home buyers and sellers.”

– David Marine, senior vice president of marketing of Coldwell Banker Real Estate LLC

Coldwell Banker at CES 2018
Coldwell Banker Real Estate is returning to CES for the third consecutive year as the exclusive sponsor of the Smart Home Marketplace. David Marine, senior vice president of marketing of Coldwell Banker Real Estate, will be a featured panelist at CES in the Trending Tech session, “Every Company is a Tech Company,” led by Brian Kelly of U.S. News & World Report. To advance its agent education platform and materials, Coldwell Banker Real Estate is bringing an inaugural group of smart home savvy agents, dubbed the Blue Crew, to attend CES and broadcast content live from the show floor via Coldwell Banker’s social media channels.

For the full results of the Coldwell Banker Real Estate Smart Home Marketplace consumer survey, including detailed breakdowns by smart home products, please visit this link.

The 2017 survey was conducted online within the United States by Harris Poll on behalf of Coldwell Banker Real Estate from December 5-7, 2017 among 3,129 U.S. adults ages 18 and older, and the 2016 survey was conducted online within the United States by Harris Poll on behalf of Coldwell Banker Real Estate from November 14-16 and November 18-22, 2016 among 4,108 U.S. adults ages 18 and older. This online survey is not based on a probability sample and therefore no estimate of theoretical sampling error can be calculated. For ease of respondents’ understanding, in the survey, the term ‘realtor’ was used when defining ‘real estate sales associates’. For complete survey methodology, including weighting variables and sample sizes, please contact Athena Snow ( or Rachel Braude (

About Coldwell Banker Real Estate LLC
Since 1906, the Coldwell Banker® organization has been a premier provider of full-service residential and commercial real estate brokerage services. Coldwell Banker Real Estate is the oldest national real estate brand and franchisor in the United States, and today has a global network of 3,000 independently owned and operated franchised broker offices in 47 countries and territories with more than 91,000 affiliated sales professionals. The Coldwell Banker brand is known for creating innovative consumer services as recently seen by taking a leadership role in the smart home space, being the first national real estate brand with an iPad app, the first to augment its website for smart phones, the first to create an iPhone application with international listings, the first to develop an iPad application (CBx) to easily bring big data into home listing presentations, and the first to fully harness the power of video in real estate listings, news and information through its Coldwell Banker On LocationSM YouTube channel.

Media Inquiries:

Athena Snow
Coldwell Banker Real Estate LLC
(973) 407-5590

Rachel Braude
CooperKatz for Coldwell Banker Real Estate LLC
(917) 595-3061

Virtual Reality Has Yet to Make a Big Impression

As Google’s developer conference I/O 2017 is about to kick off, rumor has it that the company might show off a new virtual reality headset at the event. The rumored headset reportedly won’t require a PC or a smartphone and is described as featuring “cutting-edge” technology.

So far, virtual reality has not lived up to the hype that surrounded the technology in recent years. Despite several headsets finally hitting the market in 2016, the consumer response to VR devices has been tepid at best.

According to Nielsen’s latest Games 360 report, very few Americans are seriously considering buying a VR headset. The reasons for the lack of interest are summed up by a separate study by Thrive Analytics, which finds that many consumers simply aren’t interested in virtual reality.

This chart illustrates the limited interest in virtual reality in the United States.

Infographic: Virtual Reality Has Yet to Make a Big Impression | Statista You will find more statistics at Statista

Matterport Support for WebVR Helps Bring Virtual Reality to the Browser

[Editors Note: We recently blogged about a single property Website that integrates Matterports technology – see ‘PowerSite Profile – An Excellent Example of a Single Property Website to Market this Newport Beach Home‘]

Immersive Media Leader Teams with Google to Demonstrate Matterport’s 300,000 Real-World Spaces in VR via Chrome

Sunnyvale, CA – February 09, 2017 (BUSINESS WIRE)Immersive media platform company Matterport today announced support for WebVR on Daydream-ready phones. With Google’s rollout of a browser with native WebVR support, VR users will now be able to load VR experiences directly in their Chrome browser on their Daydream-ready phones without having to first download a VR app.

MatterPort Logo

Over time WebVR is expected to take hold and proliferate across devices and platforms. Given the maturity and ubiquity of web technology, the expansion of WebVR should also mean accelerated adoption of VR technology.

Matterport is one of the launch partners to work with Google in rolling out a WebVR experience which has been released with Chrome 56 as an origin trial. “At Matterport, we want to make it very easy for our customers to create VR content, for our partners to distribute this VR content and for users to consume VR content,” said Bill Brown, CEO of Matterport. “WebVR support helps to make VR simple, immediate and accessible.”

With WebVR, users no longer need to download any apps to move from a web experience to a VR experience. For those with a Daydream-ready phone, experiencing VR means they simply tap the VR icon in a Matterport 3D Showcase in their Chrome browser, slip their phone into a Daydream View, and start exploring.

“WebVR makes discovering virtual reality experiences as easy as clicking a link,” said Megan Lindsay, Google Product Manager for WebVR. “Matterport’s WebVR integration lets Daydream users with Chrome explore places all over the world from anywhere.”

Matterport made waves last year when it announced CoreVR, allowing customers to automatically enable any of its 3D tours to be experienced in VR. This move gave Matterport the distinction of having by far the largest VR library of real-world spaces. Customers such as Sotheby’s International Realty, who have been using Matterport, are seeing the benefits of WebVR. “WebVR will become a catalyst for VR content, and Google’s Chrome is the first to support WebVR natively in a production version,” said John Passerini, Global VP Interactive Marketing at Sotheby’s International Realty. “By enabling Sotheby’s International Realty listings in WebVR using Matterport’s technology, we will continue to stay at the forefront of cutting edge technology.”

Customers like Mansion Global, a luxury real estate portal and publisher, see the benefits of this roll out. “WebVR will bring the power of the linked web to VR content,” said Mae Cheng, Publisher and Editor-in-Chief at Mansion Global. “Mansion Global wants to make it easy for readers to experience listings first-hand, and the combination of WebVR and Matterport goes a long way to doing that. We are excited to offer Matterport WebVR on our site to prospective property buyers and readers.”

To view Matterport VR Spaces with WebVR, you need:

A Daydream-ready phone with the latest version of Chrome. See compatible phones on Google’s Daydream website.
A Daydream View VR headset by Google. Learn more and purchase on Google’s Daydream website.
Support for additional browsers and platforms will be added soon.

Further details on Google’s announcement are available here.

Further details on experiencing Matterport VR are available here.

About Matterport:

Headquartered in Sunnyvale, CA, Matterport is an immersive media technology company that delivers an end-to-end system for creating, modifying, distributing, and navigating immersive 3D and virtual reality (VR) versions of real-world spaces on Web, mobile devices, and VR headsets. The Matterport Pro Camera and Cloud Services make it quick and easy to turn real-world places into immersive virtual experiences. To learn more, visit, the Matterport Community or visit us on social media.


Tim Smith
(415) 350-3019