Los Altos Real Estate Blog


Can you actually shop for a house on a smartphone?

In 2012, most home buyers are shopping for houses with a smart phone or tablet.  Even as recently as 2010, the screen sizes were so small and the apps so limited that the experience was miserable at best.  These days the apps are so good home buyers spend more time on their smartphones than their PCs.  So which smartphones and apps are best for consumer to go house hunting?


The Best Smartphones for Home Shopping

Defining the best is a very subjective opinion.  Be that as it may, in my opinion you need a large screen so you have the best chance of seeing details of home pictures, virtual tours, and floor plans. The best phones include the iPhone and a wide range of Android phones.  A few of the smartphones with the best performance and largest screens include:

HTC Droid DNA - 5" 1080p screen (best of any smartphone), quad-core processor, and more

Samsung Galaxy S3 - 4.8" HD screen, dual-core processor, and 4G network support (great for virtual tours)

Google Nexus 4 - 4.7" 320ppi screen, quad-core processor, and the most up-to-date Google Maps

Apple iPhone 5 - 4" RETINA display, dual-core processor, and smooth graphics for photos and video


The Best Apps for Home Shopping




Real Estate by Smarter Agent

Padmapper (rentals)


So what can you do with a smartphone and really good apps to find a home?  A whole lot!  For example, you can:

  • find listings
  • preview listings
  • find open houses
  • map open houses
  • watch virtual tours
  • find agent contact information
  • and even calculate mortgage payments

A quality smart phone and the right apps can make a home buying experience faster, easier, and more efficient. You can even take a look at the neighborhood before you arrive by using Google Streetview.  That little trick alone save you a lot of driving around. So whether you're a consumer or an agent make sure you're armed with the best possible phone and the right combination of apps to make home buying easier.


I had done an article on this way back in early 2010 and found, at the time, that smartphones had screens too small to be useful.  In the last 2 1/2 years, the technology has evolved so much that these days consumers and agents can't be without them.

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 Bryan Robertson, CEO | T: 650.799.9951 | Email: bryan@catarra-re.com | Website: http://www.BryanRobertsonHomes.com |CA BRE# 01191946 | Catarra Real Estate, Inc  | 171 Main St #220 | Los Altos, CA 94022



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Comment balloon 9 commentsBryan Robertson • December 28 2012 11:01AM
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