WASHINGTON (November 11, 2014) – Advances in mobile technology have the potential to radically change the ways consumers search for real estate online, according to a session at the 2014 REALTORS® Conference & Expo that peered into what can happen in the future regarding big data and real estate.
At the session, National Association of Realtor®’s Managing Director of Data Analytics Todd Carpenter discussed how big data and mobile computing can be leveraged by brokers, agents and real estate portals to more effectively market homes to consumers. Attendees also gained insight into how evolving mobile technologies will allow consumers to assemble personal, intuitive real estate searches without the guidance of a web marketing portal.
According to Carpenter, the Internet of Things, which is using and transferring data over networks through a device and without human-to-human or human-to-computer interaction, will transform consumers’ experience of searching for real estate online. He shared big data examples, including mobile apps that are already revolutionizing the way individuals go about their day, such as tracking daily physical activity, navigating traffic in real-time and managing a home thermostat from afar.
“A buyer could eventually ask an agent about how a home functions – such as how well it heats or the amount of electricity it uses during certain parts of the day – and receive an immediate answer with detailed graphics and analysis,” said Carpenter. “That information may not be readily available to buyers today, but it’s coming soon as more individuals use their smartphone to connect their home to the internet.”
Added Carpenter, “Everything from transportation to the healthcare industry are helping individuals make informed decisions about their lives based on data collected from their smartphone. These advances in mobile technology will make it easier for Realtors® to communicate valuable information to their clients during the home buying and selling process.”
Carpenter said IoT and predictive analytics are helping the real estate industry better understand transaction and market data to the benefit of the industry, agents and consumers. The amount of data collected will likely continue to increase and will be used more to predict buyer and seller behavior as well as trends in home preferences and neighborhoods. This includes highly-customized home searches that encompass factors such as proximity to work, public schools and restaurants.
“Realtors® should educate themselves about big data and be knowledgeable of how it’s being collected through mobile devices,” said Carpenter. “Buyers will increasingly use their smartphone during the search process – often times before first talking to an agent. Realtors® who adapt and embrace big data will add considerable value to their relationship with clients.”
Last year NAR launched a new Predictive Analytics group that examines and analyzes member and customer trends from a variety of data sets to help the association’s members make better business decisions and meet the needs of their clients.
The National Association of Realtors®, “The Voice for Real Estate,” is America’s largest trade association, representing 1 million members involved in all aspects of the residential and commercial real estate industries.