People keep asking me how I find, research or seem to know more about a house its surroundings or just in general more that the listing agent. Here is a small insight to some of the Coolest Google Gadgets You Never Knew About for Real Estate Investing.
Let's face it, if you are like most people you spend more than your fair share of time online surfing the Internet or otherwise Tweeting away time. Chances are, you may have missed out on some of the coolest Google gadgets that make great tools for real estate. Spend some time exploring then get ready to save these sites to your favorite lists:
1. Google Maps. Stop driving all over town to see the neighborhood of a potential property. Instead, simply type in the zip code then zoom down to the "street view". Not only can you see the property as well as those of the neighbors, but you can actually take a virtual walk down each road and around the block! Try it at http://maps.google.com/maps?hl=en&tab=wl.
2. My Maps. Create your own customized maps with full GPS navigation/directions that can be sent and received via cell phone. It's the perfect companion to showing homes! http://www.android.com/market/free.html#app=mymapseditor.
3. Google Trends. See what people are searching for then track it over time. Isolate by region or even city then use as a leading indicator for interest in real estate or short sales. Just type in "real estate" or "short sales" to see for yourself how well this little gem works! http://www.google.com/trends?q=short+sales&ctab=0&geo=all&date=all&sort=0.
4. SketchUp. Create, modify and share 3 dimensional models of homes, repairs or even modifications to real estate with Google SketchUp available at http://sketchup.google.com/.
5. Picasa. If you haven't used Google's super simple photo editor and storage service it's time to give it a try. Password protect those areas you want or allow anyone to view pictures of homes and other real estate related investments. Simple and free. http://picasa.google.com/
6. Google Mobile. Get your email, maps, photographs, GPS info, favorite blog or new content plus much more with Google Mobile. http://www.google.com/mobile/#utm_source=us-et-more&utm_medium=et&utm_campaign=mobile.
7. Google Voice. Stop giving out your real phone number - instead, protect your privacy and security with a virtual phone number that reroutes to your phone or other line. Thanks to Google Voice, it's now possible. Currently in Beta, Google Voice is available by invitation only but if you apply, it typically takes approximately 5 to 10 days to receive an invitation. Best of all, number portability plus all the other bells and whistles are included for free!
8. City Tours. Show out of town prospects all the sites from the comfort of their own homes thanks to City Tours. Identify points of interest and plan trips for most major cities. http://citytours.googlelabs.com/
See you at the top!