Yahoo! Real Estate launched a revamped site today that the company says will make it easier for users to find properties, loans and real estate professionals specific to their locale.
The new site offers more ways to find information that was already available at Yahoo! Real Estate, but the company did not announce any new partnerships or plans to expand the portal’s offerings.
Through partners like Prudential, Zillow, Bankrate and Homegain, Yahoo! Real Estate has already been offering more than 3 million property listings, maps and satellite imagery, home valuations, mortgage tools and referrals to local real estate professionals. The site has also served as an access point for local information, including school evaluations, through links to Yahoo! Local.
What’s new is a more sophisticated use of maps, allowing users to see the location of schools, parks and restaurants, and call up information posted on Yahoo! Local.
Integration with Yahoo! Search will also allow users to create shortcuts to find listings and mortgage rates in their area, and view listing of homes they spot driving down the street by entering “Pru ID” numbers displayed on yard signs.
“The key here is we’re offering users the ability to learn about the offline community they are considering, by seeing what the online community is saying about it,” said Michael Yang, senior director of business development for Yahoo! search and marketplace.
The shortcuts and other new features of the site help “push” data to users, Yang said, instead of making them dig for it. Hot trends in real estate will also be featured in a homepage “pulse.”
The new site offers more opportunities for local real estate agents to advertise to consumers, Yang said, because they will be able to buy ads targeting users who have personalized the site to their location.
“By incorporating maps, locality and ad units, we’re trying to localize the experience for users, as well as other constituents,” Yang said.