Engel & Völkers North America has launched a network-wide initiative to integrate virtual reality technology, capabilities and support into each of its real estate shops. The company will provide each of its brokerages with a virtual reality camera and Google cardboard glasses. It will also provide informational webinars, marketing tools and support.

“We realize that virtual reality is not simply a trend and we are committed to integrating new technologies into our network that help improve the home buying and selling experience,” says Anthony Hitt, CEO, Engel & Völkers North America. “This not only supports our domestic business, but adds great value as a truly global real estate network. International buyers can experience 3D listings on a much broader scale, saving time and targeting their focus as they look to purchase homes in North America.”

The company is partnering with German-based virtual reality company Immoviewer to distribute virtual reality cameras to each office. Immoviewer currently works with more than 2,000 brokerages worldwide to deliver listings in 3D, the company says. Executives from Immoviewer will be working with Engel & Völkers North America to develop educational content that will be available exclusively to members.

Ralf von Grafenstein, CEO of Immoviewer, says, “We have seen incredible results for real estate professionals, including quicker turnaround times during the home buying process, a decrease in the amount of time sellers need to vacate their properties and more flexibility for homebuyers to view multiple homes. Virtual reality is quickly becoming an industry standard in real estate and companies that don’t embrace this technology will quickly fall behind the pack.”