Lettingweb.com is the first letting only UK property website to introduce an iPhone application with a Global Positioning System (GPS) to identify the user’s current location in relation to available properties to rent in that area.
Users can also view a photo slideshow and the property’s particulars on their iPhone, call the agent with an enquiry, forward details to friends or e-mail immediately from their phone so there’s nothing for them to remember later. For the agent, the chances of receiving an enquiry are greatly improved as it all happens instantly.
Mr Richard Matthews, Marketing Manager at Lettingweb.com’s, said:
“As a technology business we are focused on providing the most innovative and practical solutions for our letting agent customers. As many home hunters use iPhones, we decided to invest in the technology to make searching for a property easier and faster. This should also translate to higher enquiries for our member firms.
“We tested the application with a group of home hunters and almost 400 users downloaded it during testing. Since then the app has received some very favourable reviews on Apple’s iTunes website. This technology is now available to view all of the 5,500 Scottish properties to rent each month on www.lettingweb.com.”
Lettingweb’s statistics for 2008 and 2009 based on over 5,000 properties every month, show the supply of rented accommodation in the first half of both years outstripped demand making it a tenants market. The reverse happened in the second half of both years with demand being greater than the supply of rented properties. However, industry experts believe rental prices are going to increase in 2010 due to a drop off in supply suggesting a landlord market for the beginning of the year which would go against the trend of the past two years.
Mr Matthews added:
“If demand outstrips supply and the market gets competitive for the best properties, home hunters with our iPhone application will be able to access details of rented properties on location quicker which gives them an edge over others using more traditional methods.”
Lettingweb.com works with the majority of letting agents in Scotland, about 300 member firms, and has properties to rent in other UK cities including Leeds, Liverpool, Manchester, Newcastle and has recently added Wales and Northern Ireland to its portfolio.
For the past six years Lettingweb.com has been one the main sources of enquiries for DJ Alexander, the largest property agent in Central Scotland. Mr Rob Trotter, Senior Property Manager at DJ Alexander believes it’s a smart move by lettingweb.com to invest in the iPhone technology.
Mr Trotter said: “Accessing websites and property details via handhelds is the way forward. People expect to see property details in a user friendly format and this is what this application delivers. This technology is not a passing phase and those businesses that embrace it and deliver what customers want will be more competitive in the marketplace.”