Creating the Future of Real Estate: Trends for 2019

With over 30 years of experience, George Carras, Founder and CEO of R-LABS Canada, has firsthand experience navigating the peaks and valleys of innovation in the real estate sector. This week, we’ve asked him to share his insights on emerging industry trends and key areas to watch in 2019.


The industry has had mixed responses to the buzz of PropTech – and that’s healthy. While the skeptics are alive and well, the true innovators from both large institutional organizations and smaller private organizations are not only using the offerings of PropTech companies, they’re also choosing to invest in them. But as real estate organizations embrace technologies, we must be aware that failure can be a regular dance partner.


On the wall at R-LABS, there is a quote and a formula that are key to the innovation culture of R-LABS and our ventures:

It’s not about focusing on the events we face – we have no control over those. Our outcomes will be defined by our response to those events. As we move into 2019, I see the formation of three tribes with distinct mindsets and approaches to innovation:


  • The Wait-and-See Tribe: Here, we will find people whose response is either denial (on the impact of technology) or delay. They will choose not to take action now but may become part of the late majority later. Most real estate organizations tend to migrate to this tribe.

  • The Real Innovators Tribe: These are the people who take innovation seriously and make major changes to the status quo in people, skills and investments. Passionate and driven, they risk time, money and reputation to move forward.

  • The Innovation Theatre Tribe: From the outside, this tribe will be hard to distinguish from true innovators but people inside will know and quickly recognize them. They will make visible announcements and may make small investments, but their “innovation” will be only for show, not go.

The tribe we join and how we handle innovation will predict our outcomes. Darwin is alive and well in real estate and the future will likely belong to those who can best adapt to change. R-LABS has a key role to play in helping, people, companies and our industry evolve and succeed. As we get ready to launch our community portal, we’re excited to create a space where the Real Innovator Tribe and the Wait-and-See Tribe can thrive together. We hope you will continue to help us grow our community and we look forward to sharing our launch announcement in the coming weeks!

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