QR codes come to real estate listings

Property Cloud Inc. is selling an app to real estate agents that will generate an individual Web listing for each property they are selling.


You can already use your smartphone to buy coffee so why not use it to shop for a home?
Vancouver startup Property Cloud Inc. has just unveiled its eponymous mobile service giving realtors the ability to create and send out home sale listings via QR codes to potential buyers’ smartphones. 

The service has been beta tested by about 100 realtors across Canada since late August and is now openly available to professional real estate agents who contact Property Cloud Inc. through its Web site. 

The company is calling it a mobile service rather than an app because it “generates individual mobile Web sites for property listings,” says Property Cloud’s managing partner Ross Chandler. 

“An app is something we’re looking at in the next beta stage and we’re in the process (of developing one),” Chandler says. 

The service creates a QR code for each home an agent is trying to sell. The agent can then print the QR code on marketing materials and even the home’s ‘for sale’ sign, as well as post it on their own Web site, Twitter and Facebook. When a potential buyer scans the code with a smartphone, an individual Web site comes up on the phone’s browser with listing details, photos, videos, GPS coordinates, and agent contact information. 

Though many agents are already putting QR codes on brochures and lawn signs, Property Cloud’s service drives traffic to more specific content in a format that’s designed especially for smartphones, Chandler says. 

“You find people scanning QR codes on real estate signs and it goes to a regular (brokerage) Web site, which is a nightmare to navigate on a small screen.”

The real estate industry and its service suppliers are already embracing mobile apps. CIBC unveiled its Home Advisor app in January for iPhone, iPod Touch and BlackBerry. Users can access information such as sales trends and average home prices in certain neighbourhoods, share property listings through social media, email or texts, access four different mortgage and down payment calculators, and request mortgage pre-approval. 

Although Property Cloud is just one more entrant in the mobile realty services space, Chandler says its leg up on the competition is that it allows realtors to create, edit, delete and distribute separate Web pages for individual homes from any location on their smartphones. This means agents don’t have to keep going back onto their own brokerage Web sites or the Multiple Listing Service (MLS) to modify and manage property listings each time, he says.


By: Christine Wong

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