There has been a lot of buzz about the formation of a national database that NAR (National Association of Realtors®) announced last November called the Realtors® Property Resource. NAR acquired the technology to create RPR including a database of licensed data and secured data aggregation services from LPS Real Estate Group in November of last year. Everyone has been asking if it’s going to make MLS obsolete or if it intends to be a Zillow-killer. Well, yesterday a blog was launched to help explain and educate agents and the public about what it will feature, and how it will be used. RPRBlog has some great demo videos and FAQs that detail what’s under the hood and how NAR envisions it will be used.
The amount of data RPR™ intends to incorporate is massive and the tools they are developing to assist Realtors® in utilizing this information are amazing. If it lives up to the hype, it could be the single most important tool that has been developed for real estate agents since the development of MLS boards around the country. This will be a massive online real estate library and archive that will provide real estate professionals with data on every property in the United States.
RPR will include in-depth information on every parcel of real property including public record information, details of prior transactions, MLS information (when provided), zoning info, tax data, and a variety other relevant information that has never been correlated in one place before.
Zestimate on Steroids
Many homeowners and agents have used Zillow’s Zestimator to refine the AVM (automated value model) that Zillow uses to come up with and estimated market value. While this was a clever and advanced tool when it was introduced, it is far from perfect. Zillow still recommends getting a real estate professional to help fine-tune the results. RPR’s valuation method, called RVM (Realtors® valuation model) takes it much further. It draws on the Realtors® own market knowledge to take into consideration local market factors.
One data source that is being integrated into the database to help with home evaluations is the Realtor® and Remodeling magazine’s annual Cost vs. Value Report. This report has been compiled for a number of years by a variety of industry experts for a number of the main national real estate markets to see how different improvements affect value based on location and value of the home. This shows, for example, how a deck in Miami overlooking the ocean will add more value than a deck in an inner-city location with no view. This helps dial in more accurate valuations.
Localized Marked Updates
Agents will log on to a localized homepage that is customizable with scrolling news bar to keep up to date on both national and local news. They will also see maps of all the changes in listings in their area, including price changes and foreclosure properties. All NAR agents will have access to the website, regardless of whether the local MLS participates or not. I’ve not heard from the NWMLS and there is no information on their website that says if they will be among the MLS organizations participating nationally. Obviously most Realtors® would love to have these tools and be a part of this. But NWMLS is broker owned so they may have a different perspective.
The estimated launch of the site is 2nd quarter of 2010, so I am sure we will be hearing much more about this.