Hyperlocal Marketing

Uncovering the Fallacy That Big Real Estate Data Can Only Be Offered By Big Players

Various experts are saying they believe big real estate data is only going to be the domain of the mega real estate sites such as Zillow, Trulia, Realtor.com and others.

One person even said, “It will become increasingly difficult for individual real estate agents to be visible to consumers both online and offline as the consumers follow the larger data sources online.”

Not so. It might appear that way. But that’s the big misconception.

It used to be that way, but the beauty of the current state of data technology is how it is leveling the playing field.

And by no means does this portend the end of the individual real estate agent’s website as a valuable source of information.

Because what’s happened is that there are providers, such as Home Junction, that are able to gather, curate and process big real estate data in a way where they can give access to individual agents with just as much big data as the big guys.

Here’s a key point: An agent doesn’t need a massive amount of national data. They just need a massive amount of hyper-local data relevant to their marketplace. That’s certainly achievable.

The big advantage for local agents is that these agents don’t need gigantic server farms to process and manage this data. They don’t need an entire research team dedicated to sourcing huge amounts of hyper-local data. And they don’t need a huge IT team crunching, curating and displaying this data.

It’s all done simply by partnering with a real estate data provider such as Home Junction.

For example, with Home Junction, here is some of the data an agent can feature access to on their site:

  • Home Values – the latest trends including pricing.
  • Local Interest – all the local attractions and businesses in a particular region.
  • Recent Sales – the latest sales with prices and graphs displaying trend lines.
  • School data – number of teachers, number of students, gender, lunch program, etc.
  • Points of Interest – all the local attractions and businesses in a particular region, e.g. movie theaters, restaurants, golf course, etc.
  • Neighborhoods
  • Demographics – average residency, education, workforce, etc.
  • Weather
  • Cost of Living Index

Not enough? How about adding geo-spatial capabilities so all those properties and amenities can be displayed on a map for any part of the country as well.

Now are you impressed?

That’s a Wealth of HyperLocal Marketing

A wealth of data that even a part-time, fresh out of school real estate agent can add to their site and immediately put themselves on a comparable resource level as Zillow or Trulia.

And this data can be integrated with an MLS feed. So an agent can display this warehouse of hyper-local data alongside home listing data.

Don’t believe the scare tactics. Sure, the big real estate sites with their giant offices, scores of employees and tons of computers can claim to have a bunch of real estate data. But when a local real estate agent partners with a big data provider such as Home Junction, they can have the tools to provide that data to consumers just as well if not better.

Add that to the local knowledge advantage that only a local real estate agent possesses, and you’ve got a huge winning combination.

To find out how you can become a big real estate data champion in a small market, contact Home Junction here.

Geography Of Real Estate

It Was Geography, Not People, Who Shaped History

Traditionally, the way we learn about history is through the characters involved.
Genghis Khan, George Washington, Napoleon Bonaparte, George Patton, etc.
But one writer, Sir Barry Cunliffe, argues that it wasn’t characters who shaped history, it was geography.
Geography was incredibly important then, as it is now. The geography of real estate is especially important. And that’s why it’s important to feature the best geo-spatial tools in real estate on your website — SpatialMatch map search.
Cunliffe has some credibility. He’s emeritus professor of European archaeology at Oxford. The guy’s also a knight. Sir Barry, to you. And he’s written a respected treatise on the subject – “Europe Between The Oceans.”
Sure personalities played a part. But Cunliffe says it was geography that really shaped destiny.
He points out the importance of geo-spatial factors such as:
– sailing routes
– terrain – the easier the trail, the more it was used
-proximity to technology, e.g. skilled chariot builders or ship builders
-climate
– soil salinity
-trade between cultures (and wars if they didn’t get along)
-wind patterns
Obviously, there’s much more to the equation. What’s interesting is how this applies to your immediate marketplace today. Yeah, things are different in Silicon Valley. Or the open coal mines of Gillette, Wyoming. Or the location of Amazon warehouses in Kentucky. Think about the effect geography has on your area. Where are the jobs? Where are the highways? Transportation centers? Educational centers? Recreational areas?
As Cudliffe notes, these places are important. More important than most people might realize initially when looking for a home. But underneath the surface, the geography of real estate has a tremendous impact.
With geo-spatial map-based tools such as SpatialMatch, you have a handle on this element in the real estate equation.
That’s powerful. With SpatialMatch, you can show MLS listings in relation to location because the properties are integrated into a map. And integrated into the map is an enormous data widget of thousands of locations — schools, businesses, parks, boundaries, highways, airports, train stations and naturally, homes for sale.
Of course, people would rather read about William the Conqueror than read about the location of iron ore mines.
But the location of iron ore mines shaped history.
Geography shapes your local market. Show buyers and sellers you realize the importance of the geography of real estate with SpatialMatch embedded on your site and your ability to point out all the key locations in an area.
To read about Cudliffes’ book, click here.
Big Data In Real Estate

Articles on How to Find the Best Agent Are Missing the Point on Big Data In Real Estate

There are several articles circulating on the web about how to choose a real estate agent. They all seem to say the same thing, and they all also miss out on a few important qualities that brokers and agents should possess in this day and age. One of these qualities includes the latest real estate big data technology. But more on that later.

