Many countries have set the target to have launched self-driving or autonomous cars by at least 2021. At the same time, Uber claimed to be ready with the technology, as it had tested its self-driving trucks in Arizona last week. However, some questions appear as to how the self-driving car may affect real estate industry in the future. How are both of them related?
While companies, from the big ones like Google and Uber to the traditional automakers like GM, Ford, Audi, Volvo, and many more – are having the driverless car ‘fever’, the above question may provoke us. Not only are the tech companies busy with the technology, many countries are now experimenting with the driverless car technology.
Two Ways on How Self-Driving Cars Can Affect Real Estate Industry
It is for sure that when we see the self-driving cars on the road in the future, many big chances will happen in where we live and work. In the end, it will inevitably affect the real estate industry. How? These are some of the ways:
In the first place, the coming of autonomous cars will affect how the public perceive the need for public transportation. The current trends in many countries include proliferation of real estate around the transit hubs. Any sort of big transportation infrastructure program is always followed by the coming of real estate that surrounds the facilities.
Public transportation facilities like transit hubs always serve as the stimulus for the development of real estate. What will happen when the autonomous cars are on the road? The value of transit facilities may be affected, because of the following reasons:
- People will not ‘hunt’ real estate around the hubs anymore. With autonomous cars, commuting will be much easier. Autonomous cars could potential impair the public transportation systems.
- Residential or commercial buildings around the transit hubs may be less appealing. On one hand, properties that are more distant from transit hubs could be more appealing and more pricey. On the other hand, properties around the transit hubs could find themselves losing the value.
The growth of auto cars is always followed by the growing need for parking. Employees drive in the morning and park their cars near the office during the working hours. Studies show that in the US, average use of private cars is only 5% of the time. The car spends most of its time at the parking area.
However, the coming of autonomous cars will transform how people will use parking area. As Uber said, the self-driving cars will reduce the need for parking. The driverless cars can drop the passengers in the morning. Then, it can find a safe place (like home) to rest and pick up the passengers back after the working hours. As a result, the existing parking lots may be filled with buildings in the future.
However, those two ways on how autonomous cars may affect the real estate industry are still parts of the speculations. We have not been able to predict what may happen in the future yet. We will know it for sure when the driverless cars are around.