“What we’ve done is communicated with our network to agents whose towns did well in Hooptown Bracketology to use press outreach and get people excited about their town as well as the tournament.”

Coldwell Banker is proving that agents can have some fun with all that real estate data brokerages like to compile every day.

As part of its March Madness-related Hoops campaign, Coldwell Banker has used real estate data from its proprietary home pricing platform CBx to choose five different “Hooptown” brackets comparing real estate data from each school’s hometown and pick winners for each game in the March Madness Men’s College Basketball tournament. The Realogy franchisor is calling it “Hooptown Bracketology.”

Five different teams out of the 68 were selected as the brokerage’s picks in their respective brackets based on the team’s “Hooptown” ranking in the categories of Most Expensive, Most Affordable, Easiest to Move to, Newest (based on age of homes), and Best for Singles.

The team in the most expensive Hooptown — the Long Island University of Brooklyn Blackbirds from New York, where the average sales price is a lofty $1.2 million based on 2017 annual data — has sadly already fallen out of the tournament.

The most affordable Hooptown, according to Coldwell Banker’s CBx data, is still in the game: the University of Oklahoma Sooners is based in Norman, Oklahoma, a town that is extraordinarily affordable, with an average sales price in 2017 of just $55,000, according to Coldwell Banker senior vice president of marketing, David Marine, speaking to Inman.

Screen shot of Coldwell Banker’s “Hooptown Bracketology”

The team “just squeaked into” the tournament with the help of a very talented freshman, Trae Young, but it will face some challenging games ahead, including one against Duke University’s Blue Devils, said Marine.

Duke University in Durham, North Carolina, interestingly made it into the newest Hooptown category. It had the most new homes of all the basketball towns around the country — the average year houses were built in Durham was as recent as 2011. It is not an easy place to buy, however, with under 600 listings right now, said Marine.

The easiest Hooptown to move to, by contrast, is the home of the Ramblers from Loyola University Chicago, the team Marine correctly predicted to be the first upset win as the tournament started in earnest Thursday.

Chicago currently has over 11,926 listings, which makes it “super easy “to move to, said Marine. The neighborhoods immediately surrounding Loyola University are Edgewater, Rogers Park and Water Tower.

Meanwhile, CBx data found that the best Hooptown for Singles was the popular college town of Ann Arbor, where the University of Michigan Wolverines are based. Marine said CBx can look at the different demographics and put together a profile of the typical homebuyer and homeseller. The town has about “99 percent” more singles than families in the population just because it’s so dominated by students, said the SVP.  It also has an average sales price of $205,000, making it affordable for singles.

Coldwell Banker agents around the country were being encouraged to use the Hooptown Bracketology initiative, which was also being included in the Hoops marketing ad on TV and across the web during the tournament, said Marine. A local brokerage in Durham — Coldwell Banker Howard, Perry and Walston — is using the campaign in their marketing, he said.

“What we’ve done is communicated with our network to agents whose towns did well in Hooptown Bracketology to use press outreach and get people excited about their town as well as the tournament,” said Marine.

College towns are great places to live with lots of amenities, he added. “This is a perfect opportunity to shine a light on these towns and use the data Coldwell Banker has to buy or sell in a market,” Marine added.

How likely is it that the Hooptown Bracketology picks will win the day? Unlikely, said Marine, personally a fan of the University of Arizona Wildcats.

The University of Virginia Cavaliers are the no. 1 team of the tournament, he said, but he reckons the Villanova Wildcats, from Bryn Mawr, outside of Philadelphia, has an excellent team with three players likely to go into the NBA lottery this year.

Email Gill South.

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