The Zillow app is a photo-driven app that puts good use to the multi-touch screen and let’s users search a large map where they can touch to zoom into neighborhoods and cities. Once in a particular neighborhood you can flip through photographs of homes in that area, compare them side by side, and drag them into a favorites folder. The Zillow app is available as a free download from the iTunes store. The Zillow app, however, does not include an MLS (multiple listing service) feature, which is probably the reason that it is a free app, however, you can refine searches by price, size, or type and share homes of interest via email or Facebook.
The second app to make the platform leap to the iPad is the ZipRealty app, from the Emeryville-based online reality brokerage. Closely modeled after their iPhone app, the ZipRealty app is more information based, allowing users to see information on listed and recently sold homes in more than 4,000 cities and neighborhoods nationwide on the iPad’s large-format touchscreen. The app will automatically sync with your ZipRealty account after you log in, but other than that, there aren’t too many features that stand out on their own, or make very good use of the iPad’s large touchscreen.
The iPad isn’t only for apps though, what if you’re a tech-savvy agent who got their hands on the iPad already? GeekEstateBlog.com posted a nice article outlining a few things that agents could do with their new tablets to help them sell homes.
* Build a fun, interactive signup sheet for visitors. You could let them choose to subscribe to various value add lists right there, and depending on what you use it for, you could put their info right in your list/ database, no tedious transcribing later.
* Set it on a table and play your virtual tour and slideshow w/ music.
* Let visitors dig deeper with links to your website/ blog posts about the area.
* Show them all the awesome neighborhood places on Yelp (if it’s in your area of course)
* If the listing isn’t for them, search other open houses in the area and email it to them (I smell contact info…
* Integrate a video resume into your keynote (the mac’s powerpoint) presentation, make the entire presentation paperless, and email it to prospects right after you’re done.
Buyer Tours/ Showings:
* Plug one of the last remaining holes in the paperless transaction: just save a pdf of all the listing sheet’s you’d normally print.
*If your MLS works on Safari, then you can easily search listings on the fly in places too fluid for a laptop (walking down the street, crowded cafes, in listings, etc). This gives you something better to do than stand there like an idiot while your client searches listings on their Redfin iPhone app
* Take notes directly into your online CRM/ organization software, with no risk of losing them and no tedious transcribing later.
* Potentially in the near future, record your client’s feedback and have it automatically transcribed for you, just like Google Voice does now with messages (this isn’t here yet but it’s just a matter of time).
* Have all your client’s info (kid’s names, etc) always at your fingertips for those with less than stellar memories.
The iPad certainly won’t revolutionize home buying or selling, but it will definitely put a new spin on things… Leave your comments below!