Thursday
October 30, 2014

2012 Mobile Apps: Recommended for Real Estate

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2012 Mobile Apps: Recommended for Real Estate

Need to be more productive in the field? Here are some apps that can help you be an effective real estate pro, no matter where you are.

Free Apps

Many free apps, such as the examples included here, can equip a smartphone or tablet with useful functionality. In some cases, the free product is a “lite” version with limited features as a way of letting users pre-test the app before purchasing the fully loaded app.

CamScanner/CamCard

INTSIG Information Co.

Free versions of each for iOS and Android

CamScan converts the phone’s camera into a portable scanner for copying documents, notes, and receipts. Once scanned, the information can be saved as a PDF and easily shared or saved in the cloud. CamCard reads the information on a business card and saves it as a contact record that can be stored in the phone’s address book or Gmail contact list, or be made available to other apps.

DropBox

DropBox

Free app for iPhone, Android, and Blackberry devices

With this popular cloud service, users can save files in the cloud and retrieve them on any of their devices, wherever an Internet connection is available. The mobile apps extend all the features of the service to smartphones and tablets so users can share, save, edit, or retrieve documents, photos, videos, or other files. Basic free services includes 2 gigabytes of storage; upgrades are available.

HomeSnap

SawBuck Realty

Free (available for iOS devices; Android version under development)

This app takes retrieving property information in the field in a new direction. Where the service is available, users snap a picture of a home for sale with their tablet or smartphone. The service matches the image and GPS location to display real-time data from the local MLS and other sources on price, size, features, and pictures with information when it last sold. Once a home has been snapped, the server tracks and updates information on any price changes.

Mortgage Calculator

Adonis Apps

Free for Android

An example of the free, basic mortgage and loan calculator apps, this can be used to calculate monthly mortgage payments and amortization. It includes PMI and other monthly expenses and a debt-to-income ratio calculator. A more robust real estate Pro version is available for $0.99.

Open House Manager

WahSoft LLC

Free for iPad running iOS 5.1 or later

With this app, you can use your iPad to manage open houses and follow up with visitors after the event. Potential buyers sign in on your iPad, and their contact information can be synced with other devices via iCloud. Users can create and e-mail a report to sellers and follow up with buyers through an e-mail containing a brief survey.

REALTOR.com Mobile Apps

REALTOR.com

Free for Android, Windows Phone, iPhone, and iPad

Instantly access the largest and most popular database of real estate listings with this app, which supports GPS-based searches to show what properties are available and what recently sold within a definable area based on your present location. Results are automatically mapped, with links to key listing details and property photos with a listing agent’s contact info.

Fee-Based Apps

Fee-based apps can be priced in several ways: Some are sold for a modest, one-time fee, while others require an annual subscription. A few of these are free but are included here because you must be a subscriber or purchaser of a more expensive underlying solution to use the app.

Agent Alarm

AgentAlarm.com

$60/year for Android; iOS version awaiting approval

This personal security app for real estate professionals provides a system for keeping others informed of your status and location and can initiate an emergency alert if needed. You can input your location of a showing or open house, how long you expect to be, and whom to contact in case of emergency. The Safety Check feature will check in with you at preset intervals for verification of your safety. If you don’t respond, the system automatically sends emergency messages to contacts. If you press an assigned button on your phone keypad, its Panic Button feature alerts your contacts you need help via a text message that provides your current location. A free “lite” version is also available.

DocuSign for Mobile (REALTOR Benefits® Partner)

DocuSign Inc.

Free but requires subscription to Real Estate edition, starting at $14.95

With this app, users can digitally sign DocuSign documents from their iOS or Windows 7 devices. The free DocuSign for iPad and iPhone app gives subscribers to its real estate editions mobile access to account features, and the ability to send, track, and securely sign documents. Along with the signature, the app captures the GPS location at the time of signing.

EverNote Premium

EverNote

$5/month or $45/year

Available for all mobile operating systems and most popular desktop Web browsers, this app provides a cloud solution for collecting and organizing digital content so it’s accessible on whatever system you’re using. The Premium version allows file uploads of up to 1 GB a month, offline access to information stored in notebooks, text searching in images, searching of PDFs scanned and uploaded to your files, and secure protection of files stored on iPhone and Android phones. A free limited version also is available.

HootSuite Pro with Mobile

HootSuite Media Inc.

Free app; Pro account, $9.99/month; available for Android, Blackberry, iPad, and iPhone

HootSuite provides the tools for managing all your social networking activity through one interface. It’s compatible with sites such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google Plus, Foursquare, and WordPress. The mobile app extends that to mobile handsets and tablets, so users can easily stay on top of social networking and marketing wherever they are though ought the day.

MagicPlan

Sensopia

Free app, but file-export/sharing pricing starts at $2.49 per plan with volume discounts available;

for iOS devices; Android version in development

The app reduces the process of creating a floor plan of a house to point-and-shoot simplicity. Follow screen guides as you snap pictures of a room sequentially. The software automatically creates a floor plan with room dimensions, including door and window openings. Floor plans can be saved and exported as PDFs or JPEGs for sharing, or as DXF files for use in CAD software.

Supra eKey for Android and iPhone

Supra

Monthly fee set by MLS or local provider; required adapters are $54.95 for iPhone; $44.95 for Android

This app and companion smartphone adapter turns the smartphone into a lockbox key. Users can obtain listing keys wirelessly, manage and program lockboxes, and change codes in the field. The Android adapter converts Bluetooth signals to infrared for controlling the lockbox. The iPhone adapter plugs into the phone and communicated with lockboxes via infrared wireless.

Top Producer Mobile

Top Producer Systems

For devices running at least iOS 4.3.1, Android 2.2, or Blackberry 6.0; requires subscription to Top Producer CRM, starting at $39.95/month

The mobile version of the popular real estate contact management and marketing system extends the reach of all desktop system features to Web-enabled mobile handsets with a touchscreen. Users can access data stored on the system, search and edit contact information, and manage tasks. Since all data is stored on Top Producer servers, there’s no need to synch info between devices.

ZipForms Mobile Web Edition (REALTOR Benefits® Partner)

zipLogix

$12.95/year; requires zipForm 6 Professional account

With this app — which is designed for smartphones and tablets running at least Android 1.6, Blackberry 4.6, or iOS 3.0 — users can access all information and documents contained in their zipForm Professional account from mobile devices. It includes tools for editing or creating documents in the field, completing forms, organizing transaction information, and distributing PDFs by e-mail. The TouchSign feature enables signing documents with realistic signature on touchscreens.