Even in the midst of the pandemic, deals involving real estate technology in the US totaled $7.3 billion in 2020. Fortunately, there are many real estate and rental websites for consumers to utilize, including Zillow, which receives more than 36 million monthly visits, making it the most popular website for those looking to rent or buy a home, according to Statista.
Of course, a market that is developing quickly has to eliminate room for error. All client needs must be met or else you will lose momentum. That’s why launching a solid real estate app can be used as a weapon against the competition.
In this article, we’ll explain how to build a real estate app and discuss everything you need to know to make your app successful.
What You’ll Learn in this Post
- What is a Real Estate App?
- Real Estate Market Trends
- Top 3 Real Estate Apps
- Under the Hood: Technical Considerations
- Steps to Build a Real Estate App
- Real Estate App Development Cost
- Idea Maker’s Experience In Real Estate
- Frequently Asked Questions
What Is a Real Estate App?
Real estate apps are tools that support services that real estate brokers or agents perform. These could include virtual 3D tours of the space, client and agent interaction, documentation, and property management. Such real estate mobile app development can be highly beneficial in minimizing paperwork and streamlining procedures.
Among emerging markets is real estate investment. Investors and agents are clamoring for solutions that enable possible monitoring of transactions. However, these apps must meet one requirement: they must be very adaptable.
Real Estate Market Trends
There are some real estate market trends that have redefined customer experience and affected the price of creating a real estate mobile app. These trends are discussed below:
Mobile App Usage
Mobile apps are another significant development in commercial real estate for 2022. Currently, the Google Play Store offers 3.48 million apps for download, while the Apple App Store has 2.22 million apps available.
There are several smartphone apps to buy, sell, browse properties, or find an agent, extending the ease to real estate market trends.
Today, buyers and sellers can also interact virtually as they search for appealing houses. This makes the entire procedure simple. However, to connect with clients who are on the go, a website must be mobile-responsive.
In order to improve the customer experience and give them access to the portal whenever and wherever they want, it’s necessary to prioritize real estate mobile app development.
Real estate tech businesses utilize augmented reality to boost online property search efficiency, fun, and convenience.
This popular property management technology development is great for property managers, as virtual tours of possible properties can be accessed right at your fingertips. Plus, when a virtual tour can provide step-by-step directions, there is no need to write out elaborate instructions. The National Association of Realtors reports that 46 percent of respondents considered virtual tours highly helpful, while 87 percent people found images very helpful.
This real estate innovation is having a significant impact on the market for AR and VR. In fact, when utilizing augmented reality, you can even superimpose photographs to produce a realistic architectural representation that will help potential buyers understand the property even before it is constructed. The designs of the property can then be modified and made customized via AR.
By using a well-organized database, customer relationship management (CRM) software implementation lets you manage your client relationships and interactions. With CRM, you can keep track of information like a customer’s contact information, the kind of property they’re looking for, and the date of your most recent encounter with them.
You’ll have plenty of time to devote to helping your clients, which is what’s really important. The use of CRM on real estate websites is not a new development in technology. However, it’s anticipated that the real estate sector will advance significantly by creating mobile apps for real estate agents.
Top 3 Real Estate Apps
Having an idea of what makes the top apps the best will help assist you when you create your own real estate app. Here are the most known real estate apps that can serve as a blueprint for you:
Apartments can be listed on Zillow for sale, rent, or lease, along with options to take a virtual tour of properties and get in touch with brokers. On Zillow, you may also browse properties through photos and video tours. Updates for specific properties can be sent to users via app notifications, as well.
Various private sellers who advertise their homes for sale, listing agencies, foreclosures, auctions, and different sources all add to the supply of property listings.
2. Xome Auctions
The best software for buying a property at an auction is Xome Auctions because of its comprehensive online bid listings. Like other programs, Xome Auctions shows information about the property, pictures, and locations on a map. However, it distinguishes itself as one of the best because it specifies if financing is offered or if a cash payment is required.
The Xome Auctions app, accessible from the Apple and Android app stores, features one of the biggest collections of rare assets. Users can place early bids on properties using Xome’s pre-auction capability. Xome also provides transparent bids and speedy closing.
The Redfin app offers a simple and approachable design. Users can look up neighborhood data and set up notifications to alert them when a home that fits their requirements becomes available.
Redfin earns money from listing fees, commissions, and advertising expenses. This speeds up the closing process and reduces stress for both the buyer and the seller since it deftly mixes cutting-edge technology with prompt and individualized human contact.
Essential Features of a Real Estate App
The main objective of creating a real estate app is to grab users’ attention and simplify the purchasing or selling process.
