By Nick Caruso
Thanks to the Internet, REALTORS® and consumers have countless sources of information to scout through when researching the buying process or individual property information. But how much is too much? With this flood of information in our digital age, how can industry professionals and consumers be confident that the info they have found is both accurate and trustworthy? Realtors Property Resource® (RPR®) has the answer to that.
Created in 2009, RPR is the largest database of parcel-centric property information in the industry. Completely closed to the public, RPR offers one streamlined system that REALTORS® can utilize based on their needs and the needs of those they serve. Information from multiple outside sources is available, including public records and tax assessment info; liens, stand-alone mortgages and refinancing loans; school district data, reviews and test scores, and more. REALTORS® can also use the system to get geo-spatial imagery, heat maps, historical property information and photos. And the best part: it’s included in yearly dues for NAR members.
Debbie Kirkland, a REALTOR® with Armor Realty of Tallahassee, Fla., and 2012 President of the Tallahassee Board of REALTORS®, first heard about RPR through a real estate network and also through social media. She followed its development and pushed her board to jump on it knowing it would be a precious tool for her and her fellow agents.
“I love the preparation it gives me going into a listing presentation,” she says. “Knowing someone’s financial picture ahead of time, you want that ability to know where they’re at and know their motivations so you can be empathetic and know what questions to ask. It’s invaluable.”
Using RPR’s customizable reports is an easy way for REALTORS® to deliver information to clients and tailor that information directly to the transaction at hand. Using a checklist of criteria, agents can check fields on or off depending on what is needed. In 15-30 minutes, REALTORS® can be armed with up-to-date information to show their clients, including graphics or historical data sheets.
Having visuals auto-generated is not only a time-saver, but a stress reliever, according to Kirkland, whose buyers and sellers often appreciate the visual, side-by-side comparisons. Kirkland is able to adjust comps directly in front of a customer, showing prospective buyers how certain home changes can affect their property’s valuation.
“They can see the needle change and understand why the pricing is what it is,” says Kirkland.
In addition to prospective residential buyers, Kirkland also uses RPR for aid in prospecting non-residential property owners and also distressed homeowners who may be underwater and in need of help. Using neighborhood information and county records provided through RPR, Kirkland can market to these other types of sellers and expand her outreach accordingly. What she really touts about RPR is its unique ability to serve as an all-in-one inclusive source that allows her to wear these many different hats.
“Instead of me having to go to the property appraiser’s site, then the clerk of court, and then my MLS, and then to other avenues that I don’t have access to, it’s all right there in front of me,” she says.
With so much information directly at their fingertips, REALTORS® now have an arsenal of tools at their disposal, all encompassed in this one single source.
“I recommend it to other people every time I get a chance,” says Kirkland, advising those without it to keep pressing their companies and Boards of REALTORS® to get involved. “If I were a broker, this would be one of my number one training tools right here. It’s a tool that association members don’t just want, but need for their business.”
For more information, please visit www.narrpr.com.