How A Real Estate API Can Identify Those “Spillover” Neighborhoods Next To Hot Markets

real estate api

A Real Estate API can be an effective tool to take advantage of popular markets and paint a picture why neighborhoods nearby are the “next big thing.”

We all know and love those trendy neighborhoods. That’s the place people covet where the homes are pretty (and usually large), streets are clean, landscaping is immaculate, schools are great and it’s surrounded by chic restaurants and shops.

Residents of that area are fortunate to live there, but unfortunately for brokers and agents farming that area, it’s a challenge.

The inventory of homes for sale in those markets might be extremely low, or even non-existent. And when somebody finally decides to put their property on the market, they may have lost their minds when it comes to pricing.

Real Estate API can spot new hot markets

Fortunately for brokers and agents, there are effective tools, such as a Real Estate API, that can help them create a scenario to promote adjacent neighborhoods as the “next best place” to buy.

A Real Estate API is basically like a door to a giant library of relevant property data – recent home sales, trends in home prices, school information, school attendance zones, boundaries, neighborhood data, crime ratings, demographics, etc.

With a few snippets of code,  that door can reside on an agent’s website. On any page.

Of course, it would be impossibly time-consuming for an agent to amass all this data.

But there are national data aggregators such as Home Junction that gather all this information for you. They filter the information, organize it and segment it by geographic boundaries.

Those boundaries are key.

Because if you are working on “spillover” markets, you want data not just for that zip code, but parsed all the way down to neighborhoods or subdivisions.

When you have that neighborhood-specific data, you can do wonders.

For example, a buyer wants to purchase a home in Trendy Oaks. But as we said, it’s likely there aren’t any homes for sale or the price of that lone home on the market is in the upper stratosphere.

However, with your Real Estate API embedded on your website, a broker or agent can show home shoppers how Next Door Oaks is starting to heat up as a hot neighborhood as well.

With a data feed that display Recent Home Sales in a trending chart, a buyer can easily see how home sales are starting to take off like a rocket.

Another chart can show the same for prices (Better make an offer now!).

School data is a powerful persuader

School data can be another huge factor.

With current School Attendance Zone data, an agent can point out how that neighborhood also qualifies for children living there to attend the same school as Trendy Oaks children.

These zones are critical. And hard to keep up with.

They do change, depending on shifts in student numbers. They can also be different for different grade levels. While the children in one neighborhood can attend a middle school down the street, it’s doesn’t mean they can attend the same high school as the students do next door.

There’s other data as well that can be supplied by a Real Estate API.

Take neighborhood demographics. An agent can use that information to show prospective buyers how the ages, incomes, family sizes, etc. of people in Trendy Oaks matches these neighborhoods next door.

But what’s really cool, is that the average home prices are much less. At least for now.

Hey Mr. and Mrs. Home Shopper, time to make a move.

Use geo-coding to point out signs of gentrification

Other data points for “Places of Interest” can be the proverbial icing on the cake.

Naturally, Whole Foods, Starbucks, Trader Joe’s and all the cool shops and stores are going to want to be located near the hot neighborhoods.

With a geo-coded spatial plug-in, integrated with MLS listings, an agent can show buyers how certain neighborhoods are located relatively close to those trendy retail stores.

Or, they can point out on a map, how some new stores are about to pop up next to new neighborhoods. A sure sign that gentrification is taking place and that area is about to become more popular.

Conversely, a Real Estate API with this massive amount of hyper-local real estate market data can be a very persuasive tool when making a presentation to a potential seller.

This data gives you a powerful story to tell. Distribute all these positive neighborhood attributes out to homeowners on a regular basis via social media, direct mail and even phone calls.

Create top of mind awareness in homeowners that you are the agent with the local knowledge and the local data to back it up.

Perception is not reality. People might want to live in that hot neighborhood and think they’ll just have to wait until something opens up.

But with your Real Estate Data API supplying you with real facts, an agent can point out how there are other similar neighborhoods starting to blossom, and smart buyers will jump on board.

 

WordPress Real Estate Themes Can Help Your Website Stay Mobile-Fast And Google Friendly

wordpress real estate themes mobile

WordPress Real Estate Themes should get a quick look by brokers and agents for one simple reason.

Speed.

On the web, speed sells

For Google, speed is one of the critical factors that they will reward websites with better rankings for real estate related searches.

