Tags: Real | estate | big | data

WSJ's Chen: Real Estate Agents Turn to Big Data to Find Home Buyers, Sellers

By    |   Tuesday, 19 May 2015 10:00 AM

The big data craze might have started in the technology industry, but now it's branching out elsewhere, including the real estate sector.

Big data represents information about consumers available through their use of the Internet. Companies parse through that data and apply it to sell goods and services.

"To target prospective clients in competitive markets, tech-savvy [real estate] agents are buying data subscriptions and teaming up with firms that identify potential buyers using increasingly precise metrics," writes Stefanos Chen of The Wall Street Journal.

"Exotic car owners can be courted to buy a car-collector's mansion. Equestrians are rounded up for ranch homes"

Sotheby's International Realty began a partnership last year with Wealth-X, a consulting group that follows the spending habits of the 211,000 people worldwide with a net worth of more than $30 million.

Wealth-X aims to create a thorough profile of each one of these ultra-high net worth individuals, David Friedman, the company's president, tells The Journal.

Meanwhile, you've probably read all about Americans dropping the idea of homeownership in favor of renting. The U.S. homeownership rate now stands at just 64 percent, the lowest since 1989.

But it's not just happening here in the United States. "Home ownership is falling right around the world," writes Matthew Lynn of The Telegraph. "It is down dramatically in . . . Australia, in Ireland and in many other countries as well."

So what gives?

"There is a global shift away from home ownership that may have as much to do with changing demographics, work and migration patterns, and global interest rates," Lynn explains.

"And the lesson from that is we should try to intervene as little as possible in the housing market, and let consumers decide the right balance between owning and renting."

Home prices might be headed lower in developed countries, as they are entering a long period of falling population, Lynn says.

As for the United States, our drop in homeownership isn't a cause for consternation, says Yahoo Finance columnist Rick Newman.

"What's really going on is the last bit of air squeaking out of a 20-year housing bubble that obscured the pitfalls of owning a home, while exaggerating the virtues," he writes.

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The big data craze might have started in the technology industry, but now it's branching out elsewhere, including the real estate sector.
Real, estate, big, data
Tuesday, 19 May 2015 10:00 AM
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