Consumers on a free data ride

Consumers will have greater access to property sales information, with one leading provider announcing plans to offer its data reports for free.

General manager of real estate at Fairfax Media, owner of Domain, Tony Blamey told Real Estate Business Australian Property Monitors was making more property data available to consumers via the Domain website and its mobile applications.

“We're seeing overseas trends in the UK [and] the US markets where consumer data is really a valuable commodity and we've got that data and we've traditionally locked it somewhat behind a pay wall,” he said.

“Now we open that up more and more to consumers to be able to inform them better about the property market, about sales history, on properties and informing them about properties that aren't even on the markets so they can get a real view of not only listings when they're looking to buy but also informing them when they're thinking about selling as well.”

Director of RT Edgar Boroondara Glen Coutinho said the move was good for agents and consumers.

“It allows consumers to be better versed in what’s happening with their property. It allows consumers to have better understanding of the real estate market prior to calling an agent in, and there’s less work from the agent trying to get them to listen to the market prices because they’ll do it themselves,"  he said.

General manager at Newcastle-based Robinson Property, Matthew Waddell, agreed, saying it was better for consumers to be educated rather than to be coming up with assumptions about prices.

“I think the more information they have the more informed they are,” he said. “The main thing is making sure the information is relevant because the market is moving so quickly.

“The olden days of agents trying to keep all this information and giving it out sparingly are pretty much over. With everyone reporting their prices on RP Data and APM and on their own websites, if customers spend the time they can get the information themselves.”

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