And where do you need to be speedy? Think mobile devices.

In recent blogs we talked about the big switch to mobile taking place in the webisphere.

According to BrightEdge research from last year, 57% of online traffic now happens on mobile devices – smartphones and tablets.

Only 43% is seen on traditional desktops.

For Realtors, they have to know mobile is big. When people are on the hunt for homes, they check their mobile devices regularly, even dozens of times a day.

Therefore if you want their business, and this is more than half the market, your website had better be mobile-friendly.

The text needs to be readable. Navigation needs to be easy to use. Images load correctly.

Not just on iPhones, but on Android phones. Not just on  cell phones, but on tablets too.

In previous blogs we mentioned this in detail and how WordPress Real Estate Themes are coded to be mobile friendly.

WordPress developers constantly provide updates so the software keeps current with mobile needs.

Therefore, the first goal of every broker and agent is to be sure their website is mobile-ready. If not, consider WordPress Real Estate Themes.

Before we go to the second goal, which is just as important, here’s a number to keep in mind.

That number is 3.

Because here’s the second challenge. Not only do you need a mobile-friendly website, it needs to load quickly.

In fact not just quick, but hyper-fast.

Here’s the reality – Google researchers found that on average a consumer will abandon a mobile page if it doesn’t load in around 3 seconds.

What they also found is that many major websites that you would think would have their mobile-act together, were taking way too long to load.

Google sees from their visitor data that this is how web users are surfing. So Google is putting on a big push for mobile speed and in fact, they are warning major companies they had better get their mobile act together.

For one, Google is rewarding fast mobile websites with higher rankings.

Don’t be deceived into thinking that if your desktop site is fast, your mobile website will also be fast.

These are two different animals and Google is treating them as such. In fact, Google reported in the past two years they have developed separate and specific algorithms just for mobile websites.

As we pointed out, since more traffic is now mobile, you don’t want to be left behind in that race.

Check your mobile website.

Here’s a tool from Google to see if your website is mobile-ready.

https://search.google.com/test/mobile-friendly

Here’s a tool from Google to check out the Page Speed of your mobile website (and your desktop for that matter).

https://developers.google.com/speed/pagespeed/insights/

WordPress Real Estate Themes can help you be mobile-first

With Google’s new emphasis on mobile-first, it would be wise for brokers and agents to re-evaluate how they are going to keep up with this paradigm shift.

Many of you might think – “Geez, I just got my desktop website where I want it to be and now you tell me I have to focus on mobile.”

Yep. Well, we are not telling you this, Google is. (And most assuredly, so is Bing).

When you re-evaluate your Internet strategies, this might just be the time to take a look at WordPress Real Estate Themes.

The beauty of WordPress is that this platform is the leading content-management software in the world.

Nearly 30% of all business websites now use WordPress.

Secondly, experienced developers such as Home Junction already have pre-coded WordPress Real Estate Themes.

So you don’t have to build a real estate website with photo galleries, lead forms, listing pages, etc. As you may know, building a website from scratch can be costly and usually takes longer than anticipated.

Creating a WordPress real estate website can be done quickly.

WordPress real estate plugins instantly add great features

Next, because WordPress is open-sourced and so popular, there are literally tens of thousands of plug-ins (like Smartphone apps) out there to enhance a website.

Home Junction has developed a whole set of WordPress real estate plug-ins that are geared for home shoppers.

Those plug-ins include feeds for School Data, Recent Property Sales, Home Value Estimators and many others. All specifically made for Realtors.

In this technological era, things change. Fast.

Samsung just introduced a new foldable phone that looks like a regular smartphone…but then can be opened up to display a screen that is tablet size. (If you ever watched “Westworld” on HBO, you had to know these devices were coming).

Consider pre-coded, mobile-ready WordPress Real Estate Themes so you can keep up with these changes in the web world because these changes will be coming at you fast.

 

 

 

 

Real Estate Data API Can Help Save A Sale When A Client Ghosts You

A Real Estate Data API with hyper-local market data can be a lifesaver when it comes to a buyer who gets the jitters and is about to change their mind.

If you’ve been in the real estate business for more than a minute, you’ve probably experienced this situation.

Everything is going great, the buyer loves the house, the seller is motivated, and an offer is ready to be made.

