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14-01-2009

Website gives details of all properties for house hunters

NZHERALD

A property-searching website to start operating tomorrow aims to become the first stop for house-hunters.

Zoodle will give information on more than 1.5 million homes and 1600 suburbs and communities.

Alistair Helm of realestate.co.nz said yesterday the site had the potential to boost the slumping property market by restoring buyers' confidence.

"It is designed to allow the buying public to really get to the heart of the property market," he said.

Zoodle combines up-to-date market information from realestate.co.nz with land and property data from Terralink International.

This includes the latest property valuations, market trends, legal descriptions and links to listings.

Last year "uncertainty" was the overriding word used to describe the property market, Mr Helm said.

"This year could end up being exactly the same but for the ability to make people more confident."

Most house-hunters now ask their real estate agent to give market and land information.

Zoodle will enable house-hunters to become "armchair experts" in the property market and this may speed up the transaction process.

Mr Helm said he looked forward to the day when people would be talking about "zoodling" properties.

Every residential property with a legal title is on the site.

It uses imagery from Google's recently launched Street View, which has photographed most streets in the country.

This would enable browsers to take a virtual, street-level tour of a neighbourhood.

Mr Helm said property information was previously scattered across websites and authorities.

Zoodle stitches together figures from Statistics New Zealand, Quotable Value, the Real Estate Institute and the Department of Building and Housing.

The site will encourage users to submit their own content such as suburb profiles written by people who live there.

It is closely modelled on property websites in the United States, Britain and Australia.

 

 

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