Of course, you don’t want to create just another useless real estate software for the app stores. For that reason, it’s crucial to monitor the most recent features and trends and include them in your app.
Here are some essential and modern features that any real estate app should have:
Live Map Integration
When developing a real estate or construction business app, the map proves to be a crucial component. The incorporation of interactive maps is the responsibility of the real estate development company, allowing you to provide users with accurate information.
You can simply showcase the important information and statistics about the properties. You might also consider including data about the neighborhood’s average income, crime rate, and location of nearby schools.
By including the relevant data that will be used in interactive services, you can also contribute to enhancing the maps in mobile apps for your real estate firm. The dynamic map function allows your potential consumers to obtain all the necessary information whenever they locate the property.
Another fundamental component of the real estate app is property shortlisting. You must display a list of available homes with all the relevant information in the listings. Users should have no trouble adding their listing if they want to rent, sell, or exchange their property. They should also be able to shortlist properties on a wishlist of sorts.
Due to the ongoing expansion of the property shortlisting, this will require a sizable database. In the future, there will be more users and, consequently, more listings, so make sure the database or servers are adaptable enough to handle the scale-up activities. Any real estate app must have a reliable database.
These profiles include in-depth facts about the property, including:
- Images and videos
- Price information
- Value propositions
- Neighborhood information
- Owner’s information
It’s important to note that more than 80 percent of customers base their decision to buy a home on the uploaded photographs and videos. The contact information for the realtor or the property owner may also need to be included in the property profiles.
Because providing users with comprehensive property information is essential when building a real estate app, you will need to add a call or direct messaging feature to move users to the next stage of the sales funnel.
There are several ways to link buyers and agents:
- Direct Calls
- Online Inquiry
- Scheduled Consultation
This feature will ensure that a buyer will be able to get in touch with the seller or dealer for more information if they are interested in a certain property.
Under the Hood: Technical Considerations
The tools and technology your mobile app developer uses will depend on the mobile operating system they are creating for. In addition, app security will be implemented, and cutting-edge technology will be used to offer new real estate app development.
Web applications with cross-platform or hybrid capabilities can be used with several mobile operating systems, as they expand quickly and serve a wider user base. However, because they were not created specifically for a particular mobile device, they typically operate slower compared to native apps.
Minimum Viable Product
Businesses frequently rely on investor or stakeholder support to raise money and launch a mobile initiative. Building trust in the product you’re pitching and its potential to produce the intended result is essential for gaining this buy-in to increase revenue and reduce check-out times.
The best way to get this support is to create an MVP, which enables you to test your concept before approaching investors. This guarantees that when you do, you’ll have a strong case showing the product’s market viability.
Stakeholders ultimately want to put money into products that will succeed. An MVP’s main benefit is that it gives stakeholders a tangible product they can see and use, and demonstrates the value of the proposed product. In addition, if investors support the project, the product can be released without making stakeholders wait months for a return on their investment.
Scalability may improve loading times, decrease update costs and time required, help avoid crashes and bugs, and even increase client loyalty. In other words, it’s important to prioritize scalability as soon as you begin the app development process.
After all, if the system you’re working on is unable to handle all the loads and complete functions and duties in every circumstance, failure will be the only alternative.
Developing a monetization plan is necessary to create a dependable source of money for mobile applications. Nevertheless, choosing the ideal app monetization strategy can occasionally be challenging because so many of them have been demonstrated to be effective.
The portal connects custom quotation tools with the administration platform under the mortgage subscription model. Brokers and agents may be marketed to in order to sell subscriptions. The app could also leverage the SaaS subscription model with tiered pricing, meaning the more they pay, the more features they gain access to.
The sales commissions model involves establishing a certain commission rate that the seller of the property must pay in order to list it on your app. You can choose the cost depending on the kind of property, its worth, and several other factors. Any properties sold on the real estate app could also pay a commission to the app owner.
The real estate industry is one of the most technologically sophisticated in using and applying emerging technologies like QR Codes, beacons, blockchain, NFC, and artificial intelligence.
As a result, real estate developers now have a number of advantages that help their company effectively market, sell, manage, and track present and potential customers.
App Store Optimization
App Store Optimization focuses on applications that use professional resources to raise the ranking of mobile platforms in app stores like the Apple App Store, Google Play, and the Windows Store.
The primary objective of ASO is almost always to increase app downloads, although secondary objectives can include:
- Increased brand awareness
- Positive evaluations and reviews of the app
- More reviews of apps published more frequently
- Audience participation
- Diversification of additional marketing channels
Google Search Ads
The location of your property should be the target audience for a Google Ads campaign for real estate.
