I know the hustle of tryna find a place to rent, let alone to buy, can be terrible. Even worse if you don’t have the time to be moving around and checking all prospective places.
Of course there are ways such as making use of property agents which can help you get around this hassle. Problem with that now is that in Zim, there are a lot of self-proclaimed agents – which usually cannot be trusted; either they con you or they charge you some ridiculous fees. ‘Property agents’ can charge you up to $20 for each house they take you to and if you like it, be prepared to pay an extra ‘moving in fee’ of $10.
The problem with this system of charging is that they might deliberately take you to a house you won’t like simply because $20 is more than $10 (rocket science). And if you’re a particular person, you can imagine how much you’d need to fork out prior to settling for the ‘right one’.
Nonetheless, there are online property platforms in Zimbabwe which can help you find a place for example Propertybook among others. These can help you see and compare places without the need of a physical agent nor the need to be physically present at each location. You can check out the properties, images etcetera. However, sometimes images can only do so much as far as finding a place you can call home is concerned.
In cases where people need to ‘feel’ the place in order to make a decision, images may not do the trick, hence I commend what Pam Golding is doing. Pam Golding advertises some of its property on the Propertybook plartform and they have now enabled virtual touring for some of their property.
Virtual touring allows you to go through a simulated reality, in this case a simulation of the existing property. Using this virtual touring technology means you can basically ‘move’ around the house and choose where to go and when with the aid of a VR (Virtual Reality) headset. This does not only give you a better appreciation of the property remotely but it also saves on time and money.
I know the setback of using Virtual Reality might be on acquiring the headsets. Well, the good thing is there are low end headsets such as the Google cardboard VR headsets which you can get for as little as $10. However, I’d say as VR is being incorporated more and more into our everyday lives, it is better to just buy the quality ones (not too high quality because those are quite pricy, but high enough to last longer). After all, it should be a once-off buy so I’m sure you can make the sacrifice if interested.
By the way, I don’t want to overlook the fact that Virtual Reality might still sound like gibberish to someone. No pressure. Techzim has actually written quite a number of articles on it. I recommend that you start with this one though for a better appreciation of the technology.