It’s great that with the advancements in internet based technologies and its integration GIS, we can now find and compare properties on a very detailed level without having to ever leave the couch. It truly is, because it saves time and money since you literally can be in multiple sites at once. Previously to inspect properties, you needed to go out of your way and travel endless kilometres to your destination only to find out that the property you had your eyes was way off the mark.
So what’s the catch? the catch is by basing your research solely on these online sources, you are relying on the data entry people on the other end not to cock up. Is it as serious as Peter makes it out to be? Even with the given examples of RP Data errors (Photos not matching item description), I’m not convinced. If it was such a big problem, then RP Data wouldn’t still be in business.
Personally, I don’t expect internet data to be 100% reliable in any case no matter who the source is, because the information had to be entered into by a human being. Don’t forget human beings make errors once in a while. As long as the percentage of error is kept to a negligible amount, then it is still a reasonable reliable source for property & real estate information. To me, the power of RP Data isn’t in its individual listings, but the combined data of all the individual listings generating vital information on suburbs and cities such:
- Suburb profiles
- Sales reports
- Suburb value outline
- Rental insight reports
Adding to my argument, if you were to base such high risk investments purely on internet resources, you shouldn’t be in this line of work. To put things into perspective, these errors Peter speak of are really rare cases, and in the grand scheme of things, it does not make a difference in the market. Not even a ripple. However, it would be diligent of RP Data to pick up on these incorrect listings and provide updated images or descriptions. Having said that, for a company as big as RP Data, ‘if it ain’t broken, don’t fix it‘.
Having just briefly browsed their website and reading “Why RP Data?”, I’m feeling pretty ironic right now…
Check this out, this is what they claim….go figure!
Leaders choose RP Data: Over 100,000 people in property, finance and government use RP Data 30,000 times a day.
Here’s why, Databases are updated daily and validated four ways:
- Against government sources
- By industry professionals
- Through media research
- By global partners
Here’s one of RP Data’s main competitors in the current market; Price Finder. Favourably regarded by Peter, and you can see why. The interface of Price Finder is very user focused compared to RP Data and it’s the logical way to compete since RP Data has been around for some time with established market share. The most promising feature with Price Finder is its integration with Google maps. With this integration, property data is then geocoded with a specific points on the map allowing greater possibilities and depth of analysis.
So really the gist of this post is when dealing with Property information, there is no such thing as too many resources. No one site or program is going to provide you with accurate information consistently to warrant a blind reliance on that information source. Do your due diligence, cross-check online information as well as comparing it with information gathered from the locals, and then and only then you will hard to go wrong.
- Research Tools with the good bloke Pete (jonbolster.wordpress.com)
- Week 5 – RP Data w/ Allan Teale (utspropertyblog.wordpress.com)
- RP Data (bobhanna94.wordpress.com)
- RP Data for property report investigation-Pernille Christensen (willhgh.wordpress.com)