Let’s look at five technology companies that are changing how the real estate industry operates:
- HouseCanary uses data for real estate appraisals: Co-founded by Jeremy Sicklick, HouseCanary was the result of Sicklick’s realization that despite the residential real estate market being a $30 trillion business, there was no reliable home appraisal products. He and partner, Chris Stroud, created a program to aggregate and analyze data, making it possible for Realtors, investors and lenders to make decisions using real-time information. The data is available in the cloud to access anywhere. The company hopes to streamline financing in the future. Source: Forbes
- Nancy Almodovar, a top 25 broker: Houston, TX, broker Nancy Almodovar is a top 25 broker. Almodovar says using technology has allowed her to set herself apart from other brokers. Older companies take longer to embrace technology, she says. “Keeping heads of the departments that specialize on these facets of the company is very important because this is day to day work that constantly has to be analyzed, studied and reworked,” Almodovar says. Source: Forbes
- Crowdfunding raises money for investment: Real estate crowdfunding platforms such as Fundrise are changing how investors secure funds. Fundrise also allows anyone to become an investor. The platform accepts investments as low as $100 for commercial properties. The average return on investment is between 12% and 14%. The low investment threshold sets Fundrise apart from other crowdfunding platforms, including Realty Mogul and The Carlton Group’s new app, which are aimed at traditional investors. The startup recently secured $31 million in funding to start its platform. Source: Hedge Fund Blog
- HomePocket, an app for real estate agents: HomePocket uses software to form a mobile network for real estate agents, giving them access to data analytics. Earlier this month, the developers announced an upgrade called LeadWallet Marketing Insights. This upgrade monitors agent’s websites. “An agent’s website should be their number 1 lead generation tool,” HomePocket co-founder Jason Polancich said. “But it isn’t a set it and forget it resource. Too many agents pay for inexpensive website development and hosting and wait for leads to come in. In reality, customer habits and search index algorithms change monthly and if you aren’t regularly tuning your site to keep up with those changes, you fall out of the index and suffer poor search visibility.” The upgrade is in response to homebuyers’ increased used of the internet in their home-buying search. The software keeps track of website visitors’ demographics so agents can customize marketing. Source: Realty Biz News
- Compass, social media for real estate: Brokerage company Compass has plans to build a website similar to Pinterest. Called Collections, like Pinterest, it would allow users to build boards. With Collections, however, the boards in which the users have an interest. Buyers can then discuss their chosen properties with their Realtor. The company says the service puts buyers in charge of the selection process and gives Realtors another marketing tool. Source: The Real Deal
Melina Druga is an author and freelance journalist. You can follow her on Twitter @MelinaDruga .