New Developments in Home Search Apps

Beta-testing Underway for AI-powered Digital Virtual Assistant

Ylopo, a digital marketing platform for real estate, is beta-testing an AI-powered app–RAIYA, which stands for Real Estate Artificial Intelligence: Your Assistant. More than 300 Ylopo customers are trying RAIYA, a virtual assistant that employs big data to communicate with home shoppers via text and works as an automated follow-up for realtors. RAIYA will be available to everyone beginning July 1.

“The thing that makes our AI unique in the real estate space is that it’s driven by all the data we’re collecting on each user as they search for homes to buy on the search sites we provide for them. This way we can have informed conversations based on what we know the home shopper is interested in, which makes the conversations very precise and genuine,” said Juefeng Ge, Co-founder, Chief Marketing Officer, Ylopo, LLC.

RAIYA feels human through its use of natural language processing (NLP) to empathize, communicate and politely converse with a wide range of home shoppers. The company’s unconstrained conversational AI was built using NLP, machine learning and dialogue management to deliver an unprecedented conversational experience.

“At Ylopo, we pride ourselves on being the most rapidly innovating company in the real estate tech space, but our newest product release is a major breakthrough in the application of artificial intelligence to online real estate lead conversion,” said Ylopo CEO Howard Tager. “We have combined the power of artificial intelligence with our 24/7 monitoring of home shopper search behavior to create a system that automatically communicates with that home shopper, answers their questions, and provides them with relevant, on-point property and market information.”

During beta testing, more than 10,000 conversations are already happening via text daily with 50% of home shoppers engaging in the first 30 days and 30% of them are getting qualified by RAIYA.

“The power of Ylopo’s AI cannot be overstated. We are seeing a tremendous increase in engagement from home shoppers,” said Dawn Cordiner, Managing Broker, Soldera Properties in Lake Oswego, Oregon. “I’m amazed at how authentic the conversations are,” she added.

Neighborhoods.com Rolls Out App for Homebuyers

A new mobile application from Neighborhoods.com promises to take the stress out of homeshopping. Designed with homebuyers in mind, the app offers easy-to-use map navigation, allowing users to explore neighborhoods and discover what’s in the area, browse homes for sale and view home details, save favorites, and connect with local real estate experts.

Neighborhoods.com, which currently serves markets in 17 states and continues to grow, provides homebuyers with comprehensive neighborhood coverage and real-time MLS listings in nearly 200,000 neighborhoods across dozens of the most sought-after metropolitan areas across the country. Its mobile app—which requires software version 11.0 or later and is compatible with iPhone—offers the same accurate information for visitors on the go.

Mobile house hunters can search and compare homes for sale with the interactive and easy-to-use map, while learning about the area through neighborhood profiles containing original photos and descriptions, independent resident reviews, and school information. There’s also an option to create an account, allowing users to save neighborhoods and homes, and receive alerts when new listings appear.

“There are many ways to find a home; plenty of digital tools out there, too, and today’s fast-paced world makes it easier than ever to shop for a home online,” said Bill Ness, CEO and founder of Neighborhoods.com. “The Neighborhoods.com mobile app provides extensive information about homes and the area surrounding the property—including a neighborhood overview, top schools, trends, and resident reviews—which helps buyers ensure the home they’re fond of is in a neighborhood they’ll enjoy.”

Most real estate agents know that the neighborhood is an important part of the home search. In a recent survey, Neighborhoods.com found 62 percent of first-time homebuyers ranked accessible amenities as the most important factor when considering a new neighborhood. Property value followed at 46 percent, and school districts and walkability were close behind at 38 percent.

“The neighborhood is bigger than a home—literally and figuratively,” added Ness. “This app is empowering users to take control of their homebuying search. Plus, when a home of interest is discovered, it’s easy to connect to a trusted partner real estate agent with just a touch of a button.”

The app is available from the Apple App Store.

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After earning her bachelor’s degree in journalism at the University of Central Florida, Tracey set out in the real world at Florida Realtors in 1994 as a communication assistant, working her way up to editor in chief of Florida Realtor magazine. In 2004, she left the association to start her freelance writing and editing business. One of her first clients was REAL Trends, and she started working for the organization in 2005. In 2014, Tracey was promoted to editor in chief of publications for REAL Trends. She handles the writing and editing of all REAL Trends publications and marketing materials, including LORE Magazine, the REAL Trends newsletter and the blog. She is also the primary podcast interviewer where she conducts interviews with top real estate industry leaders and affiliated industry leaders. Tracey is married with two children.

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