Location, Location, Location
The famous phrase is often used to describe real estate. That “perfect” location may be is not the same for every buyer and varies based on a variety of different factors. A new site tries to help them on this mission. Optimalhomelocation.com trys to suggest the perfect home location by analyzing where you go most often including work, the gym, shopping, etc.
Users enter in the location of places they frequent (other than their current home location). The site then calculates the central home location. They are then asked to enter in the order of the places the frequent (gym, work, Starbucks, movie theater, etc) for each family/household member.
The Optimal Home Location is then suggested.
The goal of the site is to provide potential home buyers a look into what their commute will be like for each family member (go green!), neighborhood demographics and affordability, and information on local resources such as schools, libraries, Starbucks, etc.
Home buyers can print out a report with this information. The site provides interesting information for people who know exactly where they commute to and from and don’t necessarily intend to change these locations if they move.
My sense, however, is that home buyers who know where they are commuting to and don’t have any intention of changing schools, gyms already know their ideal home location.
The buyers who most need a tool to help them identify the perfect location are either new to the area or are most likely plan to change their commute patterns, making it difficult to use the tool.
It looks pretty but without more detailed neighborhood information, I don’t see it being terribly valuable. Perhaps coupled with neighborhood blog posts with slideshows and more detailed information, it could be a useful tool.
December 17, 2008 at 8:40 pm
Ginger – I see what you’re saying about the (doubtful) usefulness of this product, but here’s what I see. If a site came along and used this info as one of their tools in the arsenal, it could become more useful. I was thinking about Dwellicious as an example. Being able to take the homes you’ve been plotting and bookmarking, then running them through the Optimal Home Location algorithm would allow someone to see that maybe a home they thought might work, might not be the best choice for them in terms of location. I know that although people often have a good idea of where they want to live, they sometimes are missing a particular area, because of lack of personal knowledge (which is where we can help). Even as an agent who drives around and likes to take the “long way” (so I can discover new areas that I might not have bumped into before), I sometimes am shocked to find neighborhoods that are tucked away down a long winding road (I just had this experience the other day). By bringing this information together with other information, it might prove very useful to the user.
What do you think of its use in that way?
December 18, 2008 at 5:31 am
I saw this tool the other day and played with it a bit. As it is, it doesn’t seem very useful, but the concept itself is brilliant – if it could be implemented as an overlay with deep and rich data – demographics, coffee shops, crime, housing … then I think that it would be a very useful tool for Realtors, buyers, and large companies that are seeking to entice people to relocate to their areas.
December 18, 2008 at 1:22 pm
Matt and Jim,
I agree completely with both of you- the concept is fabulous, it just needs to be taken further to be truly useful. In its current state, it is too basic. By delving deeper and combining it with other tools, it could be valuable to both agents and home buyers.