Real estate games: Serious business?

Open-house contest driven by mobile gaming platform

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Shopping for homes can be recreational.

A lot of organizing by party-planners, a little spontaneity on the part of shoppers, and games to inspire good-old-fashioned mingling may be a win-win-win combination for real estate.

That’s what CEO Tim Fagan found when his online listing service teamed with an Atlanta brokerage and local businesses to create a competition for a $20,000 downpayment.

The Sept. 25 "Race for the Home" event, planned and executed by gaming platform SCVNGR, essentially converted 50 open houses into a virtual game board. Competitors downloaded challenges at each location.