In the past year, Google Ads’ location settings have changed, making it impossible to hyper-target only “people in” your area. People in, or often in, have been altered. You can place pay-per-click (PPC) ads on Google search results to drive traffic to the app store page.
You don’t want to turn away those who want to move, and those who frequently go somewhere or commute there for work are also likely to want to settle there.
Social Media Marketing
Social media may be a terrific method for buyers, sellers, and renters to start a conversation, offer guidance, and establish a long-lasting relationship.
You’ll also find a helpful list of dos and don’ts for agents to follow, as well as sample posts you can use in your real estate social media strategy. PPC ads can also be placed on social media, and organic content can be created at little to no cost.
4 Steps to Build a Real Estate App
Here are the measures you need to take to create a stunning real estate website if you want to grow your business like Zillow.
The first step in building a successful location real estate app is researching your customer demographic and determining the required features.
Real estate apps differ even if they all have the same function. Additionally, prominent apps like Zillow and Trulia gained popularity because of their unique features and high-quality material. You should also create a distinctive app with a distinctive value proposition (UVP).
It would be preferable to begin with market research and analysis, select a revenue strategy, learn everything you can about your rivals, and identify your target market. After that, you’ll be able to choose which aspects and unique qualities of your software will set it apart from similarly priced rivals.
The next step is to design the app based on its required features, paying careful attention to user interface (UI) and user experience (UX).
Your real estate app’s UI design and UX are what make it user-friendly. Even the most innovative features are useless if your software looks ugly. So, in order to optimize user experience, your app should have clear photos and videos, heatmaps, clear dropdown menus, and easy navigation.
Of course, your app’s UI design pattern shouldn’t be an exact copy of another app. The UX is similar to other real estate apps since it follows standard patterns that all consumers are accustomed to. To make your app stand out, UI/UX designers in a real estate app development firm must pay attention to it.
3. Develop and Test
The next stage is to actually code and develop the platform, matching the design. Then beta tests the app for errors. Once these are fixed, you can move to the next step.
The most critical stage in developing a mobile app is app testing. The app will undergo thorough testing to guarantee that it operates as anticipated in the consumer market.
Developer teams are urged to incorporate test procedures when creating app features. To ensure that the code blocks are functioning properly individually and collectively, they can run unit and integration tests. App codes are also put through rigorous testing by app testers.
App developers and testers can employ various technologies to make app testing simpler and more effective. App testing tools include Espresso for Android apps, XCTest for Apple apps, and Appium for hybrid apps.
4. Deliver and Maintain
Once you are confident that the software is functioning as intended and meeting all the planned requirements, release it to the market. Your developers will often and thoroughly release software features to the market using techniques like continuous integration or continuous delivery.
Your development team will adhere to deployment guidelines unique to each app store, such as the Apple App Store and Google Play Store. Apps cannot be created and then abandoned in the app store. Because the mobile OS is always being updated, you must also maintain your mobile app updated for it to function without errors.
Additionally, with time, bugs might appear. A development team will ensure to deliver updates on schedule, especially those dealing with app security.
Real Estate App Development Cost
You might be asking at this stage how much it costs to design a real estate app. Unfortunately, due to a number of factors, there is no conclusive solution. The intricacy of your software, whether you are creating it yourself or outside, and its general characteristics are a few of them.
The project manager will ensure that deadlines are met and that the project’s scope is kept exactly as you specified. They will also communicate with you about the general development process of the real estate application while performing risk studies to identify potential security flaws.
The normal project management cost ranges from 10 to 15 percent of the overall budget. However, based on the current projection, it may be close to $5,500. Prices for a straightforward and uncomplicated solution typically range from $25,000 to $45,000, withmore advanced real estate apps costing as much as $70,000.
Of course,the project’s complexity and timescale will influence the cost of developing a real estate mobile app.
The features and technologies you want to include in your application, such as augmented reality, chatbots, or push notifications, will all determine how much the app will cost.
The important thing to remember is that the more intricate features you wish to use, the more expensive the development will be. You should also consider whether your app will run on iOS or Android. It is preferable to develop cross-platform apps that are compatible with all major OS if you want to meet the needs of all clients.
Idea Maker’s Experience In Real Estate
Since 2016, Idea Maker has served as a trusted web and software development agency for a variety of industries, including real estate. Our designers and developers created Open House Junky, a fully responsive custom website aimed at bringing real estate agents and homebuyers together under one roof.
Did you enjoy this article and want to move forward and develop a real estate app? Then schedule a call with us now to see what we offer.