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4 Use Cases & 2 Challenges of IoT in Real Estate in 2024

If you have ever dabbled in real state, and chances are that you have, then you might have the same feeling as many others that navigating it is not for the fainthearted.

Whether you are buying, selling, or renting a place, there are many obstacles along the way that would make you want to escape to the metaverse as soon as technologically possible.

In this article; however, we are looking at four use cases of how the infusion of IoT into the real estate sector is making the acquisition and the selling of real estate simpler, as well as making the buildings more environmental-friendly.

How is IoT used in real estate?

IoT could be used in a variety of ways to make buying, selling, renting, and managing properties energy efficient. All tasks from house hunts, to contract signings, to energy management are becoming effortless for all agents (no pun intended) involved.

What are the use cases of IoT in real estate?

There are mainly four main use cases of IoT in real estate that have been observed in real life, including:

House hunting

IoT devices (e.g. cameras, sensors) provide extensive data about the properties and their surroundings, including neighborhood view, safety measures, nearby facilities, and more.

This data can be aggregated by real estate agents to allow for the listing, and browsing, of properties in a user-friendly manner. Whereas in the olden days you needed to look in the papers or speak with an agent to learn more about listed property, today you can scroll down a web page to get all the information you might need.

Advice for home buyers: Use digital real-estate platforms like Zillow,, or Trulia to see if you would enjoy the different experiences they offer.

Virtual open houses

The legend has it that people used to physically attend open houses before.

The IoT; however, is slowly changing the landscape of putting on shoe covers and carefully tip-toeing around the place like you are in a museum.

For example, StreetEasy is a real estate agency in New York, that since the start of the pandemic, introduced 3D housing tours that leverage dome cameras (360°) and IoT sensors to pick up images and relay them onto the web (Figure 1).

Granted, during the pandemic, and especially in New York, the only viewing option that people had were virtual, as opposed to physical ones. But regardless, StreetEasy claims that in the second and third quarter of 2020, their sales listing had increased by a whopping %110.

Advice for buyers: If you cannot physically take a tour of the house, explore to see if there are any agencies in your vicinity that offer virtual tours. With the prevalence of this technology, it shouldn’t be too difficult to find an agency providing this feature.

image of 3d home tour step by step guide
Figure 1: A virtual tour of a house, Source: StreetEasy

HVAC efficiency

HVAC stands for heating, ventilation, and air conditioning. As the devices are getting smarter, they will start learning about decentralizing the management of the environment.

For example, no longer would I need to turn the heater off when I crack open a window. Devices integrated with IoT temperature sensors would “sense” that the breeze might be a sign of someone voluntarily letting cold air in, and they would turn themselves off until the situation changes.

This feature has economic ramifications as it would decrease our energy bills by operating with optimum efficiency.

Advice for house sellers: Invest in smart meters to save money by efficiently managing your energy consumption, as well as making your houses a more alluring option for the buyer for the same reason.

Lighting efficiency

Related to HVAC is lighting. Smart lighting solutions are growing in popularity (Figure 2) because they allow for remotely controlling the lighting system, as well as the awareness of the IoT sensors to automatically turn on or off when the situation dictates so. Moreover, who doesn’t like programming their lights to turn on at specific intervals? Or to change their hues to match the mood?

A time-series graph of rising interest in smart lights.
Figure 2: Google Showing a Rise of Interest in Smart Lights

What are the challenges in implementing IoT in the real estate market?

With any IoT solutions in any other sector, there are challenges that need addressing and mitigating, including:


Real estate brokers and buyers alike could be anxious about data security. The cameras, monitors, or sensors inside the houses or on the premises could be infiltrated by hackers. This provides them with street images, data on the movement of people, and more.

In addition, the home buyers’ data on mobile applications and on websites are also prone to be exploited.

Advice for real estate agencies: Adopt cybersecurity measures that could protect your and your customer’s data from cyber attacks.


This challenge, which is perhaps more encountered by property managers and/or developers than agents and buyers, is getting the right tools for monitoring IoT devices, as well as collecting, analyzing, and processing the extracted data. The success of an IoT ecosystem lies within accurate data collection, accumulating them onto the cloud, and then acting upon them.

For instance, smart home devices should be linked to thermometers to allow for a more streamlined and truly intelligent network. The developers should use compatibility tools in order to connect different devices running different software applications and be able to handle both structured and unstructured data.

Advice for home developers: Hire IT professionals and invest in IoT solutions and tools for getting the optimum performance out of your network.

For more on IoT

If you are interested in learning more about the applications of IoT across different sectors, explore:

Check our data-driven hub of IoT solutions and tools.

And we can guide you through the process:

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Access Cem's 2 decades of B2B tech experience as a tech consultant, enterprise leader, startup entrepreneur & industry analyst. Leverage insights informing top Fortune 500 every month.
Cem Dilmegani
Principal Analyst
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Cem Dilmegani
Principal Analyst

Cem has been the principal analyst at AIMultiple since 2017. AIMultiple informs hundreds of thousands of businesses (as per similarWeb) including 60% of Fortune 500 every month.

Cem's work has been cited by leading global publications including Business Insider, Forbes, Washington Post, global firms like Deloitte, HPE, NGOs like World Economic Forum and supranational organizations like European Commission. You can see more reputable companies and media that referenced AIMultiple.

Throughout his career, Cem served as a tech consultant, tech buyer and tech entrepreneur. He advised businesses on their enterprise software, automation, cloud, AI / ML and other technology related decisions at McKinsey & Company and Altman Solon for more than a decade. He also published a McKinsey report on digitalization.

He led technology strategy and procurement of a telco while reporting to the CEO. He has also led commercial growth of deep tech company Hypatos that reached a 7 digit annual recurring revenue and a 9 digit valuation from 0 within 2 years. Cem's work in Hypatos was covered by leading technology publications like TechCrunch and Business Insider.

Cem regularly speaks at international technology conferences. He graduated from Bogazici University as a computer engineer and holds an MBA from Columbia Business School.

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