Monday, November 2, 2015

Cloud Technology in Real Estate

                 The way people search for and purchase the homes they look to live in has changed due to the advance of modern technology.  You used to have to walk into a real estate office and work with a real estate agent to get information on the homes available in the market you are trying to purchase in.  Now, there are sites available such as Zillow and Trulia that attract consumers to visiting the internet in their pursuit of a home.  These types of companies utilize cloud technology to better their service and further their success in providing readily available information for those looking to purchase a home.

                  People are doing a lot more of their own, independent research on the housing market and the statistics prove it.  “According to 2014 data from the National Association of Realtors, 43 percent of homebuyers start their search online, and 92 percent of buyers turn to the Internet at some point during the process” [1].  This change is because of sites like Zillow and Trulia’s abilities to provide consumers with online listings, photos, prices, and neighborhood comparisons.  Yet, the information they provide takes up massive amounts of data for real estate markets all over the country.  So how do they store all of this data?

                  To store such vast amounts of data on traditional hardware, it would cost upwards of millions of dollars.  That is why a company like Zillow “moved all of its Zestimates to the cloud in order to accommodate the increased computing demands of recalculating 15 years’ worth of home-value data for the entire country” [1].  Additionally, they later decided to move their inventory of home-photos to the cloud as well.  The savings in costs are very significant and the cloud allows for high amounts of storage for data at a much cheaper cost than using traditional hardware.

                  Cloud technology not only cuts costs of storage for companies, but benefits consumers as well.  Viewing photos of homes, for example, becomes faster and easier for people viewing these sites whether they are on their desktop or their mobile device.  There is a noticeable difference in lag time.  Zillow’s latest move this year was “even [purchasing] cloud-based startup dotloop to enable homebuyers to view, revise, sign and send real estate documents online” [1].  So, cloud technology is becoming a benefit on multiple fronts.  It makes storage cheaper, data availability faster and easier, and has increased the success of online real estate market activity for both buyers and sellers.  I believe utilizing the cloud will only become more and more popular in this industry. 

1 comment:

  1. It's interesting to think about this aspect of the real estate industry. Real estate is a field that actually requires a lot of data processing and storage, so I'm not surprised Zillow made this upgrade to cloud technology. Furthermore, with the unpredictability of the housing market in the twenty-first century, it makes sense as far as service costs to use only what you pay for. With cloud computing, Zillow does not have to hire employees, security, or buy technology for a server warehouse. Both Zillow and its conversion to cloud technology show how the progression of technology is making previously tedious and expensive tasks, faster and cheaper. Broader access to real estate data is helping everyday consumers make a choice will more information and analytics than ever before. As an article from explains, the vast data bank involved with real estate has allowed analysts to understand the behavior and circumstances of the community a home is in. Furthermore, the data helps banks make highly informed decision on whether or not they should foreclose or initiate a short sale.

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