Six companies will compete this year for the Inman Innovator Award in the online real estate publishing category. The 2004 finalists are Boston.com, MarketWatch.com, BuilderOnline, RealEstateJournal.com, ChicagoTribune.com and New York Times Online.
Boston.com is the digital arm of The Boston Globe. The newspaper recently launched its new online real estate section, which encompasses listings and information about metropolitan Boston, suburban areas and popular vacation spots throughout New England. The new site offers more comprehensive home searches and consumer-targeted features, plus more advertising opportunities for realty brokers and agents in the region. Agents can track how many times their listings are searched by consumers on Boston.com, and track each time someone clicks into their Web site from the newspaper.
CBS MarketWatch’s online real estate section includes extensive news coverage of real estate and housing and mortgage market conditions. The site also features tools for consumers such as a real estate library and stories with tips on home buying and selling, home improvement, renting, and mortgages and other home loans.
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BuilderOnline is a resource for home-building professionals. The Web site includes industry news and information, access to Builder and Big Builder magazine content, a message board, building product guide, a yellow pages of services, software and books for builders, and an online database of thousands of house plans.
RealEstateJournal.com is The Wall St. Journal’s online real estate news and information site. The site includes news coverage of residential and commercial real estate, a link to Realtor.com’s database of homes for sale, a database of distinctive properties sites, city profiles, a home improvement section, buying and selling section and a home and garden section, among other features. Site visitors also can use a mortgage calculator, demographic maps and home price check tool.
The real estate section in Chicago Tribune’s online edition includes for-sale home and open house listings from home builders, regional MLS services and Tribune classifieds. The site also links to a find-a-real-estate-agent service, a mortgage center and several apartment-hunting and new-home search features. Site visitors can look up recent sale values by entering community name, sale date and price range.
New York Times Online
The New York Times in June launched a newly redesigned and enlarged real estate section with expanded residential coverage, practical columns for buyers and sellers and additional bold color pages. NYTimes.com enhanced its existing real estate section by adding multimedia to select columns, improving search functionality and offering community comparison tools and reader forums. The site includes information for home buying, home renting, home owning, mortgages, luxury and vacation real estate and commercial real estate.
The most innovative real estate and mortgage industry companies will be honored at Real Estate Connect, July 28-30 in San Francisco. Real Estate Connect brings together the top leaders from the real estate industry, including mortgage lenders, technology firms, industry analysts and news media.
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