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PRISM 2024 Attendees Hopeful for NextGen CRE Technologies and Market Outlook

May 20, 2024 3 mins

Against the current market backdrop, where the CRE industry is in a wait-and-see mode, lenders, appraisers, and environmental professionals were surprisingly upbeat as they discussed the impact of AI and the potential of unlocking data from appraisals and property due diligence technology. PRISM 2024—the annual commercial real estate technology conference hosted by LightBox, now in its 8th year, was held in Dallas from May 13-15th.

Even though commercial real estate (CRE) sales and lending activity has been muted since the summer of 2022 (due to higher interest rates), the crowd was upbeat.

Most have already noticed an uptick in activity over the last 60 days—echoing the findings of the Lightbox Q1 CRE Activity Index. The recent bump in activity since early 2024 gave hope to most attendees that H2 2024 would bring a much-needed uptick in CRE activity.

Notably, just as much energy came from the various firms and speakers that touted new innovations poised to help CRE professionals mitigate risk and increase productivity.

Among the speakers was Daniel Fenton, Head of Product, AI Platform at JLL. Fenton discussed new AI-driven features already in use at the brokerage firm, which connect data to enable brokers and researchers to spend more time serving their clients and less time gathering information.

Similarly, Patrick Jacolenne of DataLogIQ 360 and Gabrial Byberg of JLL pointed out that the time has never been better for firms to pull together disparate data sets and sources to create more holistic views of the CRE markets.

AI, ChatGPT, and the use of large language models (LLM) to create more deployable data was a consistent theme throughout the event— but most were firm in their belief that the new AI tools will make CRE professionals more efficient and accurate in their work while creating more CRE jobs, not fewer.

Nathan Dever and Candi Coleman hosted an interactive session on data extraction before a roomful of bankers and lenders. During a spirited session, the duo discussed how to structure data from multiple inputs for risk rating, stress testing, covenants, and credit analysis to enable appraisers to better describe a property and deliver a holistic and consistent view of property characteristics. Bankers were consistent in their comments that better data storage techniques would lead to better underwriting, more complete market assessments, and greater productivity.

There was plenty for environmental due diligence professionals to be excited about. Kathleen Lavallee and Paul Schiffer, both in Product Management at LightBox, unveiled the future of Lightbox property due diligence technology. The team previewed upcoming groundbreaking advancements for property due diligence that capitalizes on digitization of data, machine learning, and workplace customization.

Stay tuned for upcoming blogs on the implications and opportunity of AI in the workplace; an in-depth look at the latest cyclical and structural trends impacting the CRE market; and highlights from the panel of experts in legal, lending and engineering who provided timely updates on the status of the U.S. EPA’s designation of PFAS as a hazardous substance.

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