Apple iPad real estate apps could save homebuyers and agents time

No doubt Apple’s iPad, which hits stores Saturday (April 3), will be a cool gadget to have around the house. But the wireless tablet could also help you buy a house.

Already, at least two real estate apps for iPhones will be available in iPad versions when the tablet launches. The iPad’s bigger screen size (9.7 inches) is likely to make these iPhone apps even more useful for house hunters and real estate agents alike.

Zillow on an iPad

To get a taste for what the free Zillow iPad app will look like, pop over to and take a look at their iPad video. The ability to view large neighborhood maps and photos, look at listings side by side, flick through thumbnail images–honestly, if I hadn’t already ordered an iPad, this video alone would have done the trick.

I can imagine using Zillow on the iPad to quickly sort through open house listings while I’m at a client’s home, or while we’re out on tour. I’ve tried doing this on my BlackBerry, but a smartphone’s screen just isn’t cut out for sharing photos with other people. And while I own a laptop, it’s heavy and expensive. I don’t want to lug it around all the time and worry about recharging it.

Since the iPad screen is so much bigger than my BlackBerry’s, I’ll be able to pull up photos on the fly to show clients, wherever we are. The iPad weighs just 1.5 pounds, a lot less than my laptop. And early reviews from The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal have both noted that the iPad’s battery lasts even longer than the 10 hours Apple says it’s good for.

Bottom line: Because the process of finding a home can be so time consuming, Zillow on the iPad is bound to save both me and my clients time.

Other iPad real estate apps

ZipRealty has also announced an iPad version of its iPhone app. The app will let you see listing prices, property information (such as number of bedrooms), square footage, and home value estimates. The ZipRealty app is also free and should be worth downloading as well.

I’m sure it’s just a matter of time before additional real estate apps will become available on the iPad. So don’t be surprised if you start seeing people at open houses—including me—carrying one of these tablets

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