WINNER: Outstanding Property Search Feature
Houston Association of Realtors®
No Realtor® wants to direct his or her clients to an online property search that will confuse and frustrate. That's why the ease of use of the Houston Association of Realtors®' property search stands out.
"Navigation couldn't get much easier," noted one judge. "It was easy to find all the information, and you can save the property in your shopping cart and continue to search through the site. ‘Home' is clearly visible at the top of every page."
"The site is professional looking, the colors are soft and not flashy, and, best of all, it is not consumed with advertising," another judge reflected.
Marrying ease of use with depth of functionality isn't easy, but this site achieves this critical balance with a multitude of features. "[Visitors] can customize their searches, contact the agent by e-mail, broker by phone, or the site administrator for feedback. They can save their searches in the shopping cart and return later or compare the properties," one judge noted.
The HAR.com property search integrates Microsoft Virtual Earth, which provides detailed, high-resolution satellite-image mapping-available with aerial, bird's eye, and 3-D options-so that visitors can examine fine details of most properties and the surrounding area from multiple angles and distances. It also enables property searches based on proximity to schools, hospitals, and police and fire stations, as well as businesses, such as supermarkets, restaurants, and banks. Traditional property option searches are also available with the use of drop-down menus.
An additional feature allows visitors to highlight a particular section of a map, called a polygon, if they have a specific neighborhood, subdivision, or area of town in mind. Properties that meet the criteria will be displayed with colored "pushpins" that reveal detailed information, including enlargeable photos.
"I personally liked the ‘make a flyer' button," one judge said, "because that feature would allow me to print a one-page hard copy that I could refer to without having to go online to view the listing data."
"The new search engine includes a listing of foreclosed properties, a feature that has grown in interest among prospective homebuyers in the wake of the subprime mortgage crisis," says Houston CEO Bob Hale. "HAR.com also displays detailed tax information for every property in the greater Houston and surrounding area."
Accommodating the tremendously diverse ethnic population in Houston, text within the site is available in multiple languages, including Spanish, Chinese, Vietnamese, French, German, and Italian.
"This is an excellent way to help the members make money-providing the public the avenue to search the members' listings and contact the members directly through the association's public MLS," a judge said.
For more information, I invite you to visit http://www.texasrealestate.com/ or http://www.har.com/ and for all of your Pearland TX and Northern Brazoria and Galveston County real estate needs, please visit my site at http://www.danfrankrealty.com/. Danny Frank is a local Pearland Real Estate expert.