Here are some of the usual tips these articles include when looking for an agent:

– Talk with recent clients. Sure, good advice. But be wary, any professional can always keep a handful of happy clients in their back pocket, even if 80% of their other clients were not satisfied.

– Look up licensing and certifications. Are they a member of the National Association of Realtors? Are they a Certified Residential Specialist? An Accredited Buyer’s Representative? Perhaps they are certified as a Seniors Real Estate Specialist. Doesn’t hurt to ask. Any certifications or awards are certainly helpful in determining the background of an agent.

– Pick a winner. This is subjective. How do you determine a winner? By the number of home sales in the past 12 months. By the number of their listings? Strong activity certainly indicates they have something going on.

– Check credentials.  Are they licensed? Where did they go to school?

– How long in business. This criteria can be deceiving. An agent or broker could be in the business for 20 years but they might not be the right person for you. Perhaps they are a part-time real estate agent, someone who plays golf every day and perhaps sells or lists a few homes every now and then. Is this person going to hustle for you? Probably not. But if there is someone who has been in business for 20 years and shows a tremendous track record, then you can see this person does work hard for their clients.

– Check their current listings. If people are listing with them, that’s a good sign. But also check the quality of the properties. If the agent has listings but most are just run down, low-priced properties, perhaps they are not truly leaders in the area.

– What is their knowledge of other homes in the market? This is huge. You want a person who knows the market inside and out. What homes are really selling for? Which prices are realistic, not crazily inflated? What’s the true value of certain properties? Which schools and other amenities are influencing the price and sale of homes.

Which bring us to the next point, a point missed by many articles about how to choose the best real estate agent.

This is 2015. The era of Big Data and the high-speed Internet. What about the technological credentials of a real estate agent? What can he or she bring to the table in terms of real estate big data?

Does that agent have the latest market information at their fingertips? Do they have it sparsed down to the hyperlocal markets? Can they show you a chart of home sales in particular neighborhoods?

Speaking of neighborhoods, what do they know about the surrounding area, which has a huge impact on property values and the particular amenities that home buyers want in a location?

Sure, an agent might be able to say, “Yes I know the schools. That school over there is okay and that school over there is not as popular for some reason.”

But what about hard data? Does that agent have access to student/teacher ratios? The number of students? The demographic breakdown of the student body? The name of the current principal.

An agent should not just be giving out anecdotal information they may have heard about a school, but should give a buyer access to facts. And the consumer should not have to go digging for that information, but should be able to find it on an agents website.

What about recent homes sales? Does the agent offer that information on that site as well? Or does a consumer have to surf through a myriad of sites trying to find that information and wondering the whole time if they are using a legitimate source?

Real estate is all about location, location, location. So, what is located close to the homes a consumer might consider buying?

Does the agent have any interactive maps where they can pull up, say, the closest golf courses? Or the nearest interstate? Or, the closest hospital? Italian restaurant? Gym? Bookstore?

Is that agent going to say, “I think there’s a pretty decent gym over there on Third Street.”

Or, are they going to have access to real estate big data that includes an enormous database of local amenities, such as personal fitness centers, so they can show consumers the proximity provided by each home location?

This is 2015. There are tools out there that real estate agents should be embedding on their website that gives consumers access to enormous an database of hyper-local information.

Home Junction is a provider of that hyper-local real estate big data. They have the apps to integrate massive amounts of data with any real estate website.

So consumers are going to be asking the usual questions they found somewhere on the web about how to pick a real estate agent. That list will include the usual, age-old items.

But what impact do you think an agent will have on a consumer if they show them they also have gathered this gold mine of enormous hyper-local big real estate data to help consumers make a decision on which home to buy? And they can customize that data to the personal preferences of each buyer.

That’s a question that doesn’t need an answer. It’s a given. In 2015, a time of iPads and smartphones where consumers have access to unlimited amounts of information, the impact an agent can have as a source of quality, local data is enormous.

It’s a game changer when it comes to selecting agent.

Sure, you need to address those other questions. But in this technological age, be sure to cover the technology angle.

To learn more about Home Junction and the huge local real estate big data widget you can add to your site that is sure to impress buyers, click here.