Guide on How to Build a Successful Real Estate App from Scratch

real estate mobile app development

October 27, 2021

Reading time about 7 minutes

With an increasing number of smartphone users, apps are becoming the most convenient marketing channel for every business including Real Estate. Having an online presence of your real estate business is essential to bring together buyers and sellers in one platform. Research states more than 90% of people search for homes online.

As customers have infinite options while looking for a way to buy, rent or sell a property, there is a growing demand for such real estate apps making the competition very high. However, the development of a real estate app from scratch requires thorough planning and analysis. Let’s find out everything you need to know about real estate mobile app development and tips that must be considered to make your app a grand success.

Rules to Make Your Real Estate Stand Out From the Crowd

Every business is different from one another, so as their targeted customers. Building the right app that resonates with your specific business goals is what you need to stand out from the competition. Here are some of the most effective tips that can help you while building a real estate app for your business-

1. Analyze Competitors

The only way to stand out is to find what competitors are doing, what are their weaknesses and strengths. Learning from competitors helps to analyze the features that must be incorporated in your real estate app to outperform them. Listed below are some of the common characteristics for the real estate market leaders –

  • Act as a touchpoint for all parties i.e. easy search for property options, advertise to attract new users, help homeowners to find tenants, and many more.
  • The app must simplify the whole process of home buying and renting experience enabling users to complete all tasks in one place.
  • Robust marketing tools with advanced search options for property listings helping buyers & sellers to close the deal in a short time.
  • Focus on application models you want to select whether it’s an agency-based for a particular real estate agency or a third-party app that unites clients, realtors, tenants & others.

2. Focus on Customer Needs

Your top priority should be your customers ‘needs! To make your real estate app a success, it is important to define the categories of app users and meet their needs effectively. Three categories comprise home buyers/tenants, real estate agencies/realtors, and home sellers/landlords. Every user category has different needs and your app must fulfill all their expectations.

  • Property Buyers or tenants must be able to find the property for sale in their preferred location with every single detail and directly contact the seller or agent.
  • Another user type i.e. realtors or agents must demonstrate their property propositions, communicate with clients & analyze the results.
  • Property sellers & landlords must be able to post property propositions or find real estate agents to help with property selling/renting.

Customers want app features such as easy filtering & navigation, in-app consultations, analytics & more to take care of every customer’s specific needs & challenges.

3. Create a Strong Database

Having a proper database of your real estate business is essential to make your app a success. Some of the ways to obtain the data for the database are-

  • Connect to Multiple Listing Services (MLS)

Multiple Listing Services include data about the properties such as an address, photos, floor plans, etc. that is maintained by brokers and realtors. MLS enables real estate solutions to use the data for their property listings. Renowned apps like Trulia & Zillow have access to local MLS by signing up the agreements.

  • Partner with Listing Platform

As there are multiple MLSs across the United States, it can be hard to negotiate an agreement with each of them. An alternative way is to have an agreement with large listings syndication platforms such as ListHub.

  • Data from other real estate apps

The third option is to take data from real estate apps like Trulia, Realtor, etc. It is important to ensure that you read and understand the terms and conditions properly of every real estate company you will be taking data from.

  • Work with a Data Company

Another thing you can do is to partner with a data company to buy the base. Some Real Estate information companies like CoreLogic that license the largest databases for property ownership, buyer information, etc. aggregate property data and resell it.

4. App Monetization Strategy

Having a proper monetization plan is essential to make your real estate app a success. As no solution fits all, your company needs to figure out how you can create your strategy for building a revenue model. Some of the best ways for app monetization are-

  • Advertising

This is one of the best monetization approaches where you can go for relevant advertisements such as mortgage ads, loan ads, property insurance ads & more.

  • Additional Charges

This option is for those who will charge an additional fee for sellers who wish to get their property listed and for agents who want to boost their profiles.

  • Subscriptions

Another option is premium membership or subscription-based model where app users need to pay extra for extra benefits like detailed customer behavior reports, analysis tools to study the latest market trends, etc.

  • Commissions

This option enables your app to charge a certain percentage of every financial transaction. Your app can act as an intermediary during rental transactions to gain profit from the commissions.

5. Set of Features

Your real estate app should incorporate robust features to help users complete the task in one go. Here are some of the best features-

  • Advanced Property Search

Your app should enable users to search properties based on different criteria such as location filter, type of property, price range, etc.

  • Geo-location & Maps

Having GPS support is the must-have feature if you want users to get the full information about the neighborhood of the property.

  • Property Shortlisting

Your potential home buyers must be able to shortlist properties they want through your app. This will make the decision-making process easier thereby boosting sales.

  • Communication

Another option is to include communication forms in your app enabling users to connect with property sellers & get their queries answered.

  • User Profiles

As your app needs to address three types of users- sellers, buyers & agents, make sure that it has an option to create user profiles as per their roles.

6. Hire Right App Developers

Apart from all the tips stated above, it is important to hire the expert developers of the leading real estate app development company who can provide a rough estimate of your project after understanding your development needs. With growing uncertainty in the business environment, it is important to start small before starting the full-fledged development of your app.

An agile approach is the best way to build the app using MVP that includes only the basic set of features to serve as the initial version of the app. Choose app developers that follow the agile methodology as it helps in improving the product continually with changes based on customers’ feedback.

Final Verdict

Undoubtedly, the pandemic has led to the increasing adoption of technology in the real estate industry. That is why it is important to enter the market as soon as possible with the fresh real estate app. Ensure that you consider the guide in the above section to embrace the power of a robust real estate app and unlock more business opportunities.

Thinking to discuss your real estate app idea, get in touch with our expert real estate app developers having strong expertise in the latest development technologies and best practices.

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