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My 10 Favorite Free iPhone Apps for My Real Estate Business (Right Now)

Blog Contributor Technology & Social Media, Uncategorized 18 Comments

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Maura Neill

Maura Neill

By Maura Neill

I am an iPhone devotee. I suffered through years of Palm Treo and various Blackberries (a Curve and two Bolds) to land, finally, in the land of the iPhone. And I couldn’t love it more. The usability and variety of the apps available for work and for play are a big part of that.

It’s the device that seems to have an app for everything (except, as the joke goes, for actually making a phone call) – and below is a list of my 10 favorite apps for my real estate business (for now – since of course, they’re always changing and new ones pop up every day). There are tons of blog articles and Web sites devoted to iPhone apps every real estate practitioner must have – this is not one of those lists. These are just a few of my faves. Maybe there will be a few on this list that are new to you – and I hope you’ll post a comment, send me an e-mail or connect with me on Twitter and share your favorite apps for your business.

And yes, I’m a cheapskate – all of these apps are FREE.

1, 2, 3. Facebook / Tweetdeck / LinkedIn – My social networking triumvirate. They allow you to respond immediately to Twitter @Mentions and DMs, Facebook messages and comments, and LinkedIn connection requests. (Another great Twitter app is Hootsuite, which I like on my laptop, but not as much on my iPhone – just personal preference. The Hootsuite app is only $1.99.)

 

4. Dropbox – Allows you to access files that are on your home or office computer that you have placed in your Dropbox files. Easy access to contracts, fliers, photos, and any other pertinent files while away from my office. Need to e-mail your client that property disclosure or send the closing attorney that commission agreement? Done! The only thing you need to remember is to move those files into your Dropbox on your computer so that they can sync and be accessed. (Free for 2GB storage; fees apply for larger storage/sharing options.)

 

5. Trulia Real Estate Search – This fantastic app makes immediate searching for homes for sale and open houses possible, complete with description, list price, date of last price reduction (when applicable/available), driving directions, agent phone number and e-mail (when included), etc. When you have a client in your car and they ask, “What about that house?” you can pull it up and tell them about it (if it’s still an active listing). There’s even a custom search option. I’ve found very few instances in which the information is incorrect or not updated (although, on occasion, it does happen).

 

6. Slydial – I just learned about this app at a technology conference. Slydial gives you a way to call a client’s cell phone voicemail directly and leave a message. They’ll never hear the phone ring and you won’t get roped into a long conversation. It’s a great way to touch base with someone on your own terms/timetable and get through your calls quickly if you’re on a tight schedule. (The app is free – the service is not, so read about the fees before you use it!)

 

7. Bump – Great for networking events and conventions/conferences. Allows you to trade contact information with others with a “fist bump”… as long as they also have an iPhone. It’s more of a fun app, but saves time – you won’t have to collect gather as many business cards or worry about losing them.

8. QR app – We recently began using QR codes to advertise our listings and any Smartphone user with a QR reader app can scan them and save them to store the information for later. This app reads QR codes, these amazing little barcodes that you can create for free using a QR code Web site. Want to read more about QR codes? Click here: www.tinyurl.com/mauraneill-qrcodes

 

9. Urbanspoon – Great app for personal and business use. I love to try new restaurants and I really enjoy discovering a place that’s off the beaten path – this app is great for that. But even better, it can help you find places to eat for clients who have dietary restrictions or are just plain picky. Vegetarian? Kosher? Organic? Not a problem. This app can help you find the right place to take your clients, even if you didn’t know it existed. Plus you can easily rate restaurants (like or didn’t like), read and write reviews and post them to your Twitter feed, and let others know of your experience – good or bad!

 

10. Talking Carl – Thanks to my friend, Brian Copeland (@NashvilleBrian), for introducing me to this little red, bulging-eyed monster who repeats everything you say in an adorable, slightly crazed voice. Had a bad day? Talk to Carl and he’ll put a smile on your face… because sometimes in this business, you just need a good laugh!

Maura Neill, CRS, is a real estate practitioner in Atlanta. You can follow Maura on Twitter: @MauraNeill

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Comments 18

  1. That is TOO funny that you put Talking Carl on your list. I forgot about showing you that! Seriously, we still laugh our heads off every time we play with it. I never thought about adding it as an RE app for the stress relief, but now that you say it…makes perfect sense. Go Talking Carl!!!!!!!!!

  2. Following on what Toby said, Sprint also allows you to access your voice-mail, record a message, and send it to another Sprint phone. It only works when sending from one Sprint phone to another though, and I do not know if the same applies to Verizon.

  3. In regards to the Bump app. It is awesome. This is a nifty app to record contacts while networking
    great post Maura, Yoyu may also want to post it on WCR’s message boards.

  4. I also like Property Evaluator for running numbers on investment properties.
    Active Rain for Real Estate Blog.
    Cheap Gas
    Around me- locate store or business near your location
    And for golfers- iSwing swing analyzer and Golfshot GPS (cheap compared to other handhelds)

  5. An app not to talk to clients? When you client fires you, I’ ll call them and speak to them as a human and list the house.

    If you don’t have time to TALK, don’t call.

  6. Brad,
    Get a grip..has there never been an instance when you might be out with a client and needed to make a quick call but didn’t want to get tied up on a hour conversation…

  7. My wife, Carly, just went to the App store and bought Talking Carl and our 3 year old loves him. It is one of the funniest apps that we have found. He is hysterical.

    I hope that it makes you laugh and makes your day.

    Be blessed,

    Colin

  8. Another one while out on the go that I have found very useful is both yelp as well as iWant both tell you how close the nearest Starbucks, Walgreens etc. is. Very helpful when you are in unknown territory.

  9. To all who commented: Thanks so much! I appreciate all your input!

    Specifically to Brad: I echo Benita’s comment, “has there never been an instance when you might be out with a client and needed to make a quick call but didn’t want to get tied up on a hour conversation?” Nine times out of ten, I would never avoid talking to a client, but every once in awhile there are instances where I need to relay a quick bit of information or even say “Happy Birthday” but cannot get into a long conversation. I appreciate your sentiments, but there are times when we ALL could use this app. Thank you for your comment, though, and thanks for reading!

  10. Maura,
    You should checkout ThankYouPro, a free app that lets you create and send a real thank you card in about a minute. It is highly personalized with your very own signature (right on the phone), handwriting fonts and photo card covers. It is printed and mailed next day – the perfect thank you and follow up for buyers and prospects.

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