858.519.3240

All in Favor of Electronic Lease Abstracting, Say AI!

Be ready, they said. It’s coming, they said. Robots are going to take over the world!
While we aren’t there just yet, there is a growing trend towards using artificial intelligence in the commercial real estate industry.

Artificial intelligence is one of those things we’ve all been hearing about for, well, decades now. Be ready, they said. It’s coming, they said. Robots are going to take over the world!

While we aren’t there just yet, there is a growing trend towards using artificial intelligence (AI) in the commercial real estate industry.

For any other commercial real estate professionals who have taken on the laborious task of abstracting an 80-page lease with 10 amendments, AI might be very welcomed technology. Just recently, AI has made significant improvements in speech and language recognition which has improved its reliability. With this progress, a number of companies, such as Leverton and InteLease, have been able to offer more consistently accurate lease abstracting services using technology.

How do they do it, you ask? Deep Learning, which Investopedia defines as “A subset of machine learning in AI that has networks capable of learning unsupervised from data that is unstructured or unlabeled”. Inspired by the neural networks of the human brain, Deep Learning produces software that is able to learn to recognize patterns in sounds, images and other forms of data. Employing this software to automatically extract all pertinent information from documents and place into the platform of your choice makes lease abstraction much less daunting than in the past.

While I haven’t personally used AI to perform lease abstracting (yet), it is certainly intriguing.

A few of our clients have done trial-runs to test it out, and the feedback they’ve shared with me is that, on the positive side, the turnaround times are quick and it is an affordable option.

On the negative side, they weren’t always able to abstract each of the fields they needed to have access to in a timely manner and didn’t have the ability to ask questions specific to the documents by the abstractor. Ultimately, there were a few interpretative matters that fell back on the client to assess.

What are your thoughts on artificial intelligence? Yay or nay?