But suddenly, the buyer starts to stall when it comes to providing financial information. Calls and voicemails go unreturned, and you start to wonder if your client has gotten cold feet and the deal is off.

What can you do, as a real estate agent, to help your client stick with a plan or be more decisive?

Real estate data API supplies facts, not feelings

So what are some of the reasons you might stop hearing from a buyer you thought was committed?

The main one is financial issues. All too often, shoppers overestimate their available funding, credit score, and potential loan amounts while making decisions.

They get swept along in the process, and when it comes down to hard numbers, the shock and realization set in. Staring at the total payout for a 30-year mortgage can do that to a person.

In cases like these, the buyer may be embarrassed or afraid to admit to an agent what their real situation is since they have already spent time and effort on them.

If you start to sense that there is insufficient transparency coming from your seller, it could be a sign that the deal isn’t happening.

This could happen regarding any number of issues – from home inspections to leaving their neighbors.

You may also start to notice that they are unenthusiastic about selling, and don’t seem at all happy or excited.

They may drag their feet on cleaning, packing, staging, paperwork, and other things. In this case, there could be an emotional component to their cold feet: a sadness or reluctance to leave their home.

Support your clients with market data

In the case of a financial issue, you can ward off inaction by encouraging buyers to be proactive about their finances before making any serious housing decisions.

Of course, they should get pre-approved for a home loan to find out how much they will have to work with. They should also meet with an adviser to talk about costs of home ownership, property taxes, and down payments, as there are many more costs involved in buying a house besides just the listing price.

As your clients look to you as the expert, you can gently and kindly steer them toward having these things taken into consideration before matching them with the perfect listing.

When working with sellers, your job is to be a good and unbiased listener if they need to process the fact that they will be moving out of their house.

You can provide both a listening ear and accountability at the same time – not to mention help them see all the positives of selling and help them get excited about where they’re going next!

real estate data API

Aside from emotional support, use hard data and facts to keep your clients on their path.

With a Real Estate Data API from national data aggregators such as Home Junction, an agent has the tools to point out the financial advantages of buying and selling.

Perhaps homes sales in their neighborhood are in a high upward swing. Or, show them home sales in neighborhoods next door and how those homeowners are taking advantage of a hot market.

Same goes for pricing activity. Show buyers and sellers the data on your website pointing to increases in home prices. Buyers need to move fast. Owners can cash out at a peak time in the market.

With a home value estimator tool from Home Junction, the buyer or seller can see where a property is positioned in a market based on Sales Price, Square Footage, Age and Price Per Square Foot.

Maybe a buyers is hesitant. Show them how this property is actually priced in the lower 10% for price per square foot and in the upper 30% for square footage.

Hmmm, that house looks much more attractive now, doesn’t it?

Local real estate data mapping tools integrated with an MLS can show them other real reasons why they need to make a decision and stick to it: highly rated schools near the property; shopping, transportation, and golfing nearby. Maybe a train station down the street.

Some clients won’t settle for “just talking” and have to be shown the numbers in order to be impressed!

It’s not just you

If a deal falls through, an agent may be tempted to wonder if they did something wrong.

Chances are they didn’t.

The recent NAR Confidence Survey Index from August shows 76% of contracts settled on time.

The reasons for delays mostly centered on financing (36%), appraisal issues (18%) and home inspections (17%).

Others may have an issue with committing to that mortgage, insurance and property taxes when they had a nice simple monthly rental payment before.

However, instead of building up wealth for their landlord, with your Real Estate Data API you can assure them that investing in a home is a solid financial decision to build their own wealth.

Because here are two other very important points that an agent can illustrate with a Real Estate Data API. Interest rates are a big concern. But those rates have been at historic lows. Waiting for rates to drop might not be a good idea because they could continue to go up. Show current homes prices and what the monthly payments will be for those prices.

Which brings us to the second issue reported by the NAR – low inventory. Show the real estate market data for the neighborhoods you are farming. Perhaps homes sales are dropping because homes for sale are scarce. Another reason for a reluctant buyer to make a move.

Adding this real estate market data and charts to a website alongside home listings, also lets consumers do their own research and convince themselves buying or selling is a smart decision.

Stay proactive by advising buyers to get their finances in order early, and use a local Real Estate Data API to show the financial benefits to help your clients from letting their emotions give them cold feet.

