Single Solution Sought

By Morey, Scott | Journal of Property Management, January/February 2006 | Go to article overview

Single Solution Sought


Morey, Scott, Journal of Property Management


Despite economic globalization, technology lags with single global solution

Lately I have found myself flying all over the world to places like Dubai, Shanghai, Seoul, Frankfurt, Moscow and Florence. I track specific projects that could significantly alter how we operate and manage buildings, ultimately impacting the systems, applications and technology used.

From an operating, platform and financial standpoint, companies originating in the United States seem to be at the forefront of globalization. As such, globalization is creating unique demands and requirements on real estate applications from financial, property management, leasing and building automation perspectives.

From an international financial standpoint, most real-estate specific accounting applications struggle to effectively support other countries' unique requirements-like multi-currency or use of the metric system-and provide means to view information across the enterprise in a meaningful fashion.

From a property management standpoint, information technology departments must have infrastructure, security and applications allowing multiple outside management companies to access and utilize their systems to accommodate a number of interesting trends and requirements-like varying lease terms and the common use of third party property management companies-occurring outside the United States.

Varying lease terms present a host of challenges for real estate technology branching into different markets. Whereas the average office lease in the United States is three to five years long, office leases last from 15 to 30 years in the United Kingdom. In the United States when a lease expires, someone else moves in, and rent is adjusted to current market rates. The United Kingdom relies on a rent review process with checkpoints every five years or so to review rent and compare it to market. …

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