Choosing the right investment option can be tricky; especially in this age of globalization where an innumerable number of businesses enter and exit the property marketplace on a daily basis. If you, somehow or someway, miss out on the real estate latest trends, you will gain nothing from your investment. Similarly, if you are not able to make the right move at the right time, your competition will eventually come to replace you. In worst-case scenarios, you might even lose your capital – this statement stands true for all kinds of investments.
This new age of information, ushered with the advent of the internet towards the end of the last century, has completely transformed investment activities. Click and you’ll be able to access loads and loads of information stored on a vast digital platform. Previously, people had to undertake hectic efforts just to access the relevant information concerning investment options. For someone who had to compare various mutual funds, he or she had to commute to various financial institutions.
Now, one can perform the same task within minutes – and with little effort involved – by letting the internet perform the comparisons required. This gives users the option to acquire plenty of insights. It also allows them to perform exhaustive analysis instead of worrying about the basics.
The treasure trove of information available…
Making investments in real estate, in the traditional sense at least, is a complicated undertaking than, say, mutual funds or even stocks. More factors are – or should be – involved in the decision-making process concerning real estate investments. It is not surprising that real estate websites around the world have introduced numerous features to provide excellent insights into the workings of the global property marketplace.
Zillow, the undisputed top real estate website in the world, is one of the first e-classified advertisers of the world. Even though it is one of the more conventional real estate websites, Zillow is the one who sets the conventions; pioneering the idea of providing an estimated valuation for properties in the United States. You can also find past prices (or equivalent estimates) for almost any home in the US.
For its part, Zillow is also fantastic in the sense that it provides people with an estimated increase in the value of their home over time. This is precisely the kind of thing that any real estate investor would like while considering investment options.
Other websites, especially those working in developing economies, provide their own version of similar information. For all the esotericism surrounding Pakistan’s real estate sector, the volume of information that Zameen.com has provided since its arrival in 2006 is phenomenal.
On one hand, they provide details of price changes recorded over specific periods of time. This data is available for the price within a specific city, and over the entire country. On the other hand, they make the search data for properties on Zameen.com for each specific locality. You can also find search data for specific sub-localities and residential projects within those localities on their trends section.
The kind of data they have available on their website is available nowhere else for Pakistanis properties. It comes as no surprise that when the Pakistani government needed information on the local property marketplace – in its efforts to provide low-cost housing facilities – it reached out to Zameen.com in for the data required.
Understanding the dynamics of supply & demand
At its heart, real estate is as much about supply and demand as any other market. Your real estate investment will depend on these dynamics just like any other investment. It will also be affected by the expectations of buyers and sellers. Additionally, the availability of properties of certain types and in those specific areas is also going to affect it. So, the information you obtain should be geared towards understanding those aspects of the market. It should help you predict future demand and supply.
It will be the supply and demand which will help you determine when to buy a property – and when to sell it. Let’s expand the example of Zameen.com a little further. Zameen.com allows you to keep an eye on all the new projects being launched in the market. It also allows you to keep tabs on the general prices in a particular area. Add to that the fact that you can see the general direction of the market through the price index. In addition to this facility, the search trends are perfect for keeping an eye on the general direction of the market.
In general, what this means is that as long as you remain in touch with the market, enough that you can understand why something is happening, it can allow you to predict the direction of future activities.
It is also a well-known fact that real estate, both in Pakistan and the rest of the world, always moves in a cyclic manner. There are times when the prices appreciate, followed by a period of stagnation or decline in prices. If an investor can understand these particular crests and trough of the market, at the most basic level at least, he/she can make informed-investment decisions. Moreover, the historical price data serves to facilitate buyers in their property purchase decisions.