Guest blog post by Scott Falbo of Front9 Technologies is the developer of ‘iClient for Real Estate Agents.
The iPad has revolutionized the way that many people go about their daily lives – both personally and professionally. In the business world – cases of doctors, teachers, attorneys, and many other professionals using the iPad have been well documented. The real estate profession is no different and real estate agents can realize many of the benefits offered by the iPad.
The iPad comes out of the box with many apps that real estate agents can utilize to work more effectively. With ‘Mail’ you can be in constant contact with your clients and others. ‘Calendar’ will help you manage your busy schedule. ‘Contacts’ will give you a way to store all of your important contact information. ‘Maps’ will give you directions when you’re traveling from one meeting to the next. ‘Safari’ will give you instant access to the Internet no matter where you are (assuming you have an iPad that supports 3G access and you’ve purchased a data plan).
The release of the iPad 2 today, also introduces the ‘FaceTime’ app for the iPad that will let you make face-to-face calls directly from the iPad. This can be a great app for real estate agents. Imagine the power of a showing a client a property from your iPad because their schedule doesn’t allow them travel to the property. The ‘cool factor’ alone will be a great way to wow clients.
Apple has also released their ‘iWork’ suite of applications for the iPad as three separate iPad apps. ‘Keynote’ will give you the ability to create presentations for clients. The ease of use and the great slide transitions in the app will really wow your clients. ‘Numbers’ can be used to create spreadsheets like mortgage calculators that help when discussing costs with your clients. Finally, ‘Pages’ is a very helpful word processing app that can be used to write up documents.
Other app developers have also created apps that can be downloaded and used by real estate agents:
- ‘Dropbox’ is a great app that you can use to sync files between your computer and your iPad for essential file access on the go. ‘Dropbox’ will also allow you to email links to documents rather than emailing very large attachments.
- ‘GoodReader’ is a great app for reading PDFs that also allows you to download PDFs directly from the Internet and into the app. You can markup the PDF if you’d like and easily share it with a client.
- If you’d like to just jot down some quick notes for yourself ‘Penultimate’ is a great app. Using your finger or a stylus you can take some quick notes without using the keyboard.
‘iClient for Real Estate Agents’ is a new app that has been designed to help real estate agents manage their client list from their iPad. With ‘iClient’ you begin by entering basic information about your client. Once your client has been added to the app, you enter information about their transactions. For instance, you enter the date (or anticipated date) of the transaction and whether it is a purchase or a sale. This will allow an agent to keep a historical record of all transactions that a client has made and establish trends over time.
Each transaction provides the ability to add specific information about the transaction: You can enter details about all Properties potentially involved including address, price, MLS number, your client’s feelings regarding the property, and a map (screenshot below). With the release of the iPad 2, ‘iClient’ will be updated to take advantage of the new cameras so that pictures of the property can also be added within the app.
iClient’ also gives you the ability to create a custom Checklist for each transaction. You can easily add all of the tasks that you need to accomplish and easily check them off as they are completed. Since every transaction is different and has unique needs, this feature is fully customizable so you can add any items that you need and reorganize them as you see fit. You can also email this Checklist directly from the app if you need to send it to an associate or if your client is curious about the progress on their transaction.
The Schedule feature will let you add appointments and reminders that can also be synced with any calendar on your iPad so that you can share them with your associates or clients. Does your client absolutely need a two-car garage and two bathrooms in their prospective purchase? Use the Notes page available for each transaction so you can remember these specific details. All of this information can also be protected with the optional password feature. If you set a password in the app, no one else can open the app without putting in the 4-digit combination that you’ve set.
FOREM fans – special offer: If you’d like to try ‘iClient’ you can use any of the codes below for a free copy of the app. Once a code is used though it will no longer be active so these are first come, first servce.
The iPad is becoming more and more ubiquitous in our daily lives and new apps are being released every day. It’s an exciting time to see how this device is changing the way we work and the release of the iPad 2 will bring about the release of even more innovative apps that take advantage of the great features of the device. It will be interesting to see what new apps are released for the real estate professional.
About the author: Scott Falbo of Front9 Technologies is the developer of ‘iClient for Real Estate Agents’ and other apps for professionals including ‘iJuror’ and ‘iClient for Attorneys’. You can follow Scott on Twitter @front9tech.