How A Real Estate API Can Keep Your Real Estate Marketing, New, Fresh and Engaging

real estate apiA Real Estate API is a valuable asset when it comes to content for one key reason – freshness.

As a broker and agent, you need a constant stream of new customers. Once your current customers are in their new home or out of their existing home and on their way to a new location, your service is done (until they need the same service a few years later).

Therefore, you need  a constant stream of new customers and new leads.

To attract new customers, you need a constant stream of new information to catch their attention.

You can’t keep up client volume with stale or sporadic marketing techniques – especially when it comes to social media.

So how can you ensure that you are consistently marketing to your target audience with fresh and interesting content?

Real estate APIs addresses the wants of different groups

Finding out exactly the type of information that would spark interest in your clients is the first step before spending time or money on the actual marketing actions.

Some are young families interested in the best schools.

A few are young couples looking for their first home.

Others are investors looking to rehab properties.

Maybe they have specific interests such as golf or hiking or yoga and want to live near those amenities.

When you know who you’re talking to, you can begin to create a list of both original and shared content to distribute in order to attract a specific crowd.

Measure your results

With a Real Estate API, a broker or agent has a wealth of data coming into their website. They don’t have to constantly look for updates on schools. They also don’t need to send prospects to other websites for local real estate market data such as homes sales.

Real estate data aggregators such as Home Junction do all of this work. All you do is add the Real Estate API, which is essentially just a few lines of code embedded into your website.

They can post that data on different pages. Integrate it with MLS listings.

School Data next to properties for sale. Perhaps a separate page on local Market Activity.

The same can be done with social media. Post a link to a chart showing the latest trends in Home Prices.

Definitely use that content to enhance email blasts. Don’t just send listing information. Show how the number of homes sold in on their market has changed.

Compare one market to another to show why now is the time to buy. Or show neighborhood demographics and average home prices.

Keep a close eye on your marketing results. What type of content are people clicking on? Which article resulted in more leads? Or phone calls?

Tracking results will help you see the type of content people want to read. The great advantage a broker or agent has over other businesses, is that just one solid lead can lead to a big commission.

Use local real estate data to generate topics

Whatever your content, it must be fresh and relevant.

By using adding a Real Estate API with hyper-local data, you have instant access to endless content ideas.

Has a popular local school been in the news lately? Share it.

Are home prices in a certain neighborhood skyrocketing? Write a blog about it.

What are the housing trends in your city? Create a social media infographic about them.

This data isn’t just useful for helping clients find what they’re looking for via your website: you can use the data yourself to bring the useful information directly to them via your blog, newsletter, and social media.

And the best part? As this information is always being updated, you’ll never run out of fresh topics to disseminate.

Manage your marketing hours effectively

If you don’t come up with a marketing plan and stick to it, you’ll quickly burn out and feel discouraged by throwing everything you’ve got at the wall and hoping something sticks.

Many top earners balance their time by setting aside one day at the end of the month to plan out and schedule all of their marketing content.

This could include writing blogs, creating social media graphics, and writing newsletters.

Tools such as Facebook, Mailchimp, and HootSuite allow you to schedule these things to go out on the day and time of your choice, freeing up a lot of your time that otherwise might have been spent hunched over the phone or computer.

While you are likely working with a team or under a firm, you should still cultivate your own brand to help you stand out from the pack.

Colors, logos, writing styles, and your own unique voice are all things that can make up your personal brand.

Every piece of information you put out to market your real estate business must be consistent with your brand.

When you create content such as social media graphics, be sure you are using the same fonts, colors, and types of images consistently or your audience will become confused and distrusting.

You don’t have to rely on Facebook and mass postcards.

Consider branching out and trying something different. Is your target market a Millenial? Use Instagram and Snapchat.

Is your target market a trend-savvy mom? Start creating home design boards along with local real estate market data on Pinterest.

Education-based marketing can be very helpful in service businesses, so consider a blog series based using local real estate data. Perhaps a YouTube video, or an online class or webinar.

Marketing your real estate business doesn’t have to be an endless source of frustration.

By making a plan and sticking to it, and getting fresh content ideas by using local data, you can set up your marketing to work for you: not the other way around.

Humans are wired to be attracted to anything new. New gadgets, new clothes, new TV shows or new recipes.

A Real Estate API is an automatic content generator that can help you attract new